A bachelor’s degree in health and human services can lead to a career that involves providing information and resources that improve the well-being of others or serving as a manager in the health care system.
Social Workers (BA in Social Work)
Social workers help clients in a variety of settings, including mental health clinics, schools, child welfare and human service agencies, hospitals, nursing homes, substance abuse clinics and correctional facilities. The basic responsibilities of a social worker include creating and implementing plans that improve the well-being of clients, following up with clients to ensure their recovery and progress, and evaluating whether the services being provided are alleviating the needs of clients.
Students who earn a bachelor’s degree in social work are prepared to pursue entry-level positions in the profession. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median annual salary for social workers is $44,200.
Child, family and school social workers assist clients with parenting skills and are involved in preventing child abuse and neglect. They assist families with obtaining services, such as child care, or applying for benefits, such as food stamps. In schools, social workers collaborate with teachers, staff and parents to improve the academic performance of students and address behavioral problems like aggression and bullying. The median annual salary in this social work field is $41,530.
Social workers in the health care system help patients and their families with management of their disease or illness. They may refer patients to community resources and home health services. In hospitals, they work with health care providers on discharge plans. Some social workers specialize in assisting geriatric patients or hospice patients. The median annual salary in this social work field is $49,830.
The median annual salary for mental health and substance abuse social workers is $39,980. Their clients are seeking treatment for mental illnesses and recovery programs for substance abuse and addiction.
Health Educators (BS in Health Sciences: Health Education)
Health educators teach patients about healthy lifestyle choices. They work for hospitals, doctor’s offices, nonprofit organizations and the government, which are all interested in the prevention or early detection of diseases as well as the proper management of chronic conditions. The duties of health educators may include developing programs and events on health topics, providing training programs for health care providers and advocating for better health promotion resources and policies.
The median annual salary for health educators is $48,790, according to the BLS. However, some health educators have higher pay. For example, health educators employed by hospitals earn an average of $60,360, and those who work for the government earn an average of $50,580.
Health Care Administrators (BS in Health Sciences: Health Care Administration)
Health care administrators work as managers in the health care system. For example, they may oversee a health care facility like a hospital or nursing home or they may manage a practice for a group of physicians. It’s important for health care administrators to understand changes in law, regulations or technology that affect health care providers. Health care administrators strive to improve the efficiency and quality of patient care. Duties include supervising employees and creating schedules as well as handling finances.
The median annual salary for health care administrators is $88,580, according to the BLS. Specific job titles include nursing home administrator or health information manager. Pay varies depending on the size of the facility or practice and the manager’s level of responsibility.