Unique Social Work Careers
Students who want to help others may find a career in social work especially rewarding. Earning a bachelor’s degree in social work has many advantages. First, there are many job opportunities available to social work graduates. Second, bachelor’s degree holders who wish to pursue graduate education in social work will find themselves at a distinct advantage.
When searching for a job after graduating with a bachelor’s degree in social work, graduates should note that many job titles may not include the words “social work.” Here are four possible career paths.
- Social and Community Service Manager: This position involves managing staff who provide social services to the public. Social and community service managers are typically in charge of social service programs and community organizations. Some of the organizations for which they work focus on helping specific populations, such as children, people with disabilities or the elderly.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, social and community service managers earn a median annual wage of $63,530. Jobs are expected to increase 10 percent by 2024.
- Substance Abuse Counselor: Substance abuse counselors provide guidance for people dealing with addiction. Substance abuse counselors provide the support needed for clients to learn new behaviors and recover from addiction.
The median annual wage for substance abuse counselors is $39,980. Job growth is expected to be high — 22 percent by 2024 — due to insurance policies increasingly covering addiction and mental health counseling services.
- Social Worker: Social workers help their clients cope with and solve problems that exist in their lives and relationships. Clinical social workers can also diagnose and treat mental, behavioral and emotional issues.
The median annual wage for social workers is $45,900, and jobs are expected to increase 12 percent by 2024.
- Probation Officer: Probation officers monitor and work with criminals with the goal of preventing them from committing new crimes. Their clients, called probationers, may be in prison, may have just been released from prison or may have been sentenced to a period of probation in lieu of jail time.
Probation officers earn a median annual salary of $49,360. Job growth is expected to be 4 percent by 2024.
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