Whether you are thinking about a career change, or you are just starting your journey in the world of work, the field of social work can be both rewarding and enjoyable. With many roles in high demand and with a wide variety of roles, you will likely find a position to suit your specific qualities.
Working within your own community and beyond, you could choose to work with babies, young children, adults, or the older generation, helping those in need to make their lives better.
If you pride yourself on having good communication skills, an ability to problem-solve, and empathy in abundance, then this could be the ideal career path for you.
Still not 100% convinced?
Keep reading to find out the top ten reasons you should pursue a bsw online and enter the exciting and thriving social work sector.
What Is Social Work?
If you are not entirely sure what social work involves, then you have come to the right place. Put simply; social work is all about understanding people and working out how you can help them to make their lives better.
By undertaking a bsw online, you will be able to enter a profession that revolves around people. Working with individuals in society of all ages, ethnicities, and social backgrounds, your job is to improve their lives.
Known for being a high-pressure position, it takes a very special sort of person to be able to thrive in this demanding but fulfilling role.
Do you think you might be this type of person? If yes, keep reading to discover more about a career in social work.
How Do I Get into the Field of Social Work?
Whether you see yourself becoming a family support worker, a social worker, or a therapist, making the decision to pursue a bsw online can teach you all the transferable skills that you need to be able to thrive in this high-pressure industry.
Once you have completed a bsw online, a Bachelor of Social Work, you will be qualified to go immediately into a position within social care. Alternatively, you could choose to pursue a postgraduate qualification in a related area such as professional education and training.
There are many benefits of pursuing a bsw online rather than an on-campus course, including:
• More flexibility
• More cost-effective
• Can study around your current work and family commitments
• Can study from your own home or anywhere else you want to
• Access to one-on-one support
• Complete your coursework 100% online with no residency needed
• Access to an online community of students
That being said, you need to make sure that the online university or college you choose has been formally accredited by relevant organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education to ensure the quality of the degree itself and the tutors.
What Skills Do I Need to Succeed in Social Work?
Although you will learn a lot of skills whilst undertaking your degree in social work, it can be useful to have the natural skill set needed to be an effective social worker.
• The ability to manage a heavy workload and effectively manage your time
• Emotional resilience
• A non-judgmental attitude
• The motivation to help others
• The ability to work as part of a team
• Sensitive listening skills
• The ability to relate to people from all backgrounds
• Persuasive skills
Why Should I Pursue a Social Work Degree?
There are so many reasons why pursuing a bsw online is a great further education option for you in 2021. From the increase in demand for social workers in the United States to the opportunity to meet like-minded people, to the chance to really make a difference to the world you live in. You may be surprised at just how perfect a career in social work is for you.
1. Social Work is Focused on People
If you are looking for a career where you will be helping people on a daily basis, then a job in social care is a great choice for you. In fact, you will be pushed to find another field of care where your actions will make such a direct impact on the lives of the people you work with.
Helping people within your community and the wider world to overcome challenges including poverty, addiction, unemployment, disability, mental health issues, and abuse, you need to have a strong belief in social justice and equality to thrive in this role.
As well as supporting people in need in their daily lives, you will also offer training in a bid to help individuals better their environments and embrace a proactive attitude to life.
2. Social Work is a Diverse Sector
When choosing a social work degree, you should be aware that there are three main types of social work: practice social work, clinical social work, and macro social work.
For practice social work, you only need a bsw online, or a bsw carried out on-campus to practice, whereas, for clinical social work, you will need to pursue a master’s, as this type of social work involves more advanced methods and techniques.
Macro social work is the best option if you don’t want to work with vulnerable people directly but instead want to lobby for change by working with governments on policy change.
3. Social Workers are in Demand
If you are looking for an industry that guarantees job security, then you should know that social workers are in high demand in the United States at the moment.
In fact, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for social workers between 2019 and 2029 is 13% faster than the national average. This means that you will be highly likely to find a job in your preferred location once qualified.
Furthermore, if you would like to work abroad, the increasing demand for this profession is also apparent in Denmark, France, Germany, Belgium, and the U.K. This is due to a combination of factors, including:
• Growing aging populations
• Increased life expectancy
• Increase in number of diseases people suffer with as they age
4. Social Work Degrees are in Abundance
When choosing a university or college to pursue a degree in social work, there are many different factors that you need to consider, including the ranking of the establishment, the course material they offer, and the quality of campus life. Fortunately, when it comes to the study of social work, there are a multitude of universities for you to choose from.
Whether you want to pursue a bsw online for increased convenience and to reduce your overall costs, or you want to enjoy the full campus experience, you will be able to find the perfect institution to support your learning and development journey.
5. Social Work Careers are Varied
If you think that the only option for bsw graduates is to become a social worker, then you will be pleased to hear that there are many exciting and rewarding careers for you to choose from once you complete your degree.
Some of the most popular careers for graduates with a Bachelor’s in Social Work are:
• Case Managers. Responsible for supporting people by offering advice and putting them in touch with services that can help them overcome their problems or circumstances.
• Patient Care Coordinators. Working within medical facilities to ensure they can provide the best care for their patients. As a patient care coordinator, you will also work alongside admin staff.
• Community Health Workers. Ensuring the vulnerable people you work with have access to the services they need, as a community health worker, you will liaise with social and health services regularly.
• Community Outreach Worker. Responsible for recruiting and supporting local people to become volunteers and active leaders within your community. To succeed in this role, you need to have excellent communication skills.
Furthermore, if you decide to continue your studies and pursue a master’s in social work, you can enjoy a career as a :
• Mental health care counselor
• Substance abuse counselor
• School social worker
• Medical social worker
• Professor of social worker
• Child welfare caseworker
You can also choose to work independently and start your own social work agency if you have always dreamt of being an entrepreneur.
6. Social Work Offers Transferable Skills
When undertaking a bsw online, you will learn not only the skills needed to succeed in the field of social care but also in many other prospering industries. These include:
• Communication skills
• Organizational skills
• Leadership skills
• Emotional intelligence
• Great attention to detail
• Active listening
• Critical thinking skills
• Problem-solving skills
• Written and verbal skills
7. Social Work Teaches You about Yourself
As briefly mentioned above, social work can be both demanding and stressful. Therefore, you need to learn the skills to deal with high-pressure situations before embarking on a career within this industry.
When studying to become a social worker or other position within the field of social work, you will be taught how to cope in certain situations, such as dealing with aggressive behavior. This, in turn, will force you to assess your own strengths and weaknesses and learn more about yourself as both a person and a professional.
8. Social Work is Rewarding
Arguably the main reason that the majority of people go into social work, this is an incredibly rewarding profession. Allowing you to spend your working day making a real difference in people’s lives, this is the ideal career if you derive satisfaction from helping others.
Furthermore, according to the U.S. News Money list, social workers’ high job satisfaction helped this profession achieve the No.5 spot in the list of best social service jobs in the United States.
9. Social Work Can be Lucrative
Although not one of the highest-paying professions, most social workers do enjoy a full-time income, although this will vary from one employer to another.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary for a social worker is $50,470, with other professions within the field earning similar salaries. For example, the average salary for a substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselor is $46,240, with an impressive expected job growth of 25% between 2019 and 2029.
That being said, the field of social work is often seen as a vocation rather than a career, with people who choose this industry to work in more focused on making a difference in their communities than any financial rewards.
10. Social Workers Can Work in a Variety of Different Settings
If you are looking for a job that offers diversity in terms of your everyday working environment, then you will be pleased to know that once you have completed a bsw online, you will be able to work in any of the below settings:
• Developmental disabilities services
• Child welfare
• Domestic violence centers
• Criminal justice agencies
• Substance abuse programs
• Nursing homes
• Churches and related agencies
• Schools (elementary and secondary)
Is a Career in Social Care the Right Choice for Me?
If you are still unsure about whether or not to pursue a bsw online and start a career in social work, then the below questions should help you make your final decision.
Do you believe in equality and the worth of all people, respecting diversity and individual dignity?
Do you believe in the importance of personal independence, choice, and control?
Do you want to fight to protect the human and legal rights of both adults and children?
Do you feel a need to protect others against discrimination and prejudice?
If you have answered yes to the above, then a career in social work is not only the perfect career path for you, but it could also even be your one true calling.
Whether you are just starting your journey in social work and you need to first obtain your bachelor’s, or you are already working within the field, but you want to enhance your prospects with further education, choosing to pursue a social work degree in 2021 might just end up being the best decision you ever make.