How to Become a Social Worker in Connecticut
When considering how to become a social worker in Connecticut, it is important to research three specific areas: education and license requirements, salary information and the nature of the job itself. Social work is a profession that is well-suited for those who care about people and enjoy helping others. Social workers help a wide range of people in all phases of life, including children, families, the elderly and the mentally disabled. They help their clients overcome challenges and live productive, happy lives.
Connecticut Social Worker Salary and Job Outlook
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, social workers in Connecticut make an annual mean salary of $54,630. Healthcare, child, family and school social workers make higher salaries, which range from $59,000 to $61,000. The Springfield, Massachusetts metropolitan area – which includes parts of Connecticut – is one of the top paying areas in the country for this profession. Social workers in this region make an annual mean salary of $74,760. Social work is a growing field that is expected to grow 25 percent through 2020, which is faster than the average for all occcupations.
|Social Worker Type||Number Employed||Average Annual Salary|
|Child, Family, and School Social Workers||5,470||$62,200|
|Healthcare Social Workers||2,300||$60,440|
|Mental Health and Substance Abuse||2,570||$52,940|
|Social Workers, All Other||320||$53,820|
Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics as of May 2011.
Top Ranked Social Work Programs in Connecticut
US News Best Graduate Social Work Programs
University of Connecticut; West Hartford #37
Southern Connecticut State University; New Haven #130
Social Work Programs in Connecticut
Southern Connecticut State University
Southern Connecticut State University offers a Master of Social Work degree program in which students spend an initial year of study taking courses meant to develop foundational knowledge in the field of social work before moving to a second year of study in one of two concentrations and one of four specializations. To meet the requirements for graduation, MSW candidates must complete a master’s thesis. An accelerated Advanced Standing Program is available which may shorten the time it takes for an accepted student to earn an MSW through the university. The Social Work Department offers opportunities for graduate assistantships that may help with the cost of tuition.
University of Connecticut
University of Connecticut’s School of Social Work is well-known for its quality research and professional activities. The Master of Social Work awarded by the school utilizes a methods-based curriculum, allowing students to pursue a degree in one of four basic areas of concentration supplemented by one of five advanced specialties. Master’s candidates complete field internships in both the first and second years of study; during the first year, the internship is more generalized, while the second year internship is strongly correlated to the student’s chosen concentration(s). The School of Social Work is not only dedicated to providing an outstanding education to students, but in making a difference through its focus on contemporary issues, giving students a wealth of opportunities to contribute to society as a whole.
Connecticut Social Worker License Requirements
There is no master level or bachelor level licensing program for social workers at this time in Connecticut. The state has passed a law to provide for a master level program, but no funding or organization to implement that law has developed. The Licensed Clinical Social Worker is the only recognized type of licensed social worker in Connecticut. The LCSW candidate must hold either a master’s degree or doctorate degree from a program that is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education. They must complete 3,000 hours of post-master’s social work experience with at least 100 hours under direct under professional supervision by an LCSW. They must pass a clinical level exam from the Association of Social Work Board. Each year, 15 hours of continuing education must be completed with only six hours being home study or internet study. The LCSW must retain proof of completion for three years afterward. First-time renewals are exempt from the continuing education requirement and licenses are good for one year.
(Source: Connecticut Department of Public Health)
Connecticut Social Work Career and Job Resources
The Department of Justice offers some of the best paying positions for social workers, along with standard recruiters like home care agencies, hospitals, student support services, and rehabilitation centers. Those looking for social work jobs in Connecticut should visit the CASSW website and the job listings page maintained by the Department of Administrative Services. The Connecticut Education Association also maintains a list of job openings for social workers in the education sector. The Connecticut chapter of the NASW is the preferred association for agencies looking to hire social workers in Connecticut.
Schools with Social Work Programs in Connecticut
- Albertus Magnus College
- Capital Community College
- Central Connecticut State University
- Eastern Connecticut State University
- Manchester Community College
- Post University
- Sacred Heart University
- Western Connecticut State University
- University Of Hartford
- University Of Connecticut
- Southern Connecticut State University