Enhance the well-being and dignity of others.
As a social work major, you will learn to help meet the basic human needs of all people, with particular attention to the needs and empowerment of people who are vulnerable, oppressed and living in poverty. You''ll learn to enhance the capacity of people to address their own needs, and help promote the responsiveness of organizations, communities and other social institutions.
Meredith’s social work program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education and offers a professional degree (BSW), which prepares graduates for entry into social work practice and also allows those wishing to pursue a Master of Social Work Degree (MSW) to enter graduate study at an advanced standing level, decreasing the time required by one academic year.
The Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) is a professional degree that equips program graduates with the knowledge, values and skills required to enter professional social work practice as entry level social workers and/or to apply for advanced standing placement in a Master of Social Work (MSW) Program.
As a social work program at a woman’s college, Meredith's program provides unique opportunities for women interested in a career in social work. Each social work major completes a 450-hour field practicum during her final semester. This capstone experience prepares all graduates for practice as entry-level social workers under the supervision of qualified social work professionals. A weekly seminar supports students in integrating the placement experiences with professional social work theories and research.
Upon completion of the BSW degree, students are eligible to apply for advanced standing status in MSW Programs. This status enables Meredith College social work graduates to complete the MSW degree in two semesters and one summer session as opposed to the two years required for those who do not hold a BSW. Upon completion of all MSW course work, students may sit for the social work licensure exam. Upon passing the exam, the student is awarded a provisional license to practice as a clinical social worker (LCSW-P).
Meredith’s location in Raleigh and proximity to the Research Triangle of North Carolina provides a wealth of professional internship opportunities. Over the past three years, Meredith social work majors have completed professional field practicum experiences in a wide variety of agencies which include public school social work, outpatient and inpatient mental health settings, hospitals, child abuse and neglect services, and juvenile and adult correctional facilities.
Recent placement agencies include Wake County Public Schools, Duke University Medical Center, Duke-Raleigh Hospital, Wake County Probation and Parole Services, both public and private adoption and foster care programs, and child abuse and neglect agencies.
Recent graduates of Meredith's social work program have accepted positions in social service agencies, public schools, hospitals, mental health settings, long-term care facilities, domestic violence agencies, agencies that serve abused and neglected children, and programs that provide a variety of services to the aging population.
Those who decide to pursue the Master of Social Work degree have been granted advanced standing status in programs in North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Louisiana and Maryland.
A variety of scholarship opportunities are available for BSW graduates who wish to pursue the MSW degree. Some are academic scholarships which are based on the student’s grade point average, while others provide the opportunity for students to prepare for practice with special populations.
In addition to these discipline-specific scholarship opportunities, Meredith offers a range of merit and need-based financial assistance. Last year, Meredith coordinated $42.8 million in financial assistance.
Meredith’s student/faculty ratio of 11:1 and average class size of 17 ensure that students get to know their professors. In turn, our faculty know students by name and, just as important, are familiar with each student’s unique strengths and interests. This allows faculty to identify interesting research and internship opportunities for students, to write meaningful letters of recommendation, and to support students as they conduct in-depth undergraduate research. In fact, students and faculty frequently work together on such projects—more than 140 were conducted by student/faculty teams last year.
Social work faculty include:
Cynthia Leonard Bishop, Ph.D., MSW, Professor of Social Work, Social Work Program Director. Dr. Bishop earned the MSW degree from the School of Social Work, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Ph.D. in Family Studies from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Prior to assuming leadership of the social work program in 2001, she served as Director of Field Education for 22 years. She has also been active in the Council on Social Work Education, the Association of Baccalaureate Program Directors, the Association for the Advancement of Social Work Groups and she has been a member of the National Association of Social Work throughout her career. Dr. Bishop regularly presents papers at professional meetings, including the Annual Program Meeting of the Council on Social Work Education and the Annual Conference of Social Work Baccalaureate Program Directors.
Suzanne R. Rabon, MSW, Director of Social Work Field Education. Ms. Rabon earned her MSW from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has been engaged in social work practice for over 25 years specializing in individual, family, and group therapies. Prior to being appointed Director of Field Education in 2008, she served as an adjunct instructor and field liaison for Meredith College. In addition to teaching at Meredith, Ms. Rabon has also served as adjunct faculty for the North Carolina State University Social Work Department where she served as the faculty field liaison for social work child welfare scholars. She brings more than 30 years of social work practice experience to her current role as Director of Field Education.
For more detailed information about the social work major, please go to the program website.
For information about other majors at Meredith, return to the Admissions majors page.