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Social Work Communications

Below you will find the spring/summer email communications sent to incoming MSW. These weekly emails highlight various topics, containing important and helpful information. As new ones are sent, they will be added here.

Greetings and Welcome to Social Work!

As you plan your social work educational journey, I want you to be aware of a great resource available to you - the School of Social Work Career Services Office. We offer many services to students and alumni of our program. Such services include individual career planning appointments, professional development workshops, writing services, mock interviewing, review of field and job application materials (resumes, goal statements and cover letters) and licensure information and support.

As you may be aware, the title and field of social work (especially clinical practice) is regulated in all 50 states and Washington DC. As such, these jurisdictions dictate what criteria is needed to successfully apply for licensure. Basic criteria may include verification of a social work degree and coursework, moral character and background checks, and passing social work board exams.

Moral character and background checks may include applicants answering questionnaires about past criminal offenses, sanctions, probationary status, sanctions from other professional licenses, and obtaining results from child abuse/neglect registry, FBI fingerprinting, and sex offender registry. This is serious because a social work board can decline, sanction or revoke a license based upon the information from these sources. Each jurisdiction has information about their application process and rules regarding sanctions and convictions. The Association of Social Work Boards provides a clearinghouse of information about licensure. You can research licensure requirements by state and links are provided to each state for specific details.

If you have concerns about whether or not a criminal conviction or offense would prevent you from obtaining licensure here in Michigan (MI), the State of Michigan Licensure and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) has a Preliminary Determination Request for Health Licensing form that you may complete for a preliminary review before you would have to apply for licensure in MI. This is only applicable for Michigan licensure.

Additionally, some jurisdictions may want specific coursework or field work completed during your MSW program in order to pursue a clinical license. New York, Florida, Minnesota, and Indiana are just a few of the states where specific coursework is required to achieve a clinical license.

It is imperative that you know about the licensure requirements in the state(s) you wish to practice in after graduation so that you can plan accordingly while in our program. On our career services webpage, we have basic information about licensure and a link to a chart listing each jurisdiction/state. You will also find the levels of licensure, whether specific coursework is needed, and a link to the specific jurisdiction/state.

If you have any questions, email our office at [email protected].

Again, welcome to the School of Social Work. Go Blue!

Michelle Woods, LMSW - Clinical and Macro Practice
Director of Career Services
U-M School of Social Work

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