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National Community Scholars Program

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As one of our Community Scholars Programs, the purpose of the National Community Scholars Program (NCS) is to prepare professionals for enabling young people and adult allies to create community change.

Approximately six scholars will be selected each year to participate in the program. National Community Scholars will gain skills to organize groups for social action, plan programs at the local level, advocate for socially just policies, and develop community-based services.

National Community Scholars Program Funding

  • Nonresident Award: $8,500/semester plus one-time $6,000 in spring-summer ($40,000 total)
  • Resident Award: $3,500/semester plus one-time $6,000 in spring-summer ($20,000 total)

Curriculum and Courses

  • Orientation Seminar for Community Scholars: Social Work in Diverse Communities
  • Policies and Services for Social Participation and Community Well-Being
  • Social Work Practice with Community and Social Systems
  • Social Change Theories
  • Contemporary Cultures in the United States
  • Community Development
  • Organizing for Social and Political Action
  • Planning for Organizational and Community Change
  • Concepts and Techniques of Community Participation
  • Community-Based Policy Advocacy
  • Multicultural and Multilingual Organizing
  • Intergroup Dialogue Facilitation
  • Integrative Seminar for Community Scholars: Social Work in Diverse Communities

Special Fieldwork Placements

The program offers unique opportunities for students to collaborate with leading practitioners and complete a summer field placement in one of the following areas:

  • Mississippi Delta, an area rich with history and significant roles in the civil rights movement.
  • Central Appalachia, with strong cultural and activist traditions in the mountains of eastern Kentucky.
  • San Francisco Bay Area, a culturally diverse urban area with a dense concentration of community youth organizations.
  • Midwestern Communities

Program Requirements

  • National Community Scholars must be enrolled in the 16-month curriculum schedule and select the Community and Social Systems practice area.
  • Applicants may select from the following practice method concentrations: Community Organization, Management of Human Services, or Social Policy and Evaluation.
  • Enrollment in the Orientation Seminar for Community Scholars: Social Work in Diverse Communities in the first term, 7-8 field placement credits in the spring/summer term, and enrollment in the Integrative Seminar for Community Scholars: Social Work in Diverse Communities in the final term.
  • Interest in youth participation, community change, community-based participatory research, and social justice, with a field placement in a designated agency in Central Appalachia, Mississippi Delta, San Francisco Bay Area or Midwestern Communities.
  • Commitment to program objectives, demonstrated potential for youth and community work, and fit with community partners.

Application

  • All potential MSW applicants who are interested in community change are invited to apply.
  • Application deadlines: December 1, 2017 (early application), February 1, 2018 (priority), March 1, 2018. Selection of applicants will be made from all dates with priority given to those applicants that meet the December and February deadlines.
  • Deferred admits planning to enroll in fall 2018 must submit their special program application by November 2, 2017.
  • Your MSW application must be complete by the scholarship application deadline.
  • If you would like to apply to the National Community Scholars Program, then please answer "yes" to the question, "Do you plan to apply to an SSW Special Program?" found on the Financial Assistance page of the MSW online application and then select the National Community Scholars Program checkbox. The NCS application pages will be added to the end of your online MSW application.
  • Note that it will be more likely to be offered acceptance to the National Community Scholars Program if you select the following on your MSW application: a) either Community Organization, Management of Human Services, or Social Policy and Evaluation practice method concentration and b) Community and Social Systems practice area.

For more information about this program, contact the Office of Student Services at (734) 936-0961 or ssw.msw.info@umich.edu.

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