Social work is a rewarding career that requires even more professionals than ever before. Most people come into careers with a passion and career goals that are all about making a difference in society. But still, many people only have a basic idea of what social workers do. As for the name, these professionals are indeed at the service of society by solving their social, mental and behavioral problems. However, with the growing global challenges such as poverty, unemployment, inequality, hunger and conflict, social workers are exposed to various realities of the world. To do this, these professionals take advantage of various career development opportunities.
In addition, social workers also collaborate with government and regulatory authorities to help the most vulnerable and poor societies. Although there is a higher demand for professionals, employers are primarily looking for people with the appropriate training and experience. The main reason behind the importance of education is that it lays the foundation for the skills needed to grow into a versatile career. The growing challenges of the given pandemic situation also encourage aspirants to consider a degree in social work. However, the closure of schools and colleges demotivates those interested in furthering their education and earning a degree in social work. Now, students can easily pursue a master’s degree in social work online to study from the comfort of their own homes. With this training, you can qualify to work for various roles and career paths for social work. Let’s discuss the 4 best career paths you can pursue with a social work degree.
- Mental health counselor
One of the best careers where social work graduates can work is as a mental health counselor. Since the dawn of the pandemic, mental health problems have increased around the world. Global lockdowns, the downturn in the economy and unemployment have taken their toll on people’s mental health. In addition, this effect leads to difficult life and death situations, and dealing with this situation is necessary.
Social workers are showing up to help people with manageable materials and accommodations during the pandemic. These professionals advise patients to relieve their stress and manage anxiety. They can work independently or with organizations to help patients in society. Now that the vaccination campaigns are underway, there is an urgent need for such professionals. People bury myths and misconceptions in their hearts and avoid vaccination. However, as a mental health counselor, your responsibility is to run campaigns to encourage people to get vaccinated.
- Social health worker
Besides mental health, you can also join the health sector to fill important voids in social work. When it comes to social workers, healthcare is the top career priority. This means that social workers are constantly striving to stimulate the promotion of health for all in society. Working in the health sector is indeed a challenge. But with the rewarding results and career growth, this is the perfect choice. The pandemic has put the healthcare sector to the test with shortages of healthcare professionals and chronic health situations. For this, many healthcare organizations are looking for social workers with training and experience in the field. If you are wondering how to gain experience, you can easily volunteer to gain hands-on experience.
Working in a complex healthcare organization will lead to better career growth and the opportunity to work alongside professionals. You can serve in hospitals, clinics, test sites, nursing homes, and rehabilitation centers. This way you can become the biggest contributor in the industry. On the flip side, research mentions that employment prospects for social health workers are on the path to growth with up to 14% for the coming year.
- Forensic social worker
Another booming career that you can consider with the social work degree is social work in forensic pathology. However, this is a more detailed career that requires special considerations to enter the field. Professionals pursuing social work in forensic pathology will work alongside criminal justice in courts and social services. In addition, they will apply their investigative skills for legal and litigation matters to assist justice services. Besides the professional diploma, you will also need to have a license. These requirements vary from state to state, but licensing is necessary for professional practice as a forensic social worker.
- Child protection social worker
Social workers also fulfill rewarding child welfare roles to ensure their growth in a safe environment. Children are exposed to conflict every year, with serious consequences for their future. Social workers step in to create a new career that focuses on intervening in the growing problems of child abuse and torture. You will work as a children’s advocate with parents to help create a safe lifestyle for children. Additionally, obtaining a professional social degree will also allow you to work with child welfare societies that design plans to reduce bullies or any other issue.
The Social Work degree adds various career paths that you can choose from based on your interests and skills. Every career is rewarding in its own way with high demand and a place to work. On the other hand, the employment outlook for social workers also looks promising with higher demands and high earning potential. With this, it’s easy to say that there are plenty of opportunities for social work aspirants to pursue their dream careers and achieve long-term goals.