Social worker sitting at a desk and talking to senior lady

Social Work

Social Work

Start your career as a social worker at Southwestern Michigan College to save up to 50% or more on your degree! 

If you have a passion for helping people in their time of need, our social work program will equip you to begin working in the field and gaining experience while pursuing an advanced degree. 


  • About the Social Work Degree

    Social workers assist people in challenging situations by advocating for them with welfare agencies, helping them navigate such things as adoptions or applying for benefits, developing welfare programs, treating disorders, helping parents develop plans for their children’s academic success, and more. 

    Whatever area of social work you want to work in, our degree program will introduce you to the variety of specializations in the field with expert, in-depth instruction, and research and field experience opportunities. 

    You’ll start with an introductory course in social work, learning about client populations, settings, methods, and values and participating in your first field experience. You’ll build on that with courses in interview skills and social welfare, developing your skills in observation, non-verbal communication, and empathy, and deepening your understanding of the values of U.S. welfare policies and programs. Supplemental courses in sociology, psychology, and human development will help you develop a knowledge of human behavior, equipping you with an understanding of your client’s mental and emotional well being. All the while, you’ll also complete the general education courses required by most degree programs, so you transfer ready to jump into advanced courses in the fields you care about. 

    To cap off your program and help you solidify everything you’ve learned, you’ll participate in a semester-long field experience in a human services agency. 

    You’ll graduate with experience and a solid foundation in the many fields of social work and equipped to pursue advanced studies with confidence.

    The Associate in Applied Science in Social Work is a two-year degree designed to transfer to four-year institutions for a bachelor’s degree in social work. It can be adapted to transfer to almost any school in the country. You may be able to find entry-level employment in social work while pursuing your bachelor’s. 

  • What You’ll Learn

    View the full curriculum guide for the Associate in Applied Science in Social Work.

  • What Can I Do With a Social Work Degree?

    With an associate degree in social work, you may be qualified for entry-level positions in the field. With an advanced degree, you will be qualified for a position as a social worker in hospitals, human services agencies, schools, and more.

    Careers and Salaries
    Career Option Salary
    Social Worker: $58,380
    Social and Human Services Assistants: $41,410
    Mental Health Counselors: $53,710

     2023 median pay. Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Campus Photos June 2019 65


The Foster W. Daugherty Building is home to all communications, social science, and humanities classes at SMC.