Discover Career Opportunities

5 Hot Careers as a Social Worker

We may receive compensation when you click on links to products from our partners.

Working as a social worker can be challenging yet rewarding. It requires sincerity and dedication to improve the lives of people by helping them overcome difficulties. The field of social work is largely related with psychology. And while one may start building his/her career as a social worker right after pursuing an undergraduate degree like Bachelors of Social Work (BSW), many social workers opt for a Masters’ degree in social work to brighten their career prospects. With the right education, they can utilize social theories to address human problems and help the society as a whole. Depending on their inclination and capabilities, they can work in different areas of social work.

Social work

A social worker serving as the guidance counselor at a school

Public Health

Social workers specializing in the medical field are in high demand. The employment opportunities in the medical/public health area of social work are expected to rise by 22% through 2018, the largest rate among all social work disciplines. Social workers in medical/public health field work in facilities offering care to patients, such as emergency rooms, hospitals, hospices, rehabilitation facilities, nursing homes, home health agencies and assisted living facilities. They ensure proper care and interact with the patients, help with decision-making and paperwork.  They are also the advocates for the patients’ rights and become their support during tough times. Being a major specialization, it pays more than the others. A social worker serving under this domain can earn between $41,000 and $58,000 per annum.

==> Public Health Job Leads

Substance Abuse

Social workers for substance abuse can be employed at a variety of places, like prisons, rehabilitation facilities, private practices, juvenile detention facilities and non-profit organizations. Since addiction is difficult to cope with, this is an emotionally demanding area of social work. Addicts require compassion and patience. Social workers need to navigate mood swings, anger and relapses. But knowing that your services can change someone’s life is highly rewarding. Because the legal system gives greater importance to rehabilitation and recovery, jobs for social workers under substance abuse are likely to grow by 20% by 2018. Depending on the employer and the professional’s level of experience, the annual salary can range between $29,000 and $49,000.

==> Substance Abuse Job Leads

Mental Health

Pursuing a Masters degree will make you more marketable for a job in social work. While the post-graduate degree boosts your career scope, it is a necessity when it comes to mental health in clinical practice. Mental health social workers offer therapy, which demands advanced education and licensure. Clinical social workers or mental health social workers work in mental hospitals, community mental health centers, private practices, special schools and hospitals. They analyze their clients’ mental state, diagnose the disorders, come up with treatment plans and provide guidance in the daily lives of patients. On an average, they earn up to $41,880 a year.

==> Mental Health Job Leads

Child Welfare

This area of social work requires love for children, empathy and sensitivity. Child welfare social workers offer services to children who have suffered abuse, have been neglected by parents, are deprived of properly care as they hail from lower-income families or are living in an environment deemed unsafe for them. The child welfare workers work in coordination with child protective services to look after such cases and place the children in safe alternative environments. This area of social work is anticipated to grow by 12% in the next five years. Based on your experience and location, one can earn from $25,000 to $47,000 per annum in this field.

==> Child Welfare Job Leads

School Social Work

School social work is a highly common field of service for social workers. You get to act as the link between the students’ families and the school to bridge the children’s education and personal lives and ensure that their requirements are being met. One can take up a job as a guidance counselor and work for children with special needs to help them integrate with mainstream sessions. School social workers address school issues, behavioral intervention programs, crisis intervention, sexual education, truancy prevention programs, health education and the purpose of effective communication between students, teachers and parents. They may earn an annual remuneration between $32,000 and $52,000.

==> School Social Work Job Leads


Author bio: Devika Arora is an avid writer who compiles relevant facts and analyzes the current state of affairs pertaining to the domain of employment and careers. The given article discusses about careers options as a social worker.

This is a Guest post. If you would like to submit a guest post to CareerAlley, please follow these guest post guidelines.

Good luck in your search.

Joey Trebif

job search
job title, keywords, company, location jobs by job search

What's next?

home popular resources subscribe search