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ASU launches new Master of Social Work program in August

June 24, 2008 -- Arkansas State University’s College of Nursing and Health Professions and the Department of Social work will admit its first class into the Master of Social Work (MSW) degree program in August 2008. Dr. Barbara Turnage, chair of the Department of social work, states that the new MSW program will address the need for additional professional social workers in Northeast Arkansas. The MSW program is a response to requests from social service providers and citizens of Northeast Arkansas.

The MSW program will consist of two tracks: Regular Standing and Advanced Standing. In fall 2008, the program will admit Regular Standing students only. These students will hold a baccalaureate degree in a field other than social work. The first group of students will enter a four-year part-time program of study that will involve taking two classes per semester. Turnage stated that the first groups of students will start in a part-time program and, when the degree is fully accredited by the Council on Social Work Education, there will be an option to enroll full-time in the last year of the program.

Students will be admitted to the Advanced Standing track in the fall semester of 2009.  Advanced Standing Students will have completed a BSW degree within the last seven years. The first group of students will also begin a two-year part-time program of study. After 2010, the program will offer both full-time and part-time tracks leading to the MSW degree.

Dr. George Jacinto, associate professor of social work and director of the MSW program, stated that the focus of the program will be rural-based clinical practice. The Mississippi Delta area is primarily rural, and training students to work effectively in rural settings will be the most effective preparation graduates can have to address social work clients in the region. Jacinto stated that graduates from the ASU program will begin to provide needed graduate social work practitioners in NEA and the surrounding states.

An informational session about the new MSW Program will be held at the ASU International Student Center, Room 251, on Monday, July 14, at 5:30 p.m.  Applications for the MSW program will be accepted through the month of July. For more information, contact Dr. Jacinto at (870) 972 -3137 for more details about the Regular and Advanced Standing programs, or e-mail




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