“The transfer better suits the needs of social work students because the department now has an affiliation with a college that offers clinical experiences,” said Dr. Don Samples, CCRHS dean. “That will allow students to participate more easily in many of the CCRHS clinics, including our ALS and autism clinics, and will also provide more interprofessional education opportunities as well as study abroad experiences.”
Traditionally, social work programs are housed in allied health colleges and the transition will align ETSU with that trend while also bolstering the university’s efforts in teaching health sciences students in interdisciplinary teams.
“When you look at interdisciplinary teams and practice, social workers play an active role in those teams, to the point that they are sometimes even leading the team’s efforts,” Samples said. “This will help with the inclusion of social work in our team education opportunities, which will benefit all of our health sciences students. It will also enhance the quality of social worker that enters the profession.”
The Department of Social Work offers bachelor and master’s programs, both accredited by the Council on Social Work Education. With approximately 350-400 students in the department, it will become the largest in the CCRHS.
The department will remain in its physical location at the Lyle House on campus.
“This really is an important move for Social Work and a big reason why we in the department started the conversation,” said Dr. Mike Smith, department chair. “With this move we'll be able to continue and even expand the contributions the department can make to students and other residents of our region.”
For more information about the Department of Social Work, call 423-439-6013.