Augustana University to launch social work program named after former director
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - After more than 15 years, Augustana has announced that the university is bringing back its social work program.
According to a press release, the program will exist within the Sharon Lust School of Education, named after the former Director of Augustana’s Social Work program and Assistant Professor Emerita of Social Work Dr. Harriet Emily (Johnson) Scott ‘59.
“I am excited beyond words about building and launching the program,” said Dean of the Sharon Lust School of Education, Dr. Laurie Daily. “The city of Sioux Falls and surrounding communities have an immediate and emerging need for training and support in the area of behavioral health.”
Officials from the university thank the Scott family and Sanford Health for their support which allows the Harriet Emily Scott Social Work Program at Augustana to include Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) and Master of Social Work (MSW) degrees. The university hopes to launch the BSW in the fall of 2024, which will include a face-to-face learning environment. The MSW, expected to launch in the fall of 2027, will consist of a hybrid program. Students who have earned a BSW from an accredited program will be able to enter the MSW program with Advanced Standing, which means they can complete the program in one year. Those with earned bachelor’s degrees in related areas could complete the 2-year MSW program.
Augustana is hiring a program director this year to develop program proposals and achieve internal and external approvals from both the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), which is a 3-year process. The university plans to offer a specialization in the area of integrated behavioral health within the MSW program, as well as a certificate option for clinicians.
“We are being intentional with regard to the design and delivery of the program to equip graduates to serve in a variety of roles within a variety of settings,” said Daily. “These programs have strong clinical components. These are skills the students have to develop, so we’re trying to develop our hybrid courses so that they have online components (synchronous and asynchronous), and intensive on-campus learning experiences.”
According to a press release, Scott received her bachelor’s degree from Augustana, MSW from the University of Chicago, and doctorate from South Dakota State University. The Estelline, South Dakota, native is honored that her family is investing in the social work program in her name and proud of her experiences in professional social work and social work education. Once appointed to the CSWE’s Commission on the Role and Status of Women in Social Work Education and elected to the governing board of CSWE, Scott has worked hard to serve Augustana and the profession. She continues to serve the Sioux Falls area as a part-time geriatric care manager, helping to ensure individuals and families receive the services they need to care for aging members.
“It is my hope that these strong standards of expectations of social workers will not be minimized. A social work education program and the programs of social agencies need to continue to set high standards for the community and state to find resources to serve and celebrate our diverse populations,” Scott said.
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