DFCS and Clark Atlanta University offer grants for social work students

September 22, 2005

ATLANTA (GA) – Clark Atlanta students studying to become social workers can apply for tuition assistance grants under a program designed to boost the number of trained social workers in Georgia. State child welfare officials with Georgia’s Department of Human Resources’ Division of Family and Children Services (DFCS) and Clark Atlanta University (CAU) are seeking applicants to participate in this grant program. Clark Atlanta University is one of eight colleges in the state of Georgia (and the only historically black college) that currently participates in the College Child Protection (IV-E) Grant Program for Public Child Welfare.

The College Child Protection (IV-E) Grant Program for Public Child Welfare is a joint federal and state funded educational grant for current and potential DFCS Staff. Last spring the IV-E program produced 83 graduates. Currently there are 213 IV-E students enrolled statewide. This program has been crucial in helping the state to fill caseworker positions as DFCS looks to reduce overall caseloads and improve quality of service.

The selection process for IV-E grant recipients is very competitive. "This program, highlights Georgia’s commitment to child welfare and will help meet our goal of hiring well qualified individuals who are dedicated to child welfare," noted Julie York, DFCS Coordinator for Recruitment and Retention.

The IV-E Grant Program covers the cost of tuition, fees, books and mileage for those interested in a career in Child Welfare as well as existing DFCS staff who are looking to upgrade their professional skills and training. At present, 38% of those students enrolled in the program are current DFCS employees. Professionally trained social workers are better prepared to deal with the rigors of social work, and the turnover rate among social workers with Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degrees is far less than those without. The Social Work program at CAU ensures a viable pool of professional social workers for the state of Georgia.

Clark Atlanta offers both bachelors and masters degree programs in social work. The BSW program is designed to prepare students professional entry-level practice in social work, or for graduate studies. The MSW Program at CAU seeks to advance the aims of the profession through education in advanced clinical social work practice. The program offers two specializations: Child and Family and Health/Mental Health. Above all these programs are designed to strengthen the quality of service provided in Georgia.

For more information on the IV-E grant program or to apply online visit www.gadfcs.org/randr. For more information on degree programs in social work at Clark Atlanta University visit www.cau.edu/acad_prog/soc_work/default.html.

For information, contact:
Ari Young; 404-657-1387

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