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UIS’ Social Work Program receives eight-year reaccreditation

July 19, 2004

SPRINGFIELD - Dr. Larry D. Stonecipher, dean of the College of Education and Human Services at the University of Illinois at Springfield, has announced that the Baccalaureate Program in Social Work has been granted reaccreditation by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE).  The council’s Commission on Accreditation gave the program an eight-year approval rating, the maximum that can be received.

Dr. Stonecipher said the council’s evaluation team cited the Social Work Program’s outstanding curriculum with goals linked to practical objectives, excellent use of the community as a learning laboratory, high quality faculty and staff, and the students’ respect for diversity.  “We could not be happier after being granted a full eight-year accreditation cycle,” he said.

The program was initially granted accreditation by the CSWE in 1999, retroactive to the graduating class of 1996, according to Sandra Mills, associate professor of social work and program director. The program was formerly offered as Child, Family and Community Services.

Dr. Mills said the program has graduated more than 200 students since 1996 and has a current enrollment of nearly 100.  More than half of the BSW students from UIS go on to graduate school, usually for a Master’s in Social Work.  She said that those students who seek employment with only the baccalaureate degree in social work are about 90 percent successful in obtaining work in the field of human services.

“The BSW program at UIS provides a ‘hands-on’ education that prepares students for graduate school or immediate employment with diverse populations encountering a variety of social problems and challenges,” Dr. Mills said. She noted that the program qualifies students for advance standing in many MSW programs, thus shortening the time to complete a master’s degree in social work.

Social work is a licensed profession in most states.  In Illinois, students graduating from an accredited BSW program can sit for the entry level Licensed Social Work exam following three years of work experience under approved supervision.  “This is a real advantage in the competitive human service job market,” Dr. Mills said.

For more information about the program, contact program adviser Dr. Michael Townsend at 206-7574 or Dr. Mills via e-mail at

    The University of Illinois at Springfield, one of three U of I campuses, is a small, public liberal arts university that offers 40 degree programs – 20 bachelor’s, 19 master’s, and the Doctorate of Public Administration. UIS has a special mission in public affairs and service and is known for extraordinary internships, a wireless campus, extensive online offerings, and a commitment to teaching.