Thursday, June 14, 2012

SBU Social Work Program Granted Second Year of Candidacy

Southwest Baptist University News Release
Contact: Sharina Smith, Office of Marketing & Communications
417-328-1803 /

BOLIVAR, Mo. – The Council on Social Work Education’s (CSWE) Commission on Accreditation voted in its June meeting to grant Southwest Baptist University’s Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) program a second year of candidacy status.

A second year in candidacy is the next milestone in the four-year accreditation process. A series of benchmarks and site visits must be achieved before the program is granted full accreditation. The program will be eligible for full accreditation in June of 2014.

In February, a site visitor met with the University’s president, provost, dean of the college of education and social sciences, chair of the department of behavioral sciences, social work faculty and students, and social service agency representatives. Additionally, both the visitor and other designated members of the COA reviewed the Benchmark II and program response documents submitted to CSWE.

“Being granted a second year of candidacy is an affirmation that the program is in line with CSWE’s policies and standards” said Christine Saladino, the BSW program director. “I am grateful for the continued support of the university administration and the Bolivar community as we go through the accreditation process.”

The BSW program admitted its first cohort of nine students during the fall of 2011. Those students will begin their second year of the program in August of 2012. Students in their second year will complete 450 hours of practicum in local social service agencies. Amanda Keys, SBU’s director of field education, will supervise students in their placements.

“Amanda has done a tremendous job laying the foundation for our field education program this year” said Saladino. “Much of the success in this latest CSWE benchmark is directly attributable to her dedication and efforts.”

A new cohort of students will be admitted this fall. The BSW program expects to see an increase in the number of students enrolled. Additionally, the program is continuing to see increased interest in the social work major from prospective students.

The BSW program at SBU will prepare students to be professional social workers who will be able to work in many different practice settings. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics, the profession is growing faster than average for all occupations, especially in the areas of aging and health care services. There are currently more than 640,000 professional social workers employed in the United States.

The Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) is a nonprofit national association representing more than 2,500 individual members, as well as graduate and undergraduate programs of professional social work education. Founded in 1952, this partnership of educational and professional institutions, social welfare agencies, and private citizens is recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation as the sole accrediting agency for social work education in this country.


Southwest Baptist University is a leader among private universities in truly integrating Christ-centered academic pursuits with comprehensive professional programs at an affordable price. At SBU, the faculty and staff create a caring, academic community to prepare students to be servant leaders in a global society. For more information, visit

SBU’s Office of Marketing and Communications is available to news media 24 hours a day at (417) 399-7918.