This is a great time to be a licensed social worker. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, licensed social worker jobs are currently in demand, and employment is expected to increase by 22 percent during the next decade.
Child, Family, and School Social Workers. This category of licensed social worker jobs centers primarily on children and their families. These social workers often mediate in custody disputes, domestic violence situations, and single-parent issues. They may help to find foster parents for children, run support groups for families, and assist with elderly family members. School social workers address problems such as truancy and misbehavior, and train teachers and school staff in how to handle common problems. The aging baby-boomer population has increased demand for family social workers, since families face more end-of-life and geriatric care issues.
Medical and Public Health Social Workers. Some social workers find employment in hospitals, nursing facilities, or in government as medical and public health social workers. These jobs provide support to individuals, groups, and families with serious illnesses, such as Alzheimer's disease or cancer. They also advise caregivers and arrange for at-home services.
Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers. This group helps others to find and maintain treatment for mental illness and/or substance abuse. Often they take part in crisis intervention and outreach for affected persons and their families. These social workers are employed by hospitals, rehabilitation facilities, mental health facilities, the government, and private counseling practices. Licensed social worker jobs in mental health and substance abuse will be in greater demand as public awareness increases and the stigma of mental illness decreases.
Other Types of Licensed Social Worker Jobs. Other jobs in social work include administrators, policymakers, and planners. These social workers are concerned with the overall aspects of issues such as homelessness, illegal drug use, and violence. They also try to effect change at the legislative level. They raise money, increase awareness, and often work on behalf of minority or marginalized groups.
Last Updated: 02/27/2013