College of Liberal Arts & Social Sciences
Social Sciences Department
Master of Social Work (MSW)

The mission of the Master of Social Work program is to prepare social workers who honor and promote the resiliency of individuals, families, groups, communities, institutions, and systems in the Virgin Islands, the Caribbean, and its diaspora, through ethical, evidence-based practice and advocacy that centers the cultural, historical, political, economic, and environmental experiences, needs, and rights of those served.

The MSW Program has two overarching goals for Generalist Practice and  Specialized Practice course sequences.

  • Goal One: To prepare students for ethical, competent generalist social work practice in local, regional, and global settings, which requires knowledge grounded in scientific inquiry, values that foster respect for diversity, and trauma-informed, culturally responsive skills for promoting individual and community well-being. 
  • Goal Two: Advance the knowledge and skills of generalist practitioners to engage in ethical, evidence-based practices and advocacy with, and for, children, youth, and families in the VI, the Caribbean and its diaspora.

The MSW Program goals are the basis for curriculum design, assessing program effectiveness and the competency of students, and guide program development. The program assessment is based on the Council of Social Work Education’s (CSWE)  2015 Educational and Policy and Accreditation Standards which include core competencies.
All courses support the development of nine core competencies in graduates. These include:

  • Competency 1: Demonstrate Ethical and Professional Behavior
  • Competency 2: Engage Diversity and Difference in Practice
  • Competency 3: Advance Human Rights and Social, Economic, and Environmental Justice
  • Competency 4: Engage In Practice-informed Research and Research-informed Practice
  • Competency 5: Engage in Policy Practice
  • Competency 6: Engage with Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities use empathy, reflection, and interpersonal skills to effectively engage diverse clients and constituencies
  • Competency 7: Assess Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
  • Competency 8: Intervene with Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
  • Competency 9: Evaluate Practice with Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities

Graduates from the MSW Program will have an advanced set of professional learning experiences that lead to competency for advanced social work practice and responsive community service with children, youth and families.