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Social Work

Student Handbook

Committees, Organizations, and Scholarships

Admissions Committee
The Admissions Committee recognizes the need to scrutinize applicants applying for admission into the Social Work Program. The individuals on this Committee are committed to screening students to ensure that their values and ethics are in compliance with the NASW Code of Ethics, that they possess the ability to establish a helping relationship, that they have the potential to engage in social work practice, and that they are able to maintain the required grade point average (GPA) to successfully complete the academic program.

Initiated in the fall of 1978, the primary responsibility of the Admissions Committee is to assess student suitability to enter the Social Work Program. The Committee is responsible to monitor and evaluate the total process of admission including design and modification of the admission forms as well as to conduct the admission interviews. This Committee was initiated in the fall of 1978. The following are the responsibilities of the Committee:

  1. Process all student Admissions applications to the Social Work Program.
  2. Evaluate, define and modify the total admissions procedure and policies.

The Admissions Committee meets twice each year, early in the Fall and Spring semesters, to accept and review applications from potential social work student candidates. The Admissions Committee also meets as necessary to evaluate and suggest modifications to the admissions process, including standards, forms, interview procedures, etc.

The Committee consists of the faculty chairperson, another faculty member, and at least four professional social workers from the community at large. The Committee may include one or more alternates. If a second faculty member is unavailable, another professional social worker from the community may fill that position. Professional members of the Committee hold staggered two year terms; student members serve one year appointments.

The admissions procedures and standards of the Minot State University Social Work Program are organized and implemented without discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender, age, creed, ethnic or national origin, handicap, or political or sexual orientation.

The Admissions Committee meets as necessary and consists of six members who serve staggered two-year terms: two faculty appointed by the Director with the approval of the faculty, two professional social workers from the community at large appointed by the Director with the approval of the faculty, and two students elected by the Student Social Work Organization.

Field Education Committee
A sound field component is necessary in a quality undergraduate social work program. In order to develop and maintain a field structure in compliance with CSWE standards, the Program has established a Field Education Committee.

The purpose of the Field Education Committee is to determine the student’s readiness for the field practicum. The Committee reviews applications for the field practicum, interviews the student and makes the final decision to formally admit students to field. The Committee meets twice yearly, in the fall for the spring semester placement and in the spring for the summer placement.

The Field Education Committee is composed of six regular members and may include one or more alternates. The Committee consists of the Coordinator for Field Instruction who chairs the Committee. Other Committee members include an additional social work faculty person, and four practicing licensed social workers from the community. If there is no social work faculty available to serve on the Committee, another social worker from the community may fill the position. Community members are chosen by the Field Coordinator and serve a three year term. These terms are staggered in order to maintain continuity on the Committee.

Performance Review Committee
The purpose of the Performance Review Committee is to oversee the adherence to the ethical expectations and obligations for professional practice in the Social Work Program. As part of the Committee’s functions, procedures have been developed for the adjudication of faculty concerns regarding students and for student grievances with the Program or faculty.

The Committee is comprised of two social work faculty members, two licensed social workers from the community and two students, elected from the Student Social Work Organization.

Curriculum Committee
The Curriculum Committee is composed of two social work faculty members, with the Social Work Program Director as chairperson.

The responsibilities of the Curriculum Committee include the following:

  1. Monitor each social work course to ensure that the content offered is consistent with curriculum design.
  2. Monitor specified extra-departmental liberal arts course requirements for appropriate and required curriculum content.
  3. Enhance the interrelationship and integration of all social work courses.
  4. Review social work course content relative to the Program goals and objectives and course syllabus design to determine duplication, fatuousness and course consistency.
  5. Process Course Substitutions for transfer students.

Confidentiality of Social Work Program Committee Activities
All meetings and procedures related to the Social Work Program Committees are considered strictly confidential. All individuals involved in the review process are bound by the professional principles of confidentiality as consistent with the NASW Code of Ethics and the Student Code of Conduct. All procedures are to be carried out in a manner that assures the protection of the individual’s right to privacy regarding academic records, performance and/or information regarding personal affairs.

Student Social Work Organization (SSWO)
The purpose of the Student Social Work Organization (SSWO) is to promote cultural, social and intellectual activities essential to the social work profession and to provide mentorship, comradery and collegiality among social work students. It also develops leadership skills.

The SSWO provides support for students in a variety of ways and expects students to likewise support the organization through volunteer work in the community, active committee membership, participation in fundraising activities and paying dues. SSWO may sponsor students attending regional conferences and workshops, and provides its membership with information regarding upcoming community and regional events. Professional connections are established through active participation in the organization, networking with alumni and attending SSWO professional, social and recreational activities.

The SSWO may sponsor an annual spring symposium and honors banquet in part to commemorate March as Social Work Month. The event brings in both national and regional keynote speakers on various social welfare topics of interdisciplinary relevance to students and professionals locally as well as to the social work profession.

All social work students are encouraged to participate in the Student Social Work Organization.

Phi Alpha National Honor Society Alpha Psi Chapter Minot State University
During the spring of 1982, the Student Social Work Organization applied to the National Phi Alpha Honor Society for a chapter at Minot State College. On June 1, 1982 the organization was notified that the application has been approved, and the local chapter would be designated Alpha Psi.

The purpose of Alpha Psi Chapter is to recognize and promote academic achievement among social work students at Minot State University, to promote interest in and awareness of professional social work on the campus and in the Minot community, and to encourage fellowship among students as they prepare to enter the social work profession.

The Phi Alpha Honor Society is a national honor society for social work students. Its purposes include fostering “high standards of education for social work students and inviting into membership those who have attained excellence in scholarship and achievement in social work”. Additionally, the Phi Alpha Honor Society promotes humanitarian goals and ideals consistent with professional values and ethics.

Phi Alpha offers membership to social work students and faculty, and each chapter is free to develop a program to meet local needs. The National Council is the policy-making body and meets each year at the time and place of the annual program meeting of CSWE. Each chapter has one voting representative on the Council.

Social work students are inducted each Spring semester into Phi Alpha based on the following eligibility criteria:

  1. Acceptance into the Minot State University Social Work Program;
  2. Completion of a minimum of the first five courses/15 credit hours in the MSU Social Work Curriculum, with a minimum of two (2) courses taken in residence at MSU;
  3. An Overall Grade Point average of 3.00 or higher; and,
  4. A Social work Grade Point Average 3.50 or higher.

The following three scholarships are awarded each year, as available, by the faculty of the Social Work Program. These will be announced in your classes prior to deadlines. We encourage you to consider applying. You may access additional information through the Social Work Web Site, Scholarship Page.

Catholic Family Services/Hassing Scholarship: ($1,000)
This scholarship is established with the following objectives:

  1. To draw attention to the unmet social needs of rural North Dakota;
  2. To assure that the value system of the Catholic Church (Christian values) is present in the social welfare system of North Dakota;
  3. To assist Agency employees to compete a masters degree in social work;
  4. To honor the memory of the patrons of the scholarship–Will and Mabel Hassing.

Students who meet the following criteria may apply:

  1. In the process of completing their junior year and understand the scholarship payment will be made if the student is attending school full time;
  2. Have been formally admitted to the School of Social Work for purposes of earning a Bachelor’s degree;
  3. Hold promise in the field as indicated by involvement in professional activities and academic achievement;
  4. Are planning to practice in the field of social services in North Dakota;
  5. Have resided in North Dakota for at least four (4) years;
  6. Are knowledgeable about and compatible with the basic tenets of the Catholic Church.
  7. NOTE: Non-Catholic students may apply.

Application forms are available to junior-level social work majors at the Department of Social Work during December and/or January of each year with application deadline about February 1st. Three applications are chosen by Department faculty by February 15th to be submitted to Catholic Family Services in Fargo for final consideration.

North Dakota Conference on Social Welfare Scholarship: ($400)
Social work majors in good standing are eligible to apply for this annual scholarship during spring semester of the junior year. Application forms are available at the Department of Social Work in late spring. Department faculty make the final selection. The Scholarship is awarded at the North Dakota Social Welfare Conference held the following fall. All conference expenses for the scholarship recipient are paid for by the Conference.

Jim Wahlberg Social Work Scholarship
The Jim Wahlberg Social Work Scholarship is awarded annually to a qualified social work student who has displayed the potential for making a contribution to the profession. Selection is made by the Social Work faculty based on a combination of academic, personal and professional attributes.

Jim Wahlberg was the Director of the Minot State University Social Work Program for a number of years, leading the program through its first and subsequent accreditation processes. This scholarship is in his memory and in honor of his commitment to the promotion of diversity, the advancement of knowledge and skills in the profession, and his overall contributions to the profession as a leader, mentor, friend, teacher and colleague.