Stipends

CalSWEC Public Child Welfare (PCW)

This stipend program is only available to incoming full-time students who can complete all requirements at the University Park Campus (UPC).

The California Social Work Education Center (CalSWEC), the nation’s largest state coalition of social work educators and practitioners, was established to improve the education and training of social workers for publicly supported social services. As a member of CalSWEC, the USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work offers financial support equivalent to $18,500 per year for two years (totaling $37,000) to qualified Master of Social Work students who commit to a career in public child welfare upon graduation.

Students must: a) be enrolled full-time in the “on-the-ground” MSW program, b) choose the Department of Children, Youth and Families, c) maintain at least a 3.0 GPA, d) pass a public child welfare elective course, e) participate in specialized stipend seminars and f) complete two field placements in child welfare agencies — usually a county-contracted nonprofit agency in the first year and a county public child welfare agency in the second year. For every year of support, applicants agree to work a year at a California county public child welfare agency. For more information, please contact Christina Paddock at cpaddock@usc.edu or review the “Related Links” section on this webpage.

The deadline to apply is June 1, 2017.

The stipend programs listed below are only available to students in their last two semesters when completing 698a/b and 699a/b — during the traditional academic year from August to May — at their corresponding campus: UPC or Orange County Academic Center (OCAC). Students must apply in the spring semester when taking 588 and 589b. Virtual Academic Center (VAC) students may also be eligible to apply but would need to complete all “on-the-ground” stipend requirements in person and conclude the MSW program in May.

University Consortium for Children and Families (UCCF)

This stipend program is only available to full-time students at UPC in their last two semesters when completing 698a/b and 699a/b. Students must apply in the spring semester when taking 588 and 589b. VAC students may be eligible to apply but would need to complete all “on-the-ground” stipend requirements in person and conclude the MSW program in May.

The University Consortium for Children and Families (UCCF) is a federally funded program and partnership between the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) and seven local MSW programs, including USC, under the Title IV-E provision of the Social Security Act. The one-year stipend of $18,500 is available to second-year students who want to pursue a career in public child welfare.

Students must: a) be enrolled in the “on-the-ground” MSW program, b) choose the Department of Children, Youth and Families, c) maintain at least a 3.0 GPA, d) pass a public child welfare elective course, e) participate in specialized stipend seminars, f) participate in interagency group supervision, g) complete a concurrent field placement with DCFS and SHIELDS for Families in Compton, California, and h) complete stipend requirements at UPC.

Students who participate in the UCCF stipend program agree to work at DCFS for one calendar year upon graduation. The goal is for UCCF graduates to further their public child welfare career beyond the one year of payback employment and adopt a leadership role to become effective agents of change. For more information, please contact Christina Paddock at  cpaddock@usc.edu or review the “Related Links” section on this webpage.

The deadline to apply is March 10, 2017.

CalSWEC Integrated Behavioral Health (IBH)

CalSWEC’s Integrated Behavioral Health (IBH) stipend program is a collaborative effort between the California Department of Mental Health (DMH) and California schools of social work to provide funding for second-year MSW students planning careers in the mental health system. Selected student are awarded an $18,500 stipend. The initiative focuses on training students to work with: 1) severely emotionally disturbed children, 2) transition-age youth, 3) severely and persistently mentally ill adults and 4) older adults with persistent or new onset mental illness. Students in the program will obtain general knowledge and skills to work with these populations but may commit to a specific focus on one.

Students must: a) be enrolled in the “on-the-ground” MSW program, b) choose the departments of Adults and Healthy Aging or Children, Youth and Families, c) maintain at least a 3.0 GPA, d) participate in specialized stipend seminars, e) pass specific elective courses, f) complete a field placement with DMH or an agency contracted with a county DMH and g) complete stipend requirements at UPC and/or OCAC.

VAC students may qualify, particularly if they reside in a “county of need” in the state of California. Please read the CalSWEC IBH Stipend Fact Sheet for additional details.

In exchange for the CalSWEC IBH stipend, students agree to work at a county DMH in the state of California or one of its contracted agencies for one calendar year upon graduation. For more information, please contact Holly Priebe-Sotelo at hsotelo@usc.edu or review the “Related Links” section on this webpage.

The deadline to apply is March 10, 2017, by 5 p.m.

Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health (DMH)

The LAC Department of Mental Health (DMH) offers an $18,500 stipend to second-year MSW students to encourage the development of social workers in public mental health settings that incorporate evidence-based interventions within recovery frameworks. Interested students should be willing to work with persons with mental illnesses and substance abuse. The county experiences a high demand for social workers with bilingual skills to meet the needs of clients in Los Angeles.

Students must: a) be enrolled in the “on-the-ground” MSW program, b) choose any of the three departments, c) maintain at least a 3.0 GPA, d) participate in specialized stipend seminars, e) pass specific elective courses, f) complete a field placement at an LAC-operated or county-contracted mental health agency and g) complete stipend requirements at UPC. Students in the Department of Children, Youth and Families may earn a Pupil Personnel Services Credential as long as they meet and prioritize the requirements of the stipend.

VAC students may be eligible to apply but would need to complete all “on-the-ground” stipend requirements in person and conclude the MSW program in May.

Participating students agree to work at least one calendar year at any directly operated or county-contracted mental health agency in LA upon graduation. For more information, please contact Holly Priebe-Sotelo at hsotelo@usc.edu or review the “Related Links” section on this webpage.

The deadline to apply is March 10, 2017, at 5 p.m.

Geriatric Social Work Education Consortium (GSWEC)

The Geriatric Social Work Education Consortium (GSWEC), a regional alliance of Southern California graduate schools of social work and leading agencies serving seniors, offers specialized geriatric training and stipends for students interested in the field of aging. GSWEC aims to strengthen geriatric social work education, increase social workers’ competency in the area of aging and expose students to an emerging, high-growth field within social work. If accepted into this stipend program, students receive a $4,000 to $6,000 stipend. Although the goal is for stipend recipients to work with the geriatric population upon graduation, there is no mandated work payback requirement.

Students must: a) choose the departments of Adults and Healthy Aging or Community, Organization, and Business Innovation, b) maintain at least a 3.0 GPA and c) complete a qualifying field placement in the LA area. The application process includes completing a brief application form, attending an orientation and participating in a competitive interview process. For more information, please contact Judy Axonovitz at axonovit@usc.edu or review the “Related Links” section on this webpage.

USC Tri-County Behavioral Health Training Consortium

IMPORTANT: This stipend program is on hold until further funding is obtained. There is no application process until further notice. The fact sheet on the right reflects the 2015-16 academic year and has not been updated. There is a slight possibility that this program might continue, but there is no expected time frame for when this information will become available.

This program is funded by a federal grant to train students in specific areas of behavioral health in an effort to address gun violence. Part of the Obama administration’s Now is the Time plan to reduce incidents of mass shootings, which are often perpetrated by people between the ages of 16 and 25, the training grant helps fund the education of social workers who work with this transition-age youth population, many of whom do not have or are unable to access behavioral health and mental health services. The Tri-County Behavioral Health Training Consortium offers $10,000 stipends to second-year students from UPC and OCAC. Although the goal is for stipend recipients to work with the transition-age youth population upon graduation, there is no mandated work payback requirement.

Students must: a) choose from the departments of Adults and Healthy Aging or Children, Youth and Families, b) maintain at least a 3.0 GPA, c) pass specific elective courses, d) participate in specialized stipend seminars and other similar academic requirements and e) complete a qualifying field placement with a partner agency at UPC or OCAC. Students must interview with agencies eligible for the stipend in the spring semester when taking 588 and 589b. For more information, please contact Omar López at omarl@usc.edu or review the “Related Links” section on this webpage.

Non-Traditional Social Work

Available to students in their second year, nontraditional social work internships expose students to opportunities in work settings that generally do not hire MSWs. Many of these businesses — which are both for-profit and nonprofit organizations — participate in USC’s field program having seen the value in the wealth of transferable skills MSWs can bring, including multidimensional assessment and problem solving, resource allocation, relationship building, marketing and community outreach, market research, program evaluation, organizational development and project management. Nontraditional interns offer new perspectives in a variety of departments, including trust management, fundraising, marketing, community relations/public affairs, corporate social responsibility, quality control, organizational effectiveness and operations. Students pursuing these internships must be enrolled in the Department of Community, Organization, and Business Innovation. The majority of nontraditional social work internships offer stipends averaging $7,000 per academic year. Interested students will participate in a competitive interview process and, if accepted, will receive the stipend with no specific work commitment required. For more information, please contact Juan Macias at jjmacias@usc.edu.