Social Service Worker (SSW) is an innovative two-year program designed to guide you in developing the knowledge, values and skills to work directly with a wide range of people confronting the full breadth of social issues and challenges. You will have the opportunity to learn to identify and understand systemic barriers that can impede access to social and economic justice in today's society, and work with those most affected to break down those barriers.
Students will examine the expanding professional roles and responsibilities of Social Service Workers in large urban centres and within a rapidly changing society.
In addition to the theoretical models, methods and skills of social service work practice, you will learn about:
- group facilitation
- advocacy and anti-oppressive practice
- counselling skills
- community development
- social innovation
- mental health
- substance use and addiction
Apply to this program if you:
- have strong interpersonal skills and a comfort with working with people
- are committed to working toward a more just and equitable society
- are committed to examining the dynamics of power and oppression in a diverse society
- are committed to examining yourself and your social location
- are seeking to work with a wide range of individuals, groups and communities
- are prepared to engage in and develop the skills to lead difficult discussions in the classroom and in the field
Many of the Social Service Worker faculty have professional experience with:
- federal, provincial and municipal governments
- marginalized communities
- institutional health and social service organizations
- a range of not-for-profit organizations and agencies
- direct practice with individuals, families, groups and communities
- developing socially innovative programs and initiatives
There is a one-year Social Service Worker full-time option available to graduates of a baccalaureate program in disciplines such as psychology, sociology, women’s studies, environmental studies, education and cultural anthropology at a university. Students with degrees from other disciplines may be considered if they successfully completed a minimum of 6 social science courses.
This fast-track option is also open to graduates of a college diploma program including:
In preparation for the field placement, students will be required to work in multiple small and large groups within classes and community settings.
Find a complete list of degrees and diplomas considered for admission to the SSW C135 fast-track program.
SSW Pathways to BSW and MSW
You will have the opportunity to participate in approximately 550 hours of field experience supervised by qualified professional practitioners in community agencies in an 8 month placement in second year.
The college maintains relationships with hundreds of agencies operating in a wide range of institutional and community-based settings, both large and small, and throughout the Greater Toronto Area.
The George Brown College School of Social and Community Services has been offering placement opportunities in countries such as Jamaica and India for a number of years. When available, these opportunities are only open to students in the full-time two-year program (C119).
Note: In compliance with the requirements of our student placement partners, all students in this program must have a police vulnerable sector check completed before commencing their field placement. These reference checks, which can take up to four months, are done to protect the clientele of these agencies, who are considered “vulnerable persons” under the law. The fees for the reference checks vary and must be paid by the student. Students are responsible for ensuring that the check covers appropriateness for “individuals being employed and/or volunteering who will be working with vulnerable person(s).”
Note: Under review and subject to change effective Fall 2018.
The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to:
- Develop and maintain professional relationships which adhere to professional, legal, and ethical standards aligned to social service work.
- Identify strengths, resources, and challenges of individuals, families, groups, and communities to assist them in achieving their goals.
- Recognize diverse needs and experiences of individuals, groups, families, and communities to promote accessible and responsive programs and services.
- Identify current social policy, relevant legislation, and political, social, and/or economic systems and their impacts on service delivery.
- Advocate for appropriate access to resources to assist individuals, families, groups, and communities.
- Develop and maintain positive working relationships with colleagues, supervisors, and community partners.
- Develop strategies and plans that lead to the promotion of self‐care, improved job performance, and enhanced work relationships.
- Integrate social group work and group facilitation skills across a wide range of environments, supporting growth and development of individuals, families, and communities.
- Work in communities to advocate for change strategies that promote social and economic justice and challenge patterns of oppression and discrimination.