There is a lot of information out there about social work, and it's definitely not all accurate. Unfortunately, there are many myths about social workers that might prevent otherwise qualified people from joining the field. To help you get a better understanding of what it’s really like, we’ve assembled a list of common myths and facts about being a social worker.
Don’t let common misconceptions get in the way of what could be your perfect career! Read on to get the facts about social workers.
Myth 1: Social worker pay is low
Fact: According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median income for social workers was $51,760 per year — meaning half of all social workers make more than that, while the other half makes less.
Earning a master’s in social work will likely increase your earning potential — according to Salary.com the average social worker with an MSW makes $66,627. In Texas specifically, the average social worker salary is $66,444 as of May 2021. So regardless of what you’ve heard, it really is possible to have a financially successful career while helping others!
Myth 2: The MSW isn't a professional degree
Fact: The MSW is a professional degree, meaning that it is designed to prepare graduates for a practice-oriented career within the field of social work.
Myth 3: Social work careers are limited.
Fact: According to projections by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the field of social work is projected to grow faster than average over the next decade. The healthcare field is growing, and the need for workers who specialize in mental health and substance abuse is growing too. The world will need social workers to fill the demand for specialists who can help vulnerable patients in need.
Read more: Not only is this field expected to grow 11 percent (much faster than average) between 2018-2028, there are also endless possibilities for specialized work in the field. Explore — 5 Specialty Areas of Social Work — to learn more.
Myth 4: All social workers are therapists or work for CPS.
While some licensed clinical social workers do serve as therapists or work for Child Protective Services (CPS), not all careers in social work are limited to therapy or family services. There are countless environments you can choose to work in, and even more ways you can specialize in your area of expertise.
At Baylor, we want to help you follow your dreams of pursuing an impact-driven career in social work.
We hope this list of social worker facts and myths has helped broaden your understanding of social work.
A career in social work isn't for the faint of heart, but because of people like you, individuals and communities in our world who are struggling are able to find hope and support.
To be the best possible advocate that you can be, it is important to arm yourself with the best education and tools. At Baylor University, our Master of Social Work degree is grounded in research, supported by expert faculty, and flexible enough for the busiest working professional. If you have questions about what it would mean to pursue a degree and a career in social work, we hope you'll request more information, plan a visit, or start your application today!