MSW Salary Outlook
Social work is not a career destined for wealth and creature comforts. The social work jobs are probably with government agencies because they have more permanence and for the most part, still have good benefits. Working in a non-profit agency is often a year-to-year uncertainty as funding is never a sure thing. There are a number of international opportunities today in non-governmental organizations (NGOs) which are institutions often funded by governments but which operate independent of government oversight. Social work in developing countries has been a tradition going back before the Peace Corps to the days of missionary expeditions.
Social work in healthcare environments continues to see growth. As more people find themselves without health insurance, more public health facilities are providing services to families that often need the assistance of a social worker as well. In publicly operated facilities the staff often looks to the welfare of a sick child with a more comprehensive approach than just medical treatment.
Some of the salary figures below may be a little low because it was impossible to extract data for MSW social workers only. It's also important to realize that some of these positions are being squeezed by government budget cuts, while others - such as substance abuse social work - are on a steep growth curve. MSW graduates who are looking for work in substance abuse rehabilitation facilities are finding lots of activity.
Here are some salary figures taken from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and Salary.com.
- School Social Worker: $56,600
- Hospice Worker: $35,580
- Child & Family Services: $36,690
- Public Health Social Worker: $46,300
- Hospital Social Worker: $53,750
- Licensed Clinical Social Worker: $53,260
- Clinical Therapist: $44,300
- Social Work Supervisor: $53,760
- Substance Abuse Social Worker: $37,985
- Mental Health Counselor: $45,510