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College of Arts & Sciences

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Chair's Message

Dr. Jerry O'Brien

Thank you for visiting the SIUE Department of Social Work website. We invite you to spend some time to look around the site and discover whether our program is right for you. We have both an undergraduate and graduate program, each of which is fully accredited until 2020 by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). Our programs each average around 70-80 students, so we’re small enough that our program has a family-like feel. Students are taught primarily by the full-time faculty, and students collaborate with faculty in a number of research and service initiatives. We also have close relationships with many of the social service agencies in the region, and a large number of these agencies not only accept our students for field placements, but also hire them after graduation.

Our faculty have diverse interests in social services areas including geriatrics, health care, diversity and human rights, homelessness and disability studies. We also have a very strong clinical faculty, and are particularly proud of our simulated client program, wherein student “actors” from outside the program are hired and trained to play the role of client in our lab settings.

For potential students who are interested in either the undergraduate BSW or graduate MSW program, the best starting point for finding information is to click on the links for these programs, and in particular you should review the FAQ (frequently-asked questions) and Handbook links. These should answer most of the questions you would have about either program. Further questions can be directed to Dr. Bryan Duckham, our MSW Program Director (, Dr. Jayme Swanke, our BSW Program Director (, or myself ( 

Thanks again for visiting our site, and if you’d like to come in for a personal visit, we’d like to meet you. The Social Work suite is located in 1306 Peck Hall.

Gerald (Jerry) O’Brien, Ph.D., MSW

Department Chair

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