Meet Online MSW Programs: An Interview Series from OnlineMSWPrograms.com

OnlineMSWPrograms.com is dedicated to helping students find and research online Master of Social Work (MSW) programs that are best for them. To go along with our comprehensive program directory and our resource section, we decided to create an interview series so that students can learn even more about the different schools and programs. In addition to specific questions about each schools’ programs, we also have questions pertaining to:

  • Field education
  • Advice for students interested in earning a MSW
  • The pros and cons of online programs
  • Eligibility restrictions
  • Advice for applicants, and more

Edinboro University: Interview with Dr. Elaine Rinfrette – MSW Program Director
Edinboro University of Pennsylvania currently offers full-time online MSW programs for both traditional and advanced standing students.
“We have a program that is geared toward completion in 2 years time for the regular program. Students can get their degree in a timely manner. It is also set up so the student is not overwhelmed during the semester.”

California State University, Northridge: Interview with Dr. Constantine Brown – Director of Online and Offsite MSW Programs
CSUN offers a full-time online MSW program designed for traditional standing students.
“California State University, Northridge (CSUN) is a vibrant, diverse university community committed to excellence in education and service to its students and the community.”

University of Louisville: Interview with Dr. Pamela A. Yankeelov – Associate Dean of Student Services in the Kent School of Social Work
The University of Louisville, Kent School of Social Work offers full-time and part-time online MSSW programs for both traditional and advanced standing students.
“The Kent School of Social Work prepares students to work in a society with complex social problems and needs.”

University of Tennessee, Knoxville: Interview with Professor Kate Chaffin – Director of the Online MSSW Program
UT Knoxville offers full-time and part-time online MSW programs for both traditional and advanced standing students.
“People should consider UTK because we are flexible, affordable, cutting-edge and we provide individualized attention. Furthermore, we offer a VERY clinical program, which many people are seeking.”

Florida State University: Interview with Professor Craig Stanley – Director of the MSW Program
Florida State University offers a part-time online MSW program designed for advanced standing students.
“…we were the first MSW Program to receive CSWE accreditation for the online format. This means that we have the most experience in providing online MSW instruction. We have had time to learn and improve over the years. We offer our program in an asynchronous format. This is different than many of the other online MSW programs…”

University of Louisville: Interview with Martha A. Fuller – Director of Field Education
The University of Louisville offers FT and PT traditional and advanced standing online MSSW programs.
“Practicum is the heart of social work education, incorporating the passion students bring in becoming professional social work practitioners. Students have a strong voice in the selection of their practicum site and lots of support throughout their placement experiences.”

University of Tennessee, Knoxville: Interview with Assistant Professor Sarah Keiser – Coordinator of Field Services for the Online MSSW Program
The University of Tennessee, Knoxville offers FT and PT traditional and advanced standing online MSW programs.
“The field placement offers students the experience to integrate their classroom knowledge into a practice setting and allows students to develop confidence and competence to practice as a generalist or advanced practice Social Worker.”

Case Western Reserve University: Interview with Dean Andrea G. Porter – Assistant Dean for Student Services in the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences
Case Western Reserve University offers part-time traditional and advanced standing online MSW programs.
“The Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences is ranked #9 in the nation among graduate schools of social work by US News and World Report.”

University of North Dakota: Interview with Professor Carol Schneweis – Assistant Professor and MSW Distance Coordinator at the University of North Dakota
The University of North Dakota offers part-time traditional and advanced standing online MSW programs.
“The University of North Dakota was a pioneer in online distance education when we began offering a foundation MSW program in January of 2006.”

Fordham University: Interview with Dr. Dale Lindquist – Director of the Online MSW Program at Fordham University
Fordham University offers part-time traditional and advanced standing online MSW programs.
“Fordham University’s Graduate School of Social Service is ranked #11 in the country of top social work schools by US News & World Report.”

Western New Mexico University: Interview with Dr. Beth Walker – Interim Dean and Professor and Chair of Social Work at Western New Mexico University
Western New Mexico University offers FT and PT traditional and advanced standing online MSW programs.
“I know that we love our students, and we work hard to get them to succeed. . . we do support and we do try to model social work as a profession in our daily lives as social work educators.”

Case Western Reserve University: Interview with LaShon Sawyer – Associate Director of Virtual Field Education for the Online Master of Science in Social Administration Program at CWRU
Case Western Reserve University offers part-time traditional and advanced standing online MSW programs.
“I’m also an alum of Case… I can say that many of the doors that were open for me throughout my career have been based on the reputation that Case Western has.”

California State University, Northridge: Interview with Director Jennifer Henningfield – Director of Online & Offsite Field Education at CSUN
Cal State Northridge offers a full-time online MSW program for traditional standing students.
“Our program is committed to student success… We take our role in the education of future MSW colleagues very seriously.”

University of Texas, Arlington: Interview with Dr. Jane C. Hickerson – Assistant Dean of Field Education for the School of Social Work at UTA
The University of Texas at Arlington offers part-time traditional and advanced standing online MSW programs.
“Our faculty are interested in e-learning and continue to develop increasingly user-friendly virtual classes that allow students to feel involved, stimulated, and supported.”

Simmons College: Interview with Dr. Dana Grossman Leeman – Associate Professor of Practice and Program Director for the Online MSW Program
Simmons College offers FT and PT traditional and advanced standing online MSW programs.
“We are the oldest clinical school in the country; we have a prestigious heritage of preparing extremely well-trained clinical social workers.”

Simmons College: Interview with Professor Silvana Castaneda – Director of Field Education and Associate Professor of Practice
Simmons College offers FT and PT traditional and advanced standing online MSW programs.
“We provide individualized attention and support for our students and offer quality field placement experiences that prepare them with the clinical knowledge and skill necessary for rewarding employment in the field of social work.”

California State University, San Bernardino: Interview with Dr. Teresa Morris – Professor Emerita in the School of Social Work
CSUSB offers a part-time online MSW program designed for traditional standing students.
“I think the best reason for considering the M.S.W. at CSUSB is the core education on social work practice offered by the advanced generalist model combined with the opportunity to develop a unique specialization”

The Catholic University of America: Interview with Dr. Marie Raber – Associate Dean, MSW Program Chair and Associate Professor
CUA offers a part-time online MSW program designed for traditional standing students.
“Our online MSW program is taught by faculty who are experts in their respective areas of social work and bring decades of real-world experience into the classroom. Our faculty also acts as mentors to our students…”

University of Southern California: Interview with Professor Terri Lee – Clinical Associate Professor and Regional Field Education Director
USC offers full-time and part-time traditional and advanced standing online MSW programs.
“I feel so fortunate to work at an amazingly innovative program like USC. Students are able to enjoy the benefits of a program which is head and shoulders above the commonly understood “online program.”

Portland State University: Interview with Lisa Hawash – Coordinator for the Online MSW Program
Portland State University offers a part-time online MSW program designed for traditional standing students.
“We have created a program that is uniquely macro-focused as an advanced concentration. The Practice and Leadership with Communities & Organizations focuses on the broader context of social work at many levels of communities and organizations.”

University of New Hampshire: Interview with Dr. Patrick Shannon – Associate Professor and Coordinator of the Online MSW Program
UNH offers a full-time online MSW program designed for traditional standing students.
“UNH MSW is a great program as our core faculty are the main professors to teach the classes… Our program is small and focused on quality… and we strive to constantly improve our program”

University of Southern California: Interview with Professor Renee Michelsen – Clinical Associate Professor and National Director for USC’s VAC
USC offers full-time and part-time traditional and advanced standing online MSW programs.
“The MSW@USC provides a tremendous amount of resources and support for students… We are committed to transforming the future by training tomorrow’s MSWs.”

Boston University: Interview with Kristina Whiton-O’Brien – Assistant Director of Online Advising and Field Education for the Online MSW Program
Boston university offers part-time traditional and advanced standing online MSW programs.
“…online MSW students at BUSSW are taught by Boston University faculty, who are committed to providing leadership and mentorship, and to sharing their expertise and current research initiatives in the online MSW program.”

University of Missouri: Interview with Dr. Dale Fitch – Associate Professor and Director of the Online MSW Program
University of Missouri offers part-time traditional and advanced standing online MSW programs.
“Our goal is to best serve the citizens of Missouri. To achieve that goal we believe it is important to have a thorough understanding of the communities in our state and the agencies in which our students might one day work.”

University of Buffalo: Interview with Tony Guzman – Director of Online Programs at the University at Buffalo
The University at Buffalo, offers part-time traditional standing and advanced standing online MSW programs.
“The University of Buffalo School of Social Work embraced technology enhanced courses almost two decades ago and had some regional distance education program offerings for their MSW program since 2011.”