If you are earning a Bachelor of Social Work at Limestone College, you may be wondering about state-wide and national employment statistics for the field you will soon enter. To provide current and aspiring social work students with this important information, we created a Careers in Compassion infographic.
- Child, family and school social workers
- Healthcare social workers
- Mental health and substance abuse social workers
- All other
Today, there are almost 650,000 social workers employed across the U.S. Their median income is $45,900 while the projected national job growth is 12 percent from 2014 to 2024. However, our research reveals that these baseline numbers vary considerably depending on the location and field specialization.
For example, South Carolina is among the top five states when it comes to the number of social workers employed in the “all other” category. There are over 7,400 social workers currently employed in the state across all four categories with mean salaries ranging from $38,350 for child, family and school social workers to $49,050 for healthcare social workers.
In terms of salary, the highest paid social workers in South Carolina are in the healthcare category. Healthcare social workers typically work in hospitals, clinics, nursing homes or health-related government agencies. The National Association of Social Workers defines this segment as “the professional continuum of services designed to help patients, families and groups improve or maintain optimal functioning in relation to their health.”
In contrast, on a national scale, the highest paid social workers are in the “all other” category, with a mean salary of $57,970. Also, nationally, the greatest job growth will occur among healthcare, mental health and substance abuse social workers, with 19 percent projected job growth by 2024.
Currently, close to half of all social workers in the U.S. work in the child, family and school category. However, this may change in the future considering only a six percent job growth in this segment over the next seven years.