There are many benefits to living and studying in New Hampshire, not the least of which is the state’s dedication to education. The U.S. Census Bureau reports that New Hampshire has high school and college graduation rates of 91.4% and 33.4%, compared to national averages of 85.7% and 28.5%. This means that there may be social support systems in place for students and those who are just starting out in their career.
Overall, the cost of living in New Hampshire is about 18% higher than the national average. You may be able to offset some of this by living in a rural area, since the cost of living tends to be higher in cities and suburban communities.
There are two MSW programs in New Hampshire, with an average acceptance rate of 75%. Tuition costs in the state range from $13,670 to $31,394, resulting in an average tuition cost of $24,083. There are substantial financial aid opportunities in the state, including an average scholarship award of $11,405.
You can expect to spend two years in an MSW program if you are a full-time student. Each year serves a specific purpose: your first year in school is your core year, and your second year is your concentration year. Your core courses prepare you for social work in a variety of settings, including mental health, child welfare, and substance abuse. You can also expect to learn about social work policies, research in the field, and the broad spectrum of social influences that affect your patients.
In your concentration year, your school may require you to choose an area of focus. For these two semesters, you take a selection of elective courses that fit in with your career goals. You may learn the details of working with different demographic groups, inspect how social policies affect entire communities, or learn about how to affect change on a local level.
During both years of your MSW program, you have to complete practicum hours. You should plan on completing at least 900 hours in hospitals, mental health clinics, and rehabilitation centers.
After earning your MSW degree, you may be wondering how you can put it to use. The good news is that almost every industry needs skilled, educated social workers, so you can really explore your options. Overall, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that most social workers are employed by government agencies or healthcare companies. In New Hampshire, some of the largest social work employers are Griswold Home Care, Medicus Healthcare Solutions, and Navico.
If you seek the highest level of social work licensure, you may be able to work independently in your own private practice. This generally has the highest income potential, and it can allow you to work wherever you want.
In New Hampshire, all social worker licensing is done by the New Hampshire Board of Mental Health Practice. Before you can become licensed as a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW), you have to complete 3,000 hours of supervised work experience over the course of two years. After completing these hours, you can sit for the state-required exam and get your license.
Salaries in New Hampshire are affected by your licensure status, whether you work in a rural or urban area, and what type of social work you do. In general, you can look forward to earning more than the national average in New Hampshire.
Healthcare social workers are, in general, the highest paid. They earn an average salary of $55,400 (O*Net, 2012). Mental health social workers are close behind with an average salary of $49,900 per year (O*Net, 2012). Family/child social workers may earn an average salary of $43,000 per year in New Hampshire (O*Net, 2012).
Just like most of the country, New Hampshire is experiencing a growing demand for social workers. Healthcare social workers are in highest demand, with anticipated job growth of 28% through 2020 (O*Net, 2012). Mental health social workers and family social workers follow this trend with anticipated increase of 27% and 14%, respectively (O*Net, 2012).
Schools in New Hampshire Offering Masters in Social Work Programs
New England College
- Masters in Public Policy Analysis
- $31,394 Tuition Cost
- $14,317 Scholarship and Financial Aid Awards
- Rural Campus Setting
University of New Hampshire-Main Campus
- Masters in Human Development and Family Studies
- Masters in Social Work (MSW)
- $13,670 Tuition Cost
- $8,492 Scholarship and Financial Aid Awards
- Suburban Campus Setting