Mission & Goals

The Department of Social Work at Minnesota State Mankato offers a full-time Master of Social Work (MSW) program, accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) focusing on Advanced Generalist social work practice, including specialization year emphasis on practice in small and rural communities. The MSW program prepares students for both advanced direct practice and indirect practice in a wide variety of public and private social service, medical, and educational settings. Students achieve program objectives through foundation and specialization coursework and extensive field education. Students will learn from faculty dedicated to high quality social work education using innovative teaching techniques and cutting edge technologies.

The program has been accredited by the Council on Social Work Education since October of 2010. Students completing the program and passing the licensure exam are eligible to apply for the LGSW level social work licensure in Minnesota and throughout the United States, which is required for practice social work in most settings.


The vision for the Minnesota State University Master of Social Work Program is to be an anti-racist, anti-oppressive and a truly equitable community that centers on fair and equitable policies, systems, and practices. We acknowledge that each student’s journey to graduate school was different and impacted by various systems of oppression and privilege. We are a community of learners who value the exchange of ideas from multiple perspectives. Thereby, creating brave spaces to learn how to address fear, ignorance, and hate, while building an ethos of intellectual engagement, curiosity, and respect for others.

Master of Social Work (MSW) Mission Statement
The mission of the Master of Social Work (MSW) Program is to empower students to be ethical and culturally responsive advanced generalist social workers who are champions and advocates for social justice, economic justice, and the equality of human rights at all system levels. Located in Mankato, a mid-size community that serves as a regional hub for surrounding small and rural communities, we build on strengths and address the social, economic, and cultural challenges confronting small and rural communities. We are also committed to developing social work leaders with an awareness of historical and contemporary social, economic, and cultural issues in a broader and global context.

Adopted: March 1, 2017

Goals of the MSW Program

  1. Prepare advanced generalist social workers that understand and identify with the values and ethics that serve to guide culturally responsive social work practice [C 1].
  2. Prepare advanced generalist social workers that are able to critically and differentially apply the knowledge, theories, values, and skills required to engage in research-informed practice and planned change (i.e. engagement, assessment, intervention, and evaluation) at all system levels, emphasizing the small and rural community context [C 4, 6, 7, 8, 9].
  3. Prepare advanced generalist social workers who build upon strengths, are committed to affirming diversity and difference in practice, and are advocates for the advancement of human rights and social and economic justice at all system levels [C 2, 3].
  4. Prepare advanced generalist social workers as leaders who critically analyze, respond to, and shape the practice context, emphasizing rural and small communities [C 7].
  5. Prepare advanced generalist social workers who engage in policy practice to deliver effective social work services and advance social and economic well-being [C 5].
  6. Model and promote the core values of competency and service through life-long learning, scholarship, community involvement, and the promotion of the social work profession, spanning local to global communities [C 1].  

Adopted: June 9, 2006; Revised and Adopted: January 7, 2008; Revised and adopted: March 2012; Revised and adopted: April 19, 2017.