Preparing for a Career in Social Services and Administration

The Psychology Department offers many opportunities for students to get involved in research. Students can earn Departmental credit (PSYCH 499), for working in faculty members' labs as part of their research teams. PSYCH 499 opportunities are posted on a bulletin board in the hallway just outside of Guthrie 119 and also listed on the psych department website under Research and Internships..

Some examples of research studies that may be of interest to students planning a career in social services and administration are:

  • Acculturation process of immigrants
  • Family relationships study
  • Racial identity development
  • Effects of a parenting workshop
  • Stereotyping and prejudice
  • Parent/infant interaction

Typical lab duties and experiences that may be especially valuable for students with an interest in social services and administration are:

  • Data collection and management
  • Interviewing subjects
  • Attending lab meetings
  • Running experiments
  • Data Analysis
  • Child care/interaction
  • Preparing presentations

To find out about getting involved in research across campus, and to learn about research training grants available for students, visit the Undergraduate Research Program webpage at

Related Courses

Courses that may be of interest to students planning a career in social services and administration:

Code Title
ANTH 207 Class & Culture in America
ANTH 427 Anthropology in Urban Settings
HRMOB 450 Leadership & Decision Making
HRMOB 475 Organization Development & Change
PSYCH 380 Cross-Cultural Competence
PSYCH 489 Clinical Psychology
SOC WF 200 Introduction to Social Welfare
SOC WF 300 Historical Approaches to Social Welfare
SOC WF 320 Contemporary Approaches to Social Welfare
SP CMU 220 Introduction to Public Speaking
SP CMU 384 Cultural Codes in Communication
SP CMU 474 Communication, Conflict & Cooperation
SP CMU 475 Organizational Communication
SP CMU 478 Intercultural Communication

Check the quarterly Time Schedule for course availability and times.

Internship and Volunteer Opportunities

Students who participate in internships and volunteer work get the chance to explore different career options on a first-hand basis. Credit is available for this type of experiential learning, via PSYCH 497 (Fieldwork Seminar), or GEN ST 350 (Independent Fieldwork).

Psychology majors interested in the social services and administration field have previously found internship and volunteer positions at

Solid Ground (formerly Fremont Public Association)

My internship gave me group leadership and networking skills that I had little prior experience with. It also was an opportunity to observe the day to day activities of a non-profit organization. - former intern

La-Ba Te-Yah Youth Home

The staff at La-Ba Te-Yah are very welcoming and supportive of student interns and there is lots of flexibility with regard to new ideas and creativity on the part of the interns.

Orion Multi-Service Center

The internship connected me to a whole network of professionals in the field I'm looking at working in. - former intern

Northwest Youth Services

This agency helps with placements in treatment foster care for abused and neglected children. Interns work as case aides, coordinating with treatment team members and spending time with the kids.

Special Tips

Look for paid student positions on campus that can help to develop counseling related skills. (Note: Applications for most positions are due sometime in Spring quarter, with appointments made for the following academic year. Check with individual programs for details.)

Center for Career Services

134 Mary Gates Hall, 543-0535

Psychology Undergraduate Advising

119 Guthrie Hall, 543-2698

Student Counseling Center

401 Schmitz Hall, 543-1240

Undergraduate Advising Center

171 Mary Gates Hall, 543-2550

Thinking about graduate work in social work? Both U.W. Seattle and U.W. Tacoma offer M.S.W. programs. The Seattle campus offers both day and evening programs, and Tacoma offers a three year, part-time, evening program.