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Alabama A&M, Calhoun sign social work partnership

HUNTSVILLE — The presidents of Alabama A&M University and Calhoun Community College signed a Memorandum of Understanding, establishing a partnership between the institutions.

The MOU is designed to create seamless transition to AAMU for Calhoun students with interest in social work career paths.

Students in the cohort will complete Freshman Experience 101, Freshman Experience 102, and course offerings that prepare them for the Alabama A&M Bachelor of Social Work program.

“This will introduce them to our culture and history in a learning community comprised of only social work students,” said AAMU Social Work Chair Dr. Tonya Perry.

Calhoun Dean of Humanities and Social Sciences Dr. Donna Estill said the collaboration allows students to envision success.

“Their first-year experience in social work through Alabama A&M will take them through a pathway that they can develop on their own,” said Estill. “It attaches them emotionally to the college and the college experience.

“We’re really grateful for that opportunity for our students.”

The partnership between Alabama’s largest HBCU and largest community college starts this fall. Perry anticipates impact at home and beyond.

“We’re filling a workforce need not only in Alabama, but across the nation,” said Perry. “People may not realize this, but social work is going to be the most in-demand occupation through 2029. So, I can see this program continuing to expand.”

The MOU is the latest step in AAMU’s work to produce more professionals and faculty in the field.

“We’re committed to creating a pathway from BSW to PhD not just because of the workforce demands at the entry level,” Alabama A&M President Dr. Daniel K. Wims said. “Limited-resource institutions, community colleges, and HBCUs are having a very difficult time finding credentialed faculty for social work.

“We’re continuing to grow our own and provide for the sector.”

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