Promoting physical, mental and behavioral health for all adults.
Students in the Advancing Health and Wellbeing across the Adult Lifespan ("A-WELL") specialization area are prepared for leadership in social work practice with a broad range of vulnerable adult populations.
A-WELL students are educated and trained in the assessment and intervention skills necessary to address a range of complex psychosocial, health and mental health issues affecting individuals and families throughout adulthood. Specialized training provides state-of-the-art knowledge for effective multilevel practice with adults, the elderly, and their families.
- For course descriptions and degree requirements, please see the Berkeley Academic Guide to Social Welfare.
- To see the differences and similarities between the curriculum requirements for each specialization area, view or download the "Berkeley MSW Curriculum At-a-Glance" [pdf].
A-WELL students develop advanced practice and leadership skills through 1,100+ hours of hands-on experiential learning available at a wide variety of agencies in the highly diverse San Francisco Bay Area. Field placement settings include agencies serving older adults; adult protective services; community health centers and public health agencies; hospitals and clinics; inpatient community residential treatment; crisis intervention programs; and prevention programs.
Sample A-WELL Field Placements
Alameda County Behavioral Health Care
La Clinica de la Raza
Special Program Options
Fellowship and Funding Opportunities
Integrated Behavioral Health MSW Stipend Program
Stipend-based training program for students in eligible field placements providing behavioral health services integrated with, co-located with, or closely coordinated with primary care.
Latinx Center of Excellence Stipend Program
Stipend-based training program for students to support field education in a Latinx-serving organization.
Departmental Graduate Fellowships
Center for the Advanced Study of Aging Services (CASAS) Fellowships; Rose Kleiner Memorial Award in Gerontology; Maxine W. Meldrum Fellowship; Mary O’Day Gerontology Fellowship; Riva Specht Memorial Fellowship; Tang Opportunity Fellowship in Mental Health; Wurzel Family Graduate Fellowship
- For more information about fellowships and other financial support resources, please visit our Student Funding page.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS),
"Employment of healthcare, mental health, and substance abuse social workers is projected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations. Healthcare social workers will continue to be needed to help aging populations and their families adjust to new treatments, medications, and lifestyles. Employment will grow as more people seek treatment for mental illness and substance abuse."
80% of Berkeley Social Welfare graduates find full-time employment within six months of graduation, and over 90% are currently working in social welfare or related careers. Challenging and rewarding leadership positions are available to A-WELL MSW graduates in a wide variety of nonprofit, public and private settings:
Sample Career Possibilities:
Sample Job Settings:
- Berkeley Social Welfare Career Guide [pdf]
- BLS Occupational Outlook Handbook: Social Workers
- Career Center
- National Association of Social Workers: Aging Practice
- National Association of Social Workers: Mental Health Practice
California Social Work Education Center (CalSWEC)
Center for the Advanced Study of Aging Services (CASAS)
Center for Prevention Research in Social Welfare
Mack Center on Mental Health and Social Conflict