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Title IV-E Child Welfare Training Program

Child Welfare Training Stipend Program

This stipend-based training program provide two years of support for selected MSW students who complete the program with appropriate specialization in preparation for careers in public child welfare.

Participating students in the Title IV-E Stipend Program complete a specialized curriculum that includes two years of field placement in either a county child welfare unit or a closely related agency serving child welfare clients. Trainees receive an annual stipend of $18,500 for two academic years in exchange for a post-graduation work commitment of least two years in a California county public child welfare service agency.

Eligibility and Selection

Prospective IV-E students apply to the Title IV-E Stipend Program at the time of application to the Berkeley MSW Program. Selected applicants are invited to a panel interview as part of the admissions and IV-E stipend program selection process. Berkeley IV-E Program participants complete their MSW degree in the Child and Family Services Concentration. Please note that participation in the IV-E Stipend Program precludes enrollment in any concurrent degree programs.

Stipend recipients must have a valid driver’s license and secure use of a car as required for field placement, and, prior to accepting field placement or county employment, undergo a criminal background check and DMV pre-screening. A prior record, especially more recent, may preclude students from some internships.

To receive the stipend Title IV-E students should be eligible to work in the State of California upon graduation.

Program Participation Requirements

Berkeley IV-E students complete their MSW program in the Child and Family Services Concentration. Students must be enrolled full-time for the duration of the program, remain in good academic standing, and complete their degree at Berkeley.

The program consists of academic classes and internships that emphasize working with children and families who have incidents of abuse and neglect. Special field seminar sections and course work address the unique challenges that families in this system endure and present to their workers. World-renowned policy and practice instructors and researchers expose students to the most current research being conducted in public child welfare. Clinical instructors with significant employment experience in public child welfare provide practice courses and coordinate internships.

Each IV-E student is required to do their second year internship within a county public child welfare program, the California Department of Social Services (CDSS) or, for those who qualify, a tribal or reservation program.

Post-Graduation Work Requirement

Upon graduation students must work in a position appropriate to a new MSW in child welfare services with a county child welfare services agency or the CDSS child welfare division or, for those who qualify, a tribal or reservation program, for a period of two years.

Initially a student is required to apply to all counties within a 75-mile radius of the student’s residence, but should no qualifying position be available within 6 months of graduation, the student is required to seek employment with all 58 counties in the state. If no qualifying position is available statewide, the graduate may request permission to seek qualified employment with a non-profit agency that serves IV-E clients.

A IV-E graduate who is employed in a county or state DSS, and who gets that agency’s leave of absence and recommendation, must return to that agency and render two years of continuous and satisfactory full-time employment at a level appropriate to a new MSW in return for the two year stipend award. If a position meeting these requirements is not available in the agency to which service is owed, the student must apply for and accept an equivalent or higher position in another CWS office as noted above.

To learn more about the Title IV-E Stipend Program, visit the California Social Work Education Center (CalSWEC).

If you are interested in a career in public child welfare services, please contact our IV-E Program Director for more information:
Catharine Ralph

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