Elevating social work

The profession of social work centers on improvement of the quality of life for all people and the enhancement of human potential for full, productive participation in society. The MSW program at University of the Pacific is designed to prepare students to practice in an increasingly complex environment.

The Master of Social Work program prepares students to work in a variety of practice settings including behavioral health,  healthcare, aging and community & public health. Students become skilled and compassionate professionals who provide comprehensive and culturally sensitive clinical care using evidence-based approaches. Demand for social work professionals is strong, and employment is expected to show continued robust growth during the next 10 years (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2022)

This hybrid (online and classroom) program is cohort-based and open to students with or without academic and career experience in social work.

Abbott Fund Scholarship possible for Stockton residents (up to 50% of tuition)

Field placements anywhere in Northern California

Hybrid format (online and classroom)

Social Work Scholarships

$10,000 Stipends Available

Apply by May 31 to qualify.

Pacific will provide a $10,000 stipend to the first 50 students admitted into the MSW program for Fall 2024.

  • The stipend may be used for both tuition and extracurricular costs.
  • All applicants are eligible for consideration.
  • No supplemental application is required. 



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The 16-month Accelerated Hybrid Program

The hybrid program, with online, hybrid and in-person classes, consists of four trimesters (16 months). The accelerated curriculum schedule has the advantage of intensive fieldwork experiences and an earlier graduation date. Students matriculate in August of each year and graduate in December of the following year. This accelerated 16-month program is designed for students without a bachelor's degree in social work. Applicants are required to have a bachelor's degree with a 2.75 or higher GPA.

Apply Now – Oct. 1st to May 31st for upcoming cohort

Priority Application Deadline – March 31st

The 12-month Advanced Standing Program

Students with a bachelor of social work degree earned within the last five years from a program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) or recognized through CSWE’s International Social Work Degree Recognition and Evaluation Service may apply to the Advanced Standing program. This hybrid program, with online, hybrid and in-person classes, consists of three trimesters (12 months). Advanced standing students matriculate in January and graduate in December of each year. The program is open to students with or without career experience in social work. Applicants are required to have a bachelor's degree earned within the last 5 years in social work with a 3.30 or higher GPA.

Apply Now – Feb 1st 1 to Aug 31st

Priority Application Deadline - May 31st


BA, Sociology to Master of Social Work Pathway Program

This pathway program offers an accelerated program of study for Pacific sociology majors. In just 4.5 years, students in the pathway program earn both an undergraduate degree and a Master's degree in Social Work and are prepared for the clinical social work licensing process. Undergraduate students will take five graduate-level MSW courses while an undergrad- these five courses will double count toward an undergraduate degree and the graduate degree, saving students both time and money.

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Why choose Social Work at Pacific?

Graduates will be prepared to be agents of change with excellent client care skills and to value diversity and advocate for social justice. Building on a generalist curriculum and clinical practice specialization, students will have an opportunity to focus in health care areas such as mental health, aging, and community and public health. The program's innovative clinically focused curriculum also prepares students to begin the clinical social work licensing process upon graduation.

Abbott Fund Scholars

The University of the Pacific has established an exciting partnership with the Abbott Fund to support MSW students while combating the diabetes crisis in Stockton.

Abbott Fund Scholars will receive a 50% tuition scholarship and training to subspecialize in Diabetes Care and Management (DCM).


The mission of the MSW program is to develop skilled and compassionate professionals who provide comprehensive and culturally sensitive clinical care using an evidence-based approach. We prepare students to practice in increasingly complex healthcare environments with the purpose of improving people’s quality of life and enhancing human potential for full, productive participation in society. Graduates are expected to become agents of change with excellent client care skills, to value diversity and inclusion, and advocate to promote economic and social justice for individuals, groups and communities, in particular those who are underserved. 

Learning Objectives

Graduates of the MSW program will be able to:

  • Critically analyze and use evidence to guide decision-making and apply clinical skills to promote best practices.
  • Use knowledge of social work practice theories and policy frameworks and evidence-based practice to develop strategies to promote high quality care, innovation, and organizational change, targeting social justice and promotion of human rights.
  • Work in inter-professional teams to develop a compassionate and culturally sensitive, patient-centered approach to health care.


The MSW program has 10 goals that are derived from the program’s mission. The goals, listed below, guide and encapsulate the essence of learning. They define what we intend to achieve in order to fulfill our mission.

  • Fostering respect and appreciation for diverse viewpoints and differences among people, including respect for and active pursuit of diverse sources of knowledge and ways of knowing.
  • Fostering respect for human rights and a commitment to ensuring the human rights of clients and communities, including a commitment to fighting for equality and welfare for all people.
  • Fostering a critical consideration of ethical principles in social work practice at micro, mezzo and macro levels and in daily life.
  • Fostering a commitment to intervene against racism and all forms of discrimination, with dedication to self-reflection and recognition of one’s own privileges, social locations and biases.
  • Fostering a dedication to critical thinking and an ability to analyze and deconstruct narratives and practices supportive of oppression, discrimination and other forms of injustice.
  • Fostering an appreciation of the interconnectedness of local and international issues and histories and a dedication to fighting for global sustainability.
  • Fostering a commitment to professional and personal growth and lifelong learning with dedication to providing the highest quality of professional services to clients and communities.
  • Fostering a dedication to providing the highest quality of service to clients and communities, with attention to working across micro, mezzo and macro levels.
  • Fostering an appreciation for learning, developing and providing interventions and programs with the highest effectiveness for diverse clients and populations, with attention to those who are most vulnerable.
  • Fostering a commitment to service and leadership within one’s professional and community roles, including a dedication to building understanding and collaboration among people in all spheres of practice and service.

The MSW curriculum and learning, designed in accordance with the policies and standards of the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), aligns with a competency-based education framework.

Eli Mall ’21

Find out why Eli, a first-generation immigrant, chose to study social work at Pacific.

Social Work Admissions

Read our Admissions information for everything you need to know about prerequisites, how to apply, and more.

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Pacific’s Social Work faculty are at the top of their field and are here to guide you.

Sacramento Campus Tour

What is Field Education at Pacific?

The field internship is the “signature pedagogy” of MSW education. The University of the Pacific’s Field Education Program follows the strict guidelines set by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) to ensure students have educationally-focused experiences that teach the essential competencies of the profession.

Social Work students meeting together
Accreditation Status

The Master of Social Work Program at University of the Pacific is accredited through the Council on Social Work Education.

The Behavioral Health Specialization launches in April of 2024. Assessment outcome data will be made available in August 2025.

Image shows some of the Social Work students, faculty and staff at SHS Day 2022.
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We take a hands on approach with our students. This means we want to get to know you throughout your discovery and application process. Help us connect with you by taking the next step. 

Non-Discrimination Disclosure

The Program is an equal opportunity institution of higher learning and is firmly committed to nondiscrimination in its delivery of educational services and employment practices. In compliance with all applicable federal and state laws, such decisions will be made irrespective of the individual's race, color, religion, religious creed, ancestry, national origin, age (except for minors), sex, marital status, citizenship status, military service status, sexual orientation, medical condition (cancer-related or genetic condition), disability and/or any other status protected by law. For further information, please see the University’s policy.

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Muddox Building
3455 Fifth Ave.
Sacramento, CA 95817

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