Social work is a practice-oriented profession and requires mastery of a vast array of helping skills that can only be developed through practical experience. As such, the field experience is part of the signature pedagogy of social work.

Samford’s Master of Social Work students receive practical experience through an integrative field internship than spans multiple semesters. In conjunction with the program's field director, students are matched with a site that aligns with their personal interest to develop necessary skills as advanced social work practitioners.

With more than 200 unique field opportunities available locally, nationally and internationally students are able pursue their passion while gaining professional experience.

A Personalized Experience

While some social work programs simply assign a student’s field placements without input, Samford’s M.S.W. program takes a different approach. We want these experiences to be personalized for students, aligning their placements with their passions, career interests and goals. This starts with conversations with our director of field education, who will be meet with you individually to hear your desire and then work to match you with the ideal placement site.

Current Field Sites

The following agencies partner with Samford to host M.S.W. students in field placement. Placement at a particular site is not guaranteed and depends on availability.

Advent Health Zephyrhills
Affinity Physician Services (Grandview)
AIDS Alabama
Akilah Institute
Alabama Children's Home
Alabama Clinical Schools
Alabama Coalition for Immigrant Justice
Alabama Department of Public Health
Alabama Head Injury Foundation
Alabama Interfaith Refugee Partnership
Alabama Possible
Alabama Sports Hall of Fame
American Red Cross
Arc Walker County
Arise Citizen's Policy Project
Ascension St Vincent's Health System [Link broken as of 8/22/23]
Aurora Health Care
Baptist Friendship House
Beacon House, Concerned Citizens for Youth
Birmingham VA
Brookdale University Park
Brook's Place CAC of Cullman
Brookwood Baptist Health Systems
Buckner International
Cahaba Medical Care
Children's Aid Society
Children's Healthcare of Atlanta
Children's Hope
Children's of Alabama
Christ Health Center
Christian Activity Center
Christian Service Mission
Church of the Reconciler
Collaborative Solutions
Commonwealth Health Corporation
Community on the Rise
Corpus Christi Medical Center
Covenant Care
Crisis Center Birmingham
Cullman County Juvenile Probation Services
Denver Public Schools
Diamond Grove Center for Children
Dignity Health
East Coast Migrant Head Start Project
East Lake Initiative
East Lake Market
Easter Seals Birmingham
Eastern Hospital Medicine
Eastside Mental Health Center
Encompass Health Lakeshore Rehabilitation
Encompass Health Corporation, formerly HealthSouth
Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital of City View
Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital of Shelby County
First Light
Floyd Healthcare Management
Gateway Family Health Center [Link broken as of 4/15/2024]
Gibson Area Hospital and Health Services
Grace House Ministries
Grace Klein Community
Graffiti 2 Community Ministries
Grandview Medical Center
Grayson and Associates
HCA Gulf Coast Division
Hillcrest Behavioral Health Care Services
Homewood City Schools
Huntsville Hospital Health System
Impact Family Counseling
JBS Mental Health Authority
Jefferson Co Board of Education
Jefferson Co Public Defender's Office
Jessie's Place of the Jimmie Hale Mission
Kaiser Foundation Hospital
Kingwood Medical Center
Kolbe Clinic
Lifeline Children's Services
Limestone Child Advocacy
Magnolia Creek Treatment Center for Women
Mississippi Baptist Medical Center
Mississippi State Department of Health
Missouri Dept of Health & Senior Services
Mountain Lakes Behavioral Healthcare
M-Power Ministries
Navajo Area Indian Health Service
NHS Management
North Valley Church
Northeast Alabama Regional Medical Center
One Place Metro Alabama
Oregon Health & Science University
Pathways Professional Counseling
Piedmont Healthcare
Prescott House Child Advocacy Center
Public Affairs Research Council of Alabama
Quality of Life Health Services
Rehab Alabama
Riverchase Baptist Church
Ronald McDonald House Charities of Alabama
Safe Place
Safehouse of Shelby Co
Sentara Healthcare
Shelby Baptist Association
Shelby Baptist Med Center
Shelby County Child Advocacy Center
Shepherd Counseling
Southeast Alabama Med Center
Spring Valley School
St. Clair Community Health
STAIR Birmingham
The Child Welfare Group [Link broken as of 4/15/2024]
The Day Program
The Epilepsy Foundation
The Foundry Ministries
The Healthcare Authority for Medical West, UAB Health
The Learning Center Bham
The Lovelady Center
The Moore Institute [Link broken as of 9/8/23]
The Red Barn
The Wellhouse
The Wise Center for DBT
Thrive Together (Jefferson County)
Tombigbee Healthcare Authority
Trinity United Methodist Church
TriStar Health System Inc
UAB Civitan Sparks Clinic
UAB Disability Support Services
UAB Healthcare Authority for Medical West
UAB Hospital, University of Alabama at Birmingham
UAB Medicine
UAB, The University of Alabama at Birmingham
United Ability
United Way of Central Alabama
University of Alabama, College of Community Health Sciences
University of Montevallo
UT Health, East Texas Henderson
West Central Alabama AHEC
Women's Missionary Union
Work Faith Birmingham
World Relief Atlanta
YMCA of Greater Birmingham
YWCA of Central Alabama

Distance Field Placement

Samford’s MSW program offers distance field placement options to students in their final year. Domestic and international opportunities offer learning experiences that facilitate social work skill development and service in unique settings.

How does a distance placement work?

Distance placements occur in the final semester of the concentration year, so the student would take both Field Placement III and Field Placement IV concurrently in the final semester. This means, the student would have to complete 500 hours of field placement in one semester.

How is other course work completed?

Most required courses can be completed via online learning technology. Courses such as Concentration Specialization Seminar and Applied Research can be structured so the focus of the work is applicable to the field placement and can be completed while on location. Electives can be completed during another semester. Once a student expresses interest in a distance placement, the specific course of study can be reviewed and discussed.

Will doing a distance placement affect graduation dates?

For most students, the graduation date should not be affected, provided the course work can be completed during a distance placement.

What is the process for selecting a distance placement?

Distance placement can take time to finalize due to the constantly changing circumstances around the world. It is important to express interest as soon as possible. Students need to contact the Director of Field Education no later than the end of the spring semester of the foundation year. Full-time Advanced Standing students need to contact the Director of Field Education during their first summer term.

What costs is the student responsible for?

Tuition for a distance placement is the same as for a local placement. Students who enroll in a distance placement are also responsible to pay for additional costs related to the placement, including living expenses and travel expenses.