The Human Service Studies major prepares students to work as practitioners in a variety of professional service settings such as social services, mental health, family services, corrections, gerontology, youth programs, group homes and many others. The Human Service Studies curriculum guides students through gaining the knowledge, skills and experience necessary to work effectively with a variety of populations.
Students engage in extensive fieldwork in human services agencies as part of their studies. Through the classroom and field components of the major, students examine critically a range of human and societal problems and the programs and services designed to address them, acquiring an understanding of the societal, cultural and personal variables which contribute to the development of human problems and to their solution.
The Human Service Studies major draws upon knowledge in the social sciences, especially psychology and sociology, and emphasizes the application of this knowledge to the improvement of human life and society. In order to apply this knowledge effectively, students develop a variety of skills, including those involved in oral and written communication, problem solving, developing a professional helping relationship, organization and administration.
Professors Raj Ghoshal and Katherine Johnson facilitated a student discussion of Peter Singer's "The Life You Can Save: Doing Your Part to End World Poverty," as the inaugural Read On Elon event.
During winter 2017, College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) faculty partnered to educate students on sexual assault, child abuse, human trafficking and women offenders and to collaborate with community organizations. Outreach activities were supported by a Health Promotion Mini-Grant and the CAS Small Enhancement Grant.
A human service studies course has received national recognition from Learning By Giving Foundation and additional funding for class projects.
Guatemalan graduate student Marco Saz visited Elon University to immerse himself culturally in the United States and share his expertise on education with youth at risk with Elon students, faculty and staff.
In a partnership with Elon's community partner Crossroads and with the support of an Elon's Kermode Center Community Partnership Initiative grant, a Human Service Studies Department professor and her students presented a film series on sexual assault, child abuse, and human trafficking in the United States, as part of an ongoing community outreach program addressing these critical global issues locally.