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Mental Health: Description & Internships

This guide supports the curriculum for the field of practice specialization of Mental Health at The Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College

Field of Practice Specializations Handbook

Description from FOP Handbook (Excerpt)

"In this field of practice, mental health and mental illness are considered as points along a continuum. Mental Health is not merely the absence of mental illness. It is the ability to function in complete harmony with one’s environment and the capability of meeting the ordinary psychosocial and emotional stresses of life. The goals of this specialization are to prepare social workers who can responsibly meet the changing needs of people faced with mental health concerns and who can effectively advocate for quality mental health policies and practices in New York City. Students in this specialization generally have the opportunity to participate on a multidisciplinary team; work with the range of client needs (illness to wellness) and the continuum of care (prevention to acute or long-term care) to meet those needs; learn about public and private mental health laws, programs, resources, benefits, and services; use skills necessary to provide quality mental health care services in existing or alternative mental health care systems; and participate in consumer and professional advocacy networks and organizations established to protect patients’ rights."

Internships (from FOP Handbook)

"Field placement settings in this specialization include any setting that addresses part of the spectrum of mental health. This may include large hospitals; ambulatory care or primary care facilities; hospital based in-patient psychiatric units or outpatient clinics; community-based mental health clinics; day treatment or partial hospitalization programs; and substance abuse treatment facilities. Field placements may also take place in settings that are not part of the formal health care system, such as criminal justice settings but may center on working with particular populations."