Customarily, when we think of social workers, we tend to think of someone sitting behind a desk filling out hours and hours of paper work or going to a house to check on the welfare of a child. Honestly, these are two things that a lot of social workers do, but if you are someone who is considering getting a degree in the field, your options are actually much broader than that.

Do you want to know what some popular career options are for social workers? We have enclosed even of them below:

Child welfare: We’ve kind of already touched on this one, but if you are someone who wants to work for the state by helping children who live in less-than-ideal family situations, then this is the perfect career path for you. Child Protective Services are designed to investigate reports of abuse (all forms of abuse) while working to come up with a safe solution for the sake of a child’s welfare.

Juvenile justice: One field that continues to grow is social workers who are needed in juvenile justice and corrections. These would be people who work with minors who are incarcerated due to various kinds of criminal activity by helping them to make better choices in preparation for being released.

Substance abuse: There used to be a time when if someone was arrested for participating in illegal drug or alcohol abuse, they were put into jail or sent to prison. For a number of reasons, more states are sentencing these individuals to rehab instead. As a direct result, there are more and more social workers who are in high demand at rehabilitation facilities and residential treatment programs.

Elementary and high schools: One place where there tends to not be nearly enough social workers are in the educational system. Although the position is similar to that of child welfare, it’s sometimes easier for social workers who are on campus to discover some of the challenges that students are facing because they can deal with the children at school rather than (initially) coming directly into their home environment.

Mental health: Did you know that the largest provider for mental health services within the United States is social workers? They actually make up close to 37 percent of all social workers. They are individuals who work in state hospitals and mental health centers in order to assess the mental state of patients and make a proper diagnosis, along with developing a proper treatment plan for them.

Military: If you’ve recently gotten your social work degree online and you’ve always had an interest in the military but you didn’t want to necessarily enroll, there is also a high need for social workers in military hospitals, VA hospitals and military bases in order to help people who are working in the Armed Forces to deal with some of the high demands and pressures that come with their positions.

Private practice: Another option that you can also consider is going into private practice. If you are a licensed clinical social worker, this provides you with the opportunity to see all kinds of patients, whether it’s a one-on-one, couple or group setting. Another benefit to this option is that while it can be a bit costly to initially set up your practice, once you do, you can set up your own hours and take breaks as needed; something that isn’t usually the “luxury” for other social workers.