University News
For Immediate Release: 
Feb 23 2005

CU Social Work Students Receive Public Service Scholarships

Athens, W.Va. – “Social work is a wonderful, secure career and we want prospective students to know that!” stated Joe Bullington with the Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR) in Wyoming County at a signing ceremony on Thursday, February 24, 2005 at Concord University.

Students in Concord University’s social work department have qualified for Public Service Scholarships that pay for all tuition and fees, plus a stipend of $1,000 per semester from the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR). Concord is the only institution in southern West Virginia offering this scholarship program, which is a result of a collaboration between the institution and the DHHR.

The recipients are social work majors who agree to accept a position in child protective or children’s services upon graduation in West Virginia. While at Concord, students must maintain a grade point average of 2.5 to continue his or her eligibility for the scholarship program. While students must agree to work in West Virginia after graduation, they do not need to live in the state to qualify for the scholarship.

DHHR employees Joe Bullington, community service manager in Pineville; Lorna Dykes, program manager in Princeton; and Jeanne Goan, social services supervisor in Wyoming County reviewed the applications for the scholarships during the selection process. They, along with Concord University social work faculty and staff attended the signing ceremony to meet the lucky students.

New scholarship recipients are: Marsha K. Edwards from True, Vanessa Helbig from Spencer, and Melissa D. King from Tornado.

Two students signed renewal contracts for a continuation of their scholarships. They are: Becky Lee Blankenship from Beckley and Trenace Robin Rice from Ansted.

Scholarship recipient Trenace Rice said that, “This means that I will be able to have the job that I want. In addition, the scholarship affords me the opportunity to come back to school.”

“This scholarship opportunity provides much-needed financing for our students while helping to meet the need for social work and public service professionals,” stated Dr. John David Smith.”

Concord’s social work program was one of the first in the nation to receive accreditation from the Council for Social Work Education more than 30 years ago and has maintained continuous accreditation since that time. Employment opportunities in social work exist with hundreds of agencies or organizations in this region and nationwide. In addition, students may pursue opportunities in graduate school.

Ms. Dykes stated that, “Concord University students come to us in field placement, similar to an internship. Ultimately, we are trying to develop professional employee resources. We do have DHHR employees [from Concord] as a result of this relationship. Even if the students do not stay in West Virginia, we are still making a contribution to the field of social work through this scholarship program.”

“The social work profession in general in West Virginia over the last several years has had difficulty hiring and retaining professionally trained BSWs,” noted Mr. Bullington. “This program’s hope is to identify promising students and potential future employees.”

For information on majoring in social work, call 1-888-384-5249 or 1-304-384-5248 or e-mail admissions@concord.edu.

-CU-


PHOTO: Recipients of the Concord University Public Services Scholarship are Marsha K Edwards, Becky Lee Blankenship, Trenace Robin Rice, Vanessa Helbig and Melissa D. King.


PHOTO: DHHR employees Joe Bullington, community service manager in Pineville; Lorna Dykes, program manager in Princeton; and Jeanne Goan, social services supervisor in Wyoming County reviewed the applications for the scholarships during the selection process. Concord University Vice President for Admissions and Financial Aid Michael Curry also assisted with the selection process.

PO BOX 1000, VERMILLION ST., ATHENS, WV 24712.