Educational Paths in Preparation for a Career in Service Coordination
Service coordination is a rewarding, challenging field with opportunities for career advancement. Service coordinators play an important role in the lives of the individuals they serve. As the primary point of contact between the individual and the “systems,” service coordinators manage a full range of responsibilities.
Is Service Coordination a Good Fit?
The best service coordinators are
- good communicators and
A typical work-week for a service coordinator includes
- spending a majority of the time working in the field,
- coordinating activities,
- convening and facilitating meetings and
- variety in everyday activities—no two days are alike.
Because of the significant responsibility assumed by service coordinators, renewed effort has been directed at ensuring that current and future service coordinators are well-prepared to take on their roles as the “single point of accountability." The Single Point of Accountability Initiative encourages institutions of higher learning to enhance their class offerings and provide rigorous training specifically directed to this purpose. Bachelor's degree programs in social work and psychology at the institutions listed below are committed to fulfilling this goal by offering additional classes in service coordination. In addition to classroom instruction, students interested in service coordination complete field placements or internships at agencies serving children with serious emotional disturbance and adults with serious mental illness. These placements are supervised by experienced service coordinators and assist students to get a feel for the work of service coordination.
Paths to Becoming a Service Coordinator
- Earn a high school diploma and select social work or psychology as an undergraduate major
- Earn an associate's degree and complete a four-year degree in social work or psychology
- Earn a bachelor's degree in social work with service coordination specialty
- Earn a bachelor's degree in psychology with a service coordination concentration
- Complete a bachelor's degree in either social work or psychology and complete the service coordination post-graduate course.
Paid internships or field placements are available during a student's senior year through numerous agencies contracted with the Allegheny County Department of Human Services Office of Behavioral Health to provide service coordination. To be eligible for a paid internship, students must have completed the bachelors-level social work or psychology service coordination specialty degree or concentration from the University of Pittsburgh, Chatham University or Carlow University. For more information contact your academic advisor.
Institutions of Higher Learning Committed to Careers in Service Coordination
Single Point of Accountability Initiative
Information about the transformation of service coordination through the Single Point of Accountability Initiative.