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College Trains Social Workers

SASKATCHEWAN INDIAN      DECEMBER 1973      v03 n12 p09  
Saskatoon - Saskatchewan's only full-time social work program will get underway this January at the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian's Cultural College in Saskatoon.

The course, the first of its kind, was developed by the Cultural College to train Indian people as social workers and is the only one in the offering exclusively social work orientated classes.

Already the demand for graduates of the course is so great that virtually every one of the 22 students selected for the first course is guaranteed a job on graduation, according to Cultural College director Jack Sikand.

"The demand for social workers, in fact, exceeds the number of people we'll have graduating from the program over the next several years," he said.

Many of the students are already employed by their band councils and a number of others are expected to return to their reserves and work as probation officers, Mr. Sikand said.

The social workers course is part of what the College terms its Professional Development Services and is only one of the directions the College is moving in to develop specialized training for Indian people. All the courses take into consideration Indian traditions and mode of life, as well as the problems and aspirations, unique to the Indian people.

Special emphasis is laid on practical training and four months of the year-long course will involve the students working with various agencies such as family and child services, alcoholism programs, juvenile programs and community development programs. The instruction will assist in the integration of theory and practise.