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As part of your application for admission to the Anne and Henry Zarrow School of Social Work, please
address the five areas listed below (maximum 250 words for each response). These answers will be used
both to assess your writing and critical thinking skills and to aid the Admissions Committee in making a
decision about your application. Note that some of the questions contain multiple parts, so be sure to
read and answer the questions fully.
1. What motivates you to pursue a Master in Social Work degree at this time?
2. The profession of social work is committed to social, political, and economic justice, the
alleviation of poverty and oppression, and the reduction of social problems. Please choose one
social problem of concern to you and explain how it relates to social, political, and economic
justice. Utilize the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Code of Ethics to help you
understand the concepts and support your discussion. How can your unique contributions to the
profession of social work advance justice and help those affected by this social problem?
3. Describe your most significant experiences and achievements in school and work (volunteer or
paid). Be sure to identify any strategies that you found helpful in overcoming any challenges
that you encountered.
4. In regards to diversity, the NASW Code of Ethics provides explicit guidance on behavioral
expectations for social workers that begin during your time in the MSW program and extend
throughout your career as a professional social worker. If there are terms below that you are
unfamiliar with, please take the time to research what they mean in the context of social work
values and ethics in order to properly respond to the question. Consider the two ethical
principles below:
Discrimination 4.02.1
Social workers should not practice, condone, facilitate, or collaborate with any form of
discrimination on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, color, sex, sexual
orientation, age, marital status, political belief, religion, or mental or physical disability.
Cultural Competence 1.05.3
Social Workers should obtain education about and seek to understand the nature of
social diversity and oppression with respect to race, ethnicity, national origin, color, sex,
sexual orientation, age, marital status, political belief, religion, and mental or physical
(a) Please explain your comfort level in upholding these ethical principles by providing
examples from your educational and/or professional career. Discuss any challenges you may
have in upholding these ethical principles as well as how you plan to address those
(b) Social workers by nature must be willing to work with, and respect, diversity and differences
among those they serve in practice. Social workers must actively work to develop and refine
a habit of cultural humility throughout their career. Please briefly describe what this
statement means to you and how you plan to develop your humility to work with diverse
peoples, groups, and communities that are markedly different from yourself.
5. Adding a new role to your life as a graduate student involves planning and preparation for
success. Please describe a specific plan to balance your work, education, and personal life, as
well as practice self-care as you engage in graduate study. Considering you may spend 20-36
hours per week at the practicum site, describe how you will adjust your school/work/life
balance for the foundation year(s) as well as the concentration year(s) of the MSW program?