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Program Description

Whether you are a recent high school graduate or an adult student with an interest in social work, substance abuse counseling, early childhood education, or inclusive special education, the Human Services A.S. will be of interest to you. Upon completion of your A.S. degree, you will be prepared to obtain an entry-level job in a setting related to your specialty area, or you may choose to continue your education through transfer to a four-year institution.

There are four specialty options in the Human Services A.S.: Alcohol and Substance Abuse Counseling, Social Work, Inclusive Special Education, and Early Childhood Education.

All students will take two introductory courses specific to the specialization they select.  Students planning to transfer after graduation will take four 3-credit courses and one 3-credit fieldwork course.  Students planning to obtain an entry-level job following graduation will take three 3-credit courses and two 3-credit fieldwork courses in their chosen specialization.

A personal interview may be required before you are admitted to the Human Services program. If you choose to transfer into the Human Services program from another Onondaga curriculum, you must have at least a 2.0 cumulative average. Your academic and professional competence will be periodically reviewed by the faculty. Enrollment and continuation in the Human Services program are subject to faculty approval. Your academic and professional competence will be periodically reviewed by the faculty. ln order to graduate, you must achieve a grade of C or better in the required Human Services courses.

Special program costs include bus or car expenses for transportation to and from the field work sites. You may be required to have a medical examination, a tuberculin test, a background check, and fingerprinting before beginning your field work internship.

Specialization: Alcohol and Substance Abuse Counseling

The electives in this area are designed to provide an understanding of bio-psychosocial considerations in alcohol and substance abuse. Other areas of focus are the disease model and harm reduction concepts of alcoholism and addictions treatment, and the development of specific skills in providing individual and group counseling for addicted populations. Four out of a possible five electives are required for this specialization.

Courses within this area may be used toward the requirements to qualify as a Credentialed Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Counselor (CASAC) in New York State, or for transfer to a four-year college

Specialization: Social Work

If you choose to focus on social work, you will be prepared for initial level professional employment as a social work assistant, case manager, counselor, or other position in a human service or social service agency.

You may also choose to transfer to a four-year college to obtain a bachelor’s degree in social work, human services, psychology, sociology, vocational rehabilitation or similar program.

Onondaga also offers a certificate program in Human Services.  All of the credits earned in the Human Services Certificate can be applied to the Human Services A.S. degree, Social Work or Alcohol Substance Abuse Counseling specialization. See a Human Services advisor for more information.

Specialization: Inclusive Special Education

Completing this specialization will prepare you for employment as a teaching assistant in private, parochial, or public schools, and to work with students with special needs in an inclusive or special education setting. Completing courses within this area meets the New York state requirement for teaching assistant certification.

You may also choose to transfer to a four-year teacher preparation program to pursue teacher certification in Special Education.

Specialization: Early Childhood Education

If you are interested in becoming an assistant or head teacher in a program working with children from birth to Grade 3, you will want to choose the Early Childhood Education option. You will be prepared to work as a teaching assistant in a public school, pre-kindergarten or Head Start program, or as a head teacher in an early childhood center, or as a family child care provider or nanny.

Completing 9-12 credits of courses within this area meets the qualifications for a head teacher required by the New York State Department of Social Services Day Care Licensing Regulations. Courses within this area also meet the formal training requirement for the Child Development Associate (C.D.A.) credential awarded by the Council for Early Childhood Professional Recognition in Washington, D. C.

You may also choose to transfer to a four-year teacher preparation program to pursue Early Childhood teacher certification, or a bachelor's degree program in Child Care and Development or Early Care and Education Leadership.

Onondaga also offers a certificate program in Early Child Care.  All of the credits earned in the Early Child Care Certificate can be applied to the Human Services A.S. degree. 

Graduation Requirement:

Students must earn a grade of C or better in each HUM or EDU course in order to graduate.