Field-Related Programs with Funding

The Steve Hicks School of Social Work offers opportunities for student funding through the following field-related training programs:

Building Excellence in Autism and Disability Scholars Program (BEADS)
  • The BEADS Scholars Program aims to increase the number of professional social workers in the field of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and developmental disabilities.
  • The BEADS Program is open to BSW and MSSW students and provides an award of $3,000 to BSW and first-year MSSW students, and of $5,000 for final field MSSW students. Students must complete a BEADS field placement, attend at least three BEADS workshops during the course of their studies, and attend two disability-related events or complete one course (“Introduction to Disability Studies” or “Developmental Disabilities and Self Advocacy”) in the Disability Studies Portfolio Program.
  • More information: contact professor Sandy Magaña,, download this document (pdf).
CapCityKids (CCK) Scholars Program
  • The CCK Scholars Program is a joint effort of CapCityKids (a nonprofit 501c3 organization), the Austin Independent School District (AISD), and the Steve Hicks School of Social Work to provide preventative services to AISD students at risk of or experiencing homelessness. The program maintains a field unit within AISD with an internship coordinator and field instructor dedicated full-time to supervise CCK Scholars.
  • The CCK Scholars Program is open to MSSW students and provides 10 + awards annually. Most awards go to first-field interns; final-field interns interview competitively. The award is $1,500 and comes with placement in the CCK field unit.
  • More information: contact professor Tanya Voss,, visit CapCityKids.
Child Welfare Education Collaboration (CWEC)
  • CWEC is a partnership between the Steve Hicks School of Social Work and Texas Child Protective Services (CPS) that prepares students for child welfare practice.
  • CWEC is open to BSW and MSSW students. Up to 21 awards ranging from $5,000 to $7,000 are provided each year. CWEC Scholars receive priority in assignment to a child welfare field placement and agree to work for CPS for a specific amount of time after graduating.
  • More information: contact professor Chris Johnson at, visit the CWEC page.
Fernandez International Field Award
  • This award provides financial support for students who are selected for international field placements with the goal of making international field more accessible to a wider range of students.
  • A total of $5,000 is awarded each year to two MSSW students, based on financial need. Students apply for this award when they submit their applications for international field in August. The assistant deans for field education and master programs select awardees based on presented financial need. Awards are offered at the same time that international field placements are offered, allowing awardees to factor the funding into their decision.  Awards are granted at the end of the fall semester upon successful completion of the fall international field seminar.
  • More information: contact professor Tanya Voss,
Gerontology Resources and the Aging Community in Education program (GRACE)
  • The GRACE Program, which is supported by the St. David’s Foundation, prepares students to work with older adults.
  • The GRACE Program is open to MSSW students and provides 24 awards of $7,500 per year. Students must complete a GRACE field placement. Funding is divided equally between students in first field and final field. Students may do both field placements in GRACE settings and apply for funding each time. Students are also required to attend at least five GRACE educational events over the course of their studies. GRACE students may apply for an all-expenses paid trip to the Aging in America Conference, which occurs each spring. At commencement, students receive the designation of “GRACE Scholar.”
  • More information: contact professor Sarah Swords,, download this document (pdf).
Integrated Behavioral Health Scholars Program (IBHS)
  • The IBHS Program, which is funded through a HRSA grant, is a collaboration between multiple colleges at The University of Texas at Austin, and is administered through the Dell Medical School Department of Psychiatry. The program’s goal is to build a diverse and culturally competent behavioral health workforce with expertise in delivering integrated behavioral health care, particularly to underserved populations in Texas.
  • The IBHS Program is open to MSSW students and provides 12 awards of $10,000 each year. Scholars receive funding and approximately 30 hours of required training during their extended clinical final field placement. Scholars are placed at IBHS field sites in the spring prior to final field. The Office of Field Education provides more information about the early selection interview process at the February orientation to final field, 11 months prior to the spring internship start.
  • More information: contact professor Robin Smith at
Leben Scholars Program
  • This program is funded through the Norma and Clay Leben Endowment for Excellence in Play Therapy Methods, which seeks to enhance educational opportunities for social workers in the area of play therapy.
  • This program is open to MSSW students and offers three awards of $2,250 every year. Students must be selected for the extended field placement at the Austin Child Guidance Center. This placement requires seminar hours at Austin Child Guidance Center in the fall and extended final field placement in the spring. Students are required to attend the following professional development events for free: Norma Leben Play Therapy Workshop, Texas School Social Work Conference, and Annual Leben Play Therapy Symposium. Students must contact the MSSW graduate advisor to receive academic credit hours for the fall semester.
  • More information: contact professor Sarah Sloan at
Main Street Renewal Program
  • This is a pilot program between the Steve Hicks School of Social Work and Main Street Renewal (MSR), a for-profit leasing company renting to low and moderate-income individuals and families in 15 states across the country, including a division supporting residents utilizing Section 8 vouchers.  The goal is to assist residents experiencing financial instability and at risk of eviction/homelessness.
  • This program is open to BSW and MSSW students, and offers four awards of $2,500 each year. Students must complete their field placement at MSR-Austin, where they assist MSR residents with accessing local resources to address a wide array of psychosocial challenges contributing to their financial instability.
  • More information: contact professor Joan Asseff at
St. David’s Foundation Bilingual Social Work Scholars program
  • The program aims to prepare social workers that provide culturally competent health and mental health services to Spanish-speaking clients in Central Texas.
  • The program is open to MSSW students in the Clinical track, and offers up to 10 awards of $10,000 for one or two years, depending on the program of work. To be eligible, applicants must be newly admitted, be fluent in Spanish and English, and submit an application that includes a two-page essay and resume. Finalists are interviewed to assess Spanish fluency; both native and non-native Spanish speakers are encouraged to apply. Students must complete a local internship in which they use their bilingual skills.
  • More information: contact Ramón Gómez at
UT Health Education and Leadership Scholars Program (UT HEALS)
  • The UT HEALS program, which is jointly funded by the Council on Social Work Education and the National Association of Social Workers, aims to prepare students to work in the healthcare field.
  • This program is open to BSW and MSSW students, and offers four awards of $4,000 each year. Students must complete internships in healthcare or health -elated agencies and express a commitment to practicing in a health-related setting, including medical health, mental health, public health and healthcare policy. Students are required to take the 3-credit hour elective course “Transformative Teams in Healthcare,” course, which offers a unique opportunity to learn in an interprofessional classroom with students from the Steve Hicks School of Social Work, Dell Medical School, the College of Pharmacy and the School of Nursing. Students also receive funding to attend Healthcare Policy Conference in Washington, D.C. in the spring.
  • More information: contact professor Dede Sparks,