Publications and Research

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 2019


While the collaborative trend among professional social workers and librarians continues to grow, literature about the utilization of student social workers partnering with libraries is non-existent. Over 64,000 students are currently enrolled in M.S.W. programs through the United States and nearly all are required to complete approximately 900 hours of fieldwork. Such students provide the skills, knowledge, and values that can help take diversity in public libraries to the next level. Public librarians play a critical role in advocating for social justice and change. By reaching out to MSW programs, they invite budding social workers to help advance tolerance for a diversity of people and needs in public libraries. While the professional values and ethics of both librarianship and social work have a strong overlap, librarians need to invite social work students to partner with them; particularly as libraries are still considered non-traditional points of social service delivery. MSW students can assist libraries to expand programming, strengthen outreach, and enhance the professional development of both social workers and librarians to the benefit of patrons.


This is the author's accepted manuscript of an article originally published in Public Services Quarterly, available at



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