Q&A

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Eligibility

No, only BSW candidates who are registered at an accredited BSW program in the New York City area are eligible for the dual BSW Scholars-Children’s Corps program in their junior year. For more information about this dual program, go the BSW webpage. However, BSW seniors and graduates are highly valued in child welfare and we encourage you to apply to the traditional Children’s Corps program.

Applicants must be U.S. citizens, nationals, permanent residents with green cards, or have received DACA with a non-expired work authorization card. 

To be eligible for consideration, individuals must have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college/university conferred by the time summer training begins in July.  For program specific details, please visit their corresponding pages.
-Children’s Corps
-BSW Scholars Program

While many of our Corps members are graduating seniors, Children’s Corps values applications from leaders of all backgrounds including applicants with BA and/or MA degrees and work experience including career changers. 

There is no age limit to apply to the program as long as the applicant meets all other eligibility requirements.

Application Process

If you are selected for an in-person interview (all interviews take place in New York City) OR waitlisted for an interview, you will be notified within 1-2 weeks after the application deadline. Applicants who are not selected or waitlisted for an interview, will not be notified. 

When thinking about applying to Children’s Corps, you should carefully consider the timeline associated with the deadline, ensuring you are available to attend the interviews and are able to make the decision to commit to the Corps by the confirmation deadline.

There are 2 admissions deadlines. Click here for the timeline for applications. 

Interested applicants should complete and submit the application from our website when available. All application materials must be submitted no later than 8:00 p.m. on the stated deadline. 

Your application is your opportunity to show us who you are and why you want to do this work. Please take the time to read the application thoroughly and write thoughtful responses. We don’t just want to know about your credentials, but rather who you are and what you have learned from past experiences. Remember to proofread and make sure you’ve answered what each question is asking. Read our Application Do’s and Don’ts. 

Deferment decisions are assessed on a case-by-case basis. Though rare, deferrals may be granted for admitted applicants who have serious emergencies or who have a unique opportunity that will significantly add to their value in the child welfare field. More information is provided when a deferral is requested.

Yes, we value participants who have reflected on their past application experiences and seek to re-apply. You may apply once per year.

Interview Process

The most promising applicants will be invited to a full-day, in-person interview in NYC only, which will include a group activity and discussion, an individual interview, and a written exercise.

Yes, at the present time, Children’s Corps interviews are only held in NYC. If you are coming from far away, you will get priority in choosing the date and time of your interview.

Unfortunately, at this time Children’s Corps is unable to finance travel expenses to interviews.

No, all interviews must be conducted in person.
Yes. If you are selected to be a member in the Corps, you will have the opportunity to talk to a current Corps member before making your decision.

Finalists will receive an official an email notification within 3 weeks after their interview date.

WHAT ABOUT NON FINALIST?

If you are selected to be a part of the Corps, you will need to accept or decline your selection into the program. Children’s Corps staff will share details with all finalized members in May about the placement process and summer training.

As part of the process, you will:

1) participate in a group interview
2) review a case scenario;
3) participate in an individual interview during which you will be asked questions to help us learn more about you and your commitment to working with children and families in the child welfare system;
4) ask the interview panel questions about the case you read;
5) develop a writing sample.

Compensation & Benefits

Children’s Corps does not pay for relocation or housing expenses.

At the present time Children’s Corps is not able to assist with student loans, future educational expenses, loan cancellation or loan forgiveness.

At this time Children’s Corps is not able to provide any stipends or reimbursements for the participation in the Summer Training Academy, but we do provide a monthly metro card. We understand that managing this transition requires careful and proactive financial planning for many candidates, however, as many of our current members and alumni will tell you, it is possible to plan accordingly.

Salaries vary by agency and range from $34,000 to $42,000 for undergraduate degrees, and $38,500 to $46,000 for MSWs, Mental Health Counseling or related Masters degrees. Corps members are paid directly by the agencies for which they work and receive the same salaries, health coverage, and retirement benefits as other entry-level caseworkers at their agency.

Placement

We currently place Corps members in preventive care, residential care, and foster care agencies throughout New York City’s five boroughs in addition to Westchester County.

When placing Corps members, we take several things into consideration: your program and location preference,  your expertise and professional development needs, in addition to the agency’s needs. We will consider your preferences but cannot guarantee that we will be able to meet your requests.  Once accepted into the Children’s Corps program, Corps members should be prepared to work at any agency they are placed in.

We strive to guarantee every Corps member a placement, however it is possible that due to unanticipated factors such as budgetary constraints on our agency partners, placement may be in a different agency than originally assigned.

Children’s Corps members are expected to secure their own housing arrangements. Many Corps members meet and connect with one another before and during Summer Training Academy and connect with others who are seeking housing as well. Upon acceptance, you can work with staff members and other incoming Corps members to find housing. 

Below are a few home-finding resources:
Gypsie Housing
Queer Housing
Zillow
Roomi

Having a driver’s license is not mandatory but can come in handy. Depending on where you are placed, you may be asked to transport children and families to and from various destinations.

Commitment

Corps members begin with the Summer Training Academy, which starts at the very end of June or early July (depending on the calendar year). Members will begin employment between the completion of training and the day after Labor Day. Officially, the two-year commitment begins the day the members start work at their placement agency and ends two years after.

No. Children’s Corps members make a two-year commitment to the program, the provider agencies, and their colleagues as well as to the children and families they serve.

Children’s Corps members are expected to commit full-time to the two-year placement. Due to the intensive nature of the work, Corps members are not encouraged to attend graduate school or engage in any other part-time job.

You certainly can! You may also be interested in funds that will be available to you for graduate school, not to mention the opportunity for promotion, salary increases, and job security. There may also be opportunities for loan forgiveness.

We hope so! Upon completion of the 2-years, you will graduate from Children’s Corps program and we will hold a celebratory event. You will join other graduates and become part of the Children’s Corps Alumni Association, a rich and growing network.

Training & Support

Children’s Corps Summer Training Academy is held at Columbia School of Social Work, located in West Harlem, NY.

Children’s Corps provides holistic and comprehensive training and support throughout your two year commitment. 

The components:

  • Agency visit: Before the Summer Training Academy, Corps members will visit their respective agencies, where they will meet administrators, staff and the supervisors with whom they will be working. They will be given an orientation and receive documentation familiarizing them with the agency’ policies, procedures, and values. Fingerprinting and additional screenings will take place at this time. This may occur during Summer Training as well, depending upon the agency.
  • Summer Training Academy: We operate a four-week intensive summer training in New York City that addresses the theoretical and best-practice practice models of child welfare.
  • Ongoing coaching, mentoring, and professional development: Throughout the two year commitment, Children’s Corps members receive ongoing support from FCFC staff, their CC peers and professional mentors. Children’s Corps staff are available to provide one-on-one support as needed and group support on a monthly basis at Children’s Corps meetings.

Yes. Given the ambitious goals of preparing members to be effective caseworkers, members must attend the entire four weeks of training. Corps members who experience an unforeseen personal or family emergency during training must work with FCFC staff to find a suitable solution.

BSW Scholars Program

If you discontinue your membership with the Dual Program during or after your senior year, you will no longer be considered Children’s Corps member, your position with the Corps will not be held and therefore your opportunity for employment with one of the partner agencies will be forfeited.

If you are a BSW senior you should apply through the regular Children’s Corps program using the Children’s Corps application. You are NOT eligible for the BSW Scholars program.

Candidates who accept the dual program’s offer will be required to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) outlining the terms, values and expectations of the DUAL program.

Signature of this document demonstrates the candidate’s commitment to the DUAL program for three years which includes:

  • 1 year internship with NYC’s Administration for Children’s Services while completing all BSW coursework
  • 4 weeks of unpaid Children’s Corps training at our Summer Training Academy in July
  • 2-year post-graduate commitment to working with children and families in one of Children’s Corps’ partner agencies
Yes! We believe that the more information you have before making such an important decision, the better. We can put you in touch with a current scholar and a Children’s Corps member who has completed the two years of work.

Once you are placed at one of Children’s Corps’ partner agencies you are considered an employee of that agency. As an employee of that agency you will be treated like all other employees and subject to all the responsibilities as well as the rewards of that position. Children’s Corps asks for a 2 year commitment to the children and families you serve but you may remain at the agency for as long as you like. Once you have completed your 2 year commitment you will transition to becoming a Children’s Corps alumni and join our other graduates in our Children’s Corps Alumni Association.

Children’s Corps members are expected to commit full-time to the two-year placement. Due to the intensive nature of the work, Corps members are not encouraged to attend graduate school or engage in any other part-time job in their first year on the job. We do have Corps members who take part time classes in their second year but this must be discussed with the placement agency in advance to request any necessary accommodations.

• You must be a matriculated BSW student at a participating academic institution entering your senior year in the fall. For program specific details, please visit the BSW Scholars program page.

No

References can be professional or academic. If you do not have a professional reference, then you may provide 2 academic references. At least one must be from a social work faculty member at your school.

BSW Scholar candidates will be notified one week after their interview.

-Will I be expected or required to use my own vehicle to travel between agencies or to home visits? If yes, am I reimbursed for mileage? What about subway fare?

– What is the field educator’s expectation for scheduling internship hours?

– What kind of preparation for dealing with these populations might be helpful to me?

What is the agency dress code?

-Are there accommodations made for personal or family emergencies? If I have to take time off to address these crises, how will that be handled?

-Of course, anything that you have prepared or that comes up for you during the interview!

A minimum of 14 hours per week is required for the CWSP. You are obligated to meet the requirements of your school, so if your school requires more than 14 hours, you must do it and you will be able to complete ALL of the hours in your child welfare field placement.

Yes. For the internship at ACS, attendance at orientation and subsequent trainings is mandatory and will be counted toward your required field placement hours. Upon graduation, you will attend the Children’s Corps Summer Training Academy before starting work at the child welfare agency where you will be employed.

That depends. Your time will be organized based on the needs of the clients you serve and your learning needs. Time will also be scheduled for individual and group supervision. You will be expected to be “in the office” for at least 7 hours, 2 days per week.
Depending on the agency where you work, you may be eligible for partial scholarship funding for your MSW upon completing your probation in the agency. Most schools will still honor your advanced standing after the 2 years is up as well.

Two years. This is a requirement of both the BSW Scholars Program and the Children’s Corps program. Upon completing the 2-year commitment, you can choose to continue working at the agency and will transition to becoming a Children’s Corps alumni.

You will meet with the Professional Development ACS staff at the slots that they have in each borough.  The Administration for Children’s Services will take some time to get to know you and make a match based on your interest and skills, your preferred location if possible, and the available placements. ACS has programs ranging from child protection to family support services and you will be assigned to a team that will provide valuable learning opportunities.

NO – you only need to complete the application that is specifically designated for the BSW Scholar program. You can find the application by visiting our BSW Scholars page.