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Stanislaus State Receives Funding For Social Work Program
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The San Joaquin Valley has the lowest number of mental health professionals per population in California; the ratio of social workers to people is about 50 percent below the state average.

Research also shows that in 2019, nearly two-thirds of California adults with a mental illness and two-thirds of adolescents with a major depressive episode went without treatment.

To help address the issue, Representative Josh Harder (CA-9), a member of the House Appropriations Committee, announced on Sept. 22 that he had secured over $1.6 million to expand Stanislaus State’s social work education program. This funding will address critical shortages of mental health providers by increasing the number of students in Stanislaus State’s social work program. Specifically, the funding will increase the number of supervising social workers in area facilities as well as provide student stipends and paid internships. Stan State’s Master of Social Work program operates at both the Turlock and Stockton campuses.

“We desperately need more mental health providers in San Joaquin County,” said Rep. Harder. “I’m proud to bring home $1.6 million for Stan State’s social work education program so we can train and retain more social workers locally to help our families. Wait times are way too long to get our loved ones the mental health care they need and this expansion is an important step in fixing this crisis.”

“Our region faces critical shortages in health care and behavioral health care. Stan State has been deeply committed to addressing the needs in our region in these important areas. This opportunity will allow us to expand our ability to train and place qualified students in critical jobs to serve the health care needs of our community,” said Richard Ogle, Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs at Stanislaus State. “This money is a testament to the strong working relationship between Stan State and our community partners and will allow us to expand our capacity to train and place our students in critical jobs in these areas.”

This announcement came shortly after the news that Harder had also helped secure $3.8 million for Delta College to expand its nursing program. Rep. Harder has been a strong advocate for expanding access to health care throughout the Central Valley.