Human Services

Department of Human Services

Human Services Logo

Students who seek professional training in career areas such as alcohol and drug counseling, youth services, mental health, victim/survivor services, gerontology, and other social service professions will find the Human Services Department has a program to meet their needs. Current nation-wide trends are to upgrade the qualifications and education of human service workers. Kansas now requires a four-year degree in order to become licensed as an addiction counselor. The Human  Services Department offers a program that meets this need as well as address the increasing demand for knowledge in all areas of human service.


The mission of the Human Services Department is to provide students with the knowledge and skills to become effective, ethical, and compassionate human service professionals who engage in creative approaches to social change and advocacy to meet diverse individual and societal needs.

Why Major in Human Services at Washburn?

One advantage that Washburn offers is small class size and thus more attention can be given to the individual student. Each student in the department is assigned a faculty advisor. Each semester students meet with their departmental advisor to plan their coursework for the next semester. The success of our majors in acquiring jobs in human service agencies is an indication of the strength of the curriculum at Washburn. Internships in a wide variety of human service agencies in the community provide students with a strong experiential learning opportunity during the course of their study. Internships are arranged in consultation with the faculty advisor. Field trips are an integral part of certain courses and may vary from visits to local agencies to trips of several days duration to human service conferences around the country.


The Human Services major at Washburn will prepare students to work in fields that are focused on providing services to people. Students can work with many age groups: children, youth, or the elderly. Students may specialize in: addictions, mental health services, domestic violence, victims of crime, homelessness, at-risk youth programs, or gerontology.

As students complete the core courses in human services, they will develop skills in interviewing, interpersonal communication, individual and family assessment, group dynamics and community organization. Associate's degree students are required to complete two internships, while Bachelor's degree students will complete four internships in agencies related to their area of interest. The practical experience obtained during a Human Services internship will help the student implement and practice the skills necessary in their professional career.

Some Career Options with a Degree in Human Services

  • Licensed Addiction Counselor
  • Mental Health Worker
  • Agency Volunteer Coordinator
  • Youth Service Worker
  • Community Support Worker
  • Prevention Specialist
  • Case Manager
  • Victims Advocate
  • Community Outreach Worker

Related links and Social Justice Websites

Contact Us

Washburn University
Human Services Department
Benton Hall Room 311
1700 SW College Ave
Topeka, KS 66621

Phone: 785.670.2116
Fax: 785.670.1027