A Human Services Professional is a term for people who hold professional and paraprofessional jobs in diverse settings. Human Services is a pathway within the discipline of psychology. It is a broad field covering a number of careers, all having one thing in common—helping people meet their basic needs which cannot be met without outside assistance, allowing people and communities to function at an optimum level. The human services field includes a variety of job titles: including caseworker, program coordinator, outreach counselor, crisis counselor, and victim advocates to name a few.
Human Service professionals work in practice settings focusing on social problems impacting marginalized and oppressed populations. The primary goal of human services is a commitment to helping people develop the necessary skills to become self-sufficient and fully functioning (to the best of their ability), personally and within society.
What Will I Learn?
At Joliet Junior College, you can get an associate degree or work toward a bachelor’s or master’s. JJC offers easy, convenient transfer agreements with local colleges and universities so you won’t have to worry about the logistics - instead, you can focus on what really matters: your future career.
Why Is Human Services Needed?
All human beings have basic needs, such as the need for food, shelter, and safety. People also have social needs, such as the need for interpersonal connection, love, and community. People have psychological needs, such as the need to deal with trauma from past abuse, or the psychological ramifications of enduring a disaster, such as a tornado or hurricane.
Human service agencies and professionals come into the picture when people find themselves confronted with barriers and cannot get their basic needs met. They also assist when people cannot find their own resources for overcoming obstacles that they have encountered.
What Degree / Certificate Will I Receive?
What Are My Career Opportunities?
The following are examples of occupational titles of Human Service workers:
- Case Worker
- Residential Counselor
- Youth Worker
- Behavioral Management Aide
- Case Management Aide
- Alcohol Counselor
- Adult Day Care Worker
- Drug Abuse Counselor
- Life Skills Instructor
- Social Service Aide
- Probation Officer
- Child Advocate
- Gerontology Aide
- Juvenile Court Liaison
- Group Home Worker
- Child Abuse Worker
- Crisis Intervention Counselor
- Community Organizer
- Social Work Assistant
- Psychological Aide
What is Unique About the Human Services Program?
Once you have earned your AAS degree or Certificate in Human Services there are several options:
You can find a job in the field and start working right after graduation
- Many agencies are looking to hire current students in Human Services and students who have an AAS degree or certificate in Human Services.
- Check with Human Services Coordinator and the College Central Network for employment opportunities
You can earn certifications to increase career opportunities
- Applicants holding an associate degree can obtain credentials through an independent review of their qualifications. A certification verifies that a professional has met a certain set of criteria for a skill or job as measured by taking an exam.
- HS-BCP- Human Services-Board Certified Practitioner
- ICDVP- Illinois Certified Domestic Violence Professional
- ICPAIP- Illinois Certified Partner Abuse Intervention
You can continue your education and transfer into a Social Work program at a four year university