Loyola University Chicago

School of Social Work

Migration Studies Track

The United Nations High Commissioner on Refugees reported that the number of displaced people is at its highest ever, surpassing even post-World War II numbers, with 84 million displaced persons worldwide in 2021. Similarly, the number of international migrants is greater today than at any other time in history. The United Nations International Organization on Migration reported 281 million international migrants in the world in 2020, equating to 3.6 percent of the global population.  Nowhere is the trend of international migration more marked than in the United States, the country with the largest immigrant population in the world. The United States is home to 45 million foreign-born individuals, constituting nearly 14 percent of the U.S. population. In response to these global trends and the associated human, social, political, and spiritual challenges that migration presents, the Loyola University School of Social Work have responded with the development of a Migration Studies track. This track is designed to prepare social work professionals for international, transnational, and domestic practice with internally displaced persons, immigrants, and refugees.  ‚Äč

Application for the Migration Studies Track is required; the deadline to apply is December 1st. Migration courses are taken in conjunction with specialization requirements. This program is compatible with the Micro Practice Specialization.

Required Courses: 

3 courses are required and can be taken during any year of study.

  • SOWK 730: Migration Dynamics and U.S. Social Policy (Spring only)
  • SOWK 731: Social Work Practice with Refugees and Immigrants (Spring only)
  • SOWK 732: Migration, Social Justice, and Human Rights (Fall only)
  • SOWK 733: North American Migration Dynamics & Policy (Summer in Mexico only; the course is taught in English by an SSW professor and is the equivalent of SOWK 730)

Study Abroad Internship (Optional):

The study abroad program in Mexico (classes and field) complements this track but is not required. For information and application forms, see Study Abroad: Mexico. The Mexico internship can be completed as a 1st or 2nd-year internship (except for students pursuing a Schools specialization; a school internship must be done in the U.S.). Interested students will need to complete the application materials and be interviewed by Dr. Maria Vidal de Haymes. Information and application materials can be retrieved from Study Abroad: Mexico. A minimum of conversational Spanish is required. Students who want to pursue an internship in Mexico will meet for a second in-person interview with Dr. Vidal de Haymes.