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DCFS Scholarship Program

The Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) Scholarship Program prepares social workers for child welfare practice in Illinois.

Scholarship information

This program provides a $5000/semester ($10,000/year for a maximum of 2 years) scholarship for students who commit to working in a private non-profit child welfare agency in Illinois after graduation. 

DCFS Scholars will gain expertise in best practices on family and strength-based, trauma-informed approaches that support children and families that have experienced or at risk of abuse and neglect.


  • You must be a junior or senior in the child welfare program or a full time master’s student.
  • If you are selected as a DCFS Scholar, you are required to successfully complete SOCW 416 Child Welfare Issues and Trends (DCFS University Partnership Program) and maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0.
  • Recipients must work 18 months post-degree in a private child welfare agency in Illinois. Recipients that do not fulfill the employment requirement are obligated to repay the amount of their scholarship
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