- Associated Press - Tuesday, November 3, 2015

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (AP) - Marshall University has added a new master’s program in social work.

Marshall’s governing board approved the advanced degree program last week. The program’s launch will be the fall 2016 semester.

Interim President Gary White said the social work program will produce graduates to serve the region’s rural communities.

He says they’ll be at the forefront as West Virginia deals with many serious economic and rural health concerns.

Social workers are trained to work with addiction, mental and emotional health, the elderly, veterans and members of the military, among others.

Dean Michael W. Prewitt of Marshall’s College of Health Professions said the MSW program would be among the most affordable, ensuring that many graduates can start careers in West Virginia and the Appalachian region.

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