School of Social and Behavioral Sciences Welcomes a New Face this Year

North Central welcomes Mallory Knipe, the new social work program director, to the School of Social and Behavioral Sciences. Photo provided by Mallory Knipe.

North Central welcomes Mallory Knipe, the new social work program director, to the School of Social and Behavioral Sciences. Photo provided by Mallory Knipe.

New Social Work Professor Mallory Knipe comes back to her roots

Mallory Knipe is North Central’s new social work program director. She started on campus at the beginning of the 2017 fall semester.

Knipe had been working in higher education at Wisconsin state universities for a couple of years before choosing to apply for a position at North Central. While working at the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire last year, she was told about North Central possibly having an open social work teaching position for 2017.

“I had been interested in teaching at North Central for a while. I really desired to teach in a setting where I could incorporate faith with my teaching and emphasize the Christian faith within the institution,” Knipe said. “That’s obviously something that I didn’t have in Eau Claire.”

Knipe chose to pursue her higher education at Trinity Bible College. “I played basketball here [North Central] when I was at Trinity. I was on the basketball team, so we came here a lot. I was very familiar with the campus, so it just kind of fit,” Knipe said.

Knipe was born in the Twin Cities and had been looking for a job that could bring her back to the area for a while. “I had been looking at coming back to my roots,” Knipe said.

Knipe earned her Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Biblical Studies from Trinity Bible College. Continuing her education, she completed her Master of Social Work (MSW) at the University of Oklahoma and is currently a doctoral candidate at the University of St. Catherine – St. Thomas.

Social work is North Central’s third fastest growing program on campus, according to North Central’s admissions department. “We are a very new major. We have only been accredited for a couple years now, so we are still kind of in that stage where we are building the program,” Knipe said.

“What North Central’s PR team has found when they go to youth conventions and state fairs to promote the school is that the two main programs that students were considering that we didn’t have were nursing and social work,” Knipe said.

North Central adding a social work program will potentially allow more high school students to choose North Central. “Now that we have a social work major and more students are finding out that we have it; I think that our program will continue to grow,” Knipe said.

According to Knipe, some of the most prominent career fields for a social work major are foster care or adoption agencies, school social work, criminal justice and clinical social work.

“A lot of students are finding that they can go into clinical counseling if they go on to get their MSW. That’s what people don’t realize, is that you can be a clinical counselor in social work,” Knipe said. Students can go on to get their master’s degree in one year after getting their BSW from North Central. When one achieves their MSW they can go on to work in clinics as a therapist.

Next year the School of Social and Behavioral Sciences is planning to start a social work student association. “Psychology students currently have Psi Chi,” Knipe said. Psi Chi is an honors society for psychology students.

“Social work students can be a part of Psi Chi,” Knipe said. “But now social work will have their own program specifically for social work students to be able to do special trainings, bring in guest speakers, have conversations about difficult issues, do fund raising for certain projects or just get involved more in the community.”

About the author: Meghan Bishop