Major in Human Services - Bachelor of Arts or Sciences

Make a Difference in the Lives of Others with a Degree in Human Services

Gwynedd Mercy University’s bachelor’s degree in Human Services can help you turn your natural empathetic abilities into marketable skills that can make a difference in peoples’ lives. Our interdisciplinary program draws on social work, sociology, and psychology and includes real-world experience to give you a very practical degree. In this program, you’ll learn critical intervention techniques and develop skills in counseling, ethical decision making, community organizing, and leading.

The GMercyU Difference

"I never expected coming here to change me so much. ... The human services program at GMercyU beautifully mirrors the University’s mission that embodies the mercy tradition of caring for others." - Christina Harris '16

Gwynedd Mercy University has several distinctive educational benefits when compared to other schools offering a similar Human Services degree in PA.

Study Human Services at a university with a deep commitment to service 

  • Personalized attention with our low 10:1 student-to-faculty ratio and supportive environment 
  • Courses taught by faculty members with direct work experience in the field (no teaching assistants)
  • Degree options that prepare you to immediately enter the workforce or  pursue a graduate degree
  • Internships that give your hands-on experience before you graduate

Get started on your career right after graduation

Students who enter the field directly will likely hold entry-level positions within a community agency. Common areas of work are children and youth, working with the elderly, homeless outreach and services, adoption and foster care, drug and alcohol facilities, individuals with intellectual disabilities, and mental health.

Within these fields, students will use skills developed throughout the degree program such as writing social histories, assessing the needs of clients, accessing community resources, and using professional helping skills to provide personal support. Theory courses assist students in understanding individuals within a social context and the effects of a person’s environment on their functioning. 

Pursue an Advanced Degree

According to a 2014 report from the Education Advisory Board, more than 25% of new Bachelor of Arts in Human Services graduates immediately pursue graduate degrees. As a human services major, your bachelor’s degree will provide an excellent foundation for a Master’s in Social Work, Counseling, School Counseling, or Applied Behavioral Analysis. 

With a broader curriculum than a Bachelor’s in Social Work, alumni of our program have had great success with graduate school admissions, many going on to top-ranking programs at universities such as:

  • Columbia
  • Penn State
  • Temple University
  • Tulane University
  • University of New Orleans
  • University of Southern California
  • Villanova University
  • West Chester University
  • Widener University

Full-Time Faculty, Full-Time Attention

The Program Coordinator for Human Services is the full-time faculty member assigned to the program. The program also utilizes full-time department faculty in Psychology and Social Work, as well as adjunct faculty who are practicing human service professionals. All faculty are recognized for their academic and professional expertise as well as their service to the University. Learn more about GMercyU's Human Services faculty below. 

Additional Faculty:

Stephanie Fratantaro, MS, NCC, LPC (Program Coordinator) 
Thomas Dugan, MSS, LCSW
Rebecca Gullan, PhD
Wade Luquet, PhD
Janice Nuss, MSW, LCSW
Brigid O’Brien, MEd
Mary Reilly, MS

Undergraduate Minors 

Increase the value of your BA in Human Services degree by adding an undergraduate minor. GMercyU offers a wide variety of minors so you can choose the one that best meets your personal and professional goals.


SOC 100 Principles of Sociology (also a General Education requirement)
PSY 100   General Psychology (also a General Education requirement)
PSY 150  Social Psychology
PSY 111 Statistics
PSY 212 Counseling and Communication Skills
PSY 314  Ethical Issues in the Behavioral and Social Sciences
PSY 321 Group Processes
SWK 201 Introduction to Social Work 
SWK 202 Human  Behavior and the Social Environment I
SWK 203 Difference and Diversity
SWK 241 Marriage and Family Systems
SWK 304 Social Work Policy and Administration 
SOC 400 Social Work Research Methods
HSV 430 Human Services Practicum Preparation (0 credit, taken with Practicum)
HSV 435 Human Services Practicum (4 credits - 160 hours)
HSV 436 Human Services Practicum II (4 credits - 160 hours)
HSV 4000 Capstone

Four additional CRJ/PSY/SWK elective courses. 

Total Required Credit Hours in the Major = 56 credits

Credit Requirements
A minimum of 125 credits is required for the bachelor’s degree in human services.

This program may require a criminal background check and certain immunizations or other health-related clearances in order to participate in field experiences. See the undergraduate catalog for more information.

To review course descriptions, please refer to our undergraduate catalog (PDF).


Internship Opportunities

Here are some of the places where students who enroll as a human services major at GMercyU’s have worked or interned in the past:

  • A Baby's Breath
  • Abington Memorial Hospital
  • Access Services
  • Artman Lutheran Home
  • Big Brothers / Big Sisters of Bucks County
  • Buxmont Academy
  • Caring Hospice
  • CHOC (Coordinated Homeless Outreach Center)
  • Covenant House
  • Fair Housing Rights Center
  • Good Friends School
  • Indian Creek Foundation
  • Mercy Neighborhood Ministries
  • Mercy Volunteer Corp
  • Montgomery County Association for the Blind
  • Normandy Farm Estates
  • Ronald McDonald House - Children's Hospital
  • Shady Lane Nursing Home
  • Variety Club
  • Victim Services

Our Outstanding Faculty

Career Outcomes

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment outlook for a career in Human Services is projected to grow much faster than average (at 22%) through 2022, and job prospects are good.

Possible careers for human services majors

  • Crisis Intervention Counselor
  • Mental Health Aide
  • Family Support Worker
  • Intake Interviewer
  • Youth Worker
  • Social Service Liaison
  • Residential Counselor
  • Behavioral Management Aide
  • Case Management Aide
  • Adult Day Care Worker
  • Drug and Alcohol Counselor
  • Life Skills Instructor Client Advocate
  • Group Activities Coordinator
  • Gerontology Aide
  • Juvenile Court Liaison
  • Child Abuse Worker
  • Group Home Worker
  • Therapeutic Assistant
  • Community Outreach
  • Worker Probation Officer
  • Case Monitor Parole Officer
  • Rehabilitation Case Worker
  • Residential Manager