#108 Exploring Licensed Clinical Social Work Careers with Shara Ruffin

In this episode, Lisa and Shara discuss:

  • Looking at social work careers in both macro and micro settings. 
  • The educational and licensing path to becoming an LCSW. 
  • The three tracts of a Social Work Master’s program.
  • Tips for preparing, taking, and succeeding on the licensure exams. 


Key Takeaways: 

  • Social workers work in every aspect of life, from birth to death, with individuals, organizations, and governments. 
  • To qualify for an LCSW, your student would need a Master’s in Social Work. An undergraduate degree in social work is not required, though it can help build foundational knowledge and set them up for success in the graduate program.
  • Begin with the end in mind when considering social work as a college path and career, as it will take additional time in school, which costs more. 
  • A doctorate is not required to work in social work unless your student ultimately wants to work in research or academia. 


When people hear social workers, they think of just child welfare. And we do so much more than that – you can find us in every facet of society.” – Shara Ruffin


About Shara Ruffin:

Shara is an independently licensed clinical social worker and former psychotherapist from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in social work from Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania and a Master’s degree in social work from Howard University School of Social Work. Shara has specializations in grief, personality disorders, family trauma, compassion fatigue, military counseling, mindfulness meditation, ADHD, and anxiety. Shara is a board-certified mental health Provider.


Shara is also a 5x-Amazon Best-Seller of a social work journal called, “90 Days of Prayer”. She is the author of her second best-selling social work journal “90 Days Of Inspiration”, which is a study companion for social workers taking their licensing exam. 


Currently, Shara is the Founder and CEO of a consulting company called “Journey To Licensure”. Her company combines wellness, clinical supervision, and professional development coaching to support social workers through licensure examinations. Shara’s company “Journey To Licensure” was featured in Business Insider. Shara is also a LinkedIn Advisor and was most recently awarded “Top 15 LinkedIn Expert in Philadelphia in 2023.”


Episode References:


Get Lisa’s Free on-demand video: How-to guide for your teen to choose the right major, college, & career…(without painting themselves into a corner, missing crucial deadlines, or risking choices you both regret). 



Connect with Shara:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/SharaRuffin 

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/shararuffin/ 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/journeytolicensure 

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCgN8adZqV-VOhFXXB15IOrw 


Connect with Lisa:

Website: https://www.flourishcoachingco.com/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@flourishcoachingco

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/flourishcoachingco/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/flourish-coaching-co

Access the episode transcript here