The Youth-Oriented Substance Abuse and Trauma Counseling Program II is a new offering within the Master of Social Work (MSW) program at UWM that exposes students to specialized training in both substance abuse and trauma counseling with a focus on vulnerable children, youth, and young adults. The program also includes state-of-the-art training in cultural competency, technology integration, and integrated care.

A mixed race woman wearing a pink shirt and lanyard interacting from behind her desk with a female colleague in a professional setting.

Who should apply?

Students should apply as early as possible once admitted to the traditional, in-person MSW program.

  • Any MSW student admitted to the program who meets the program eligibility and requirements (see below).
  • Students of color, students from low-income communities, and first generation college students are strongly encouraged to apply. Increased diversity in mental/behavioral health services in underserved communities is an objective of this program.
  • MSW students interested in careers working with children, youth, and young adults within the mental and behavioral health field.
The YOSAT II program is only available for students in the traditional MSW program, which is in person and based on the UW-Milwaukee campus. The YOSAT II program curriculum is not available in the Online Master of Social Work program.

Program Eligibility

  • Must be a citizen, national, or permanent resident of the United States.
  • Must be admitted or enrolled in the traditional, in-person MSW program.
  • If enrolled, must have a GPA of 3.0 or better.
  • Must not have started SW 821 (Field Instruction III).
School social work students are not eligible for YOSAT II due to conflicting curricular requirements. For those interested in school social work and trauma, please see this opportunity.

Financial Assistance

Program Requirements

  • Must maintain MSW student status and a GPA of 3.0 or better.
  • Course plan must include substance abuse counseling education and the trauma-informed care graduate certificate program.
  • Must complete 9 additional credits beyond MSW graduation requirements
    (1 additional academic semester).
  • Includes a field practicum in a select mental/behavioral health clinic, outpatient treatment center, or integrated health center.

Instructions for Applying

  • Apply online
  • Application materials:Resume
  • In about 250 words (no more than 500), please describe the following: – Your interest in the Youth-Oriented Substance Abuse and Trauma Counseling (YOSATI) II Program.– Your experience with individuals impacted by mental and/or behavioral health conditions.– Your future career goals and how the YOSAT II Program will help you achieve these goals.

I hope to become a therapist in a behavioral health treatment center, focusing on interventions with clients engaging in substance use and with backgrounds of trauma. I’d like to build strong relationships with clients, wherein I am able to celebrate their strengths and accomplishments, as well as empathize with and validate the gravity of their lived experiences.

Dominic PorubskyMSW and YOSAT II Student

This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of an award totaling over $1.8 million. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government.

Program Coordinator
Sofia Gordon (Jonas)

Update: There are limited slots available. Apply as soon as you know you are interested in the YOSAT II program, regardless of where you are in the MSW program. Roughly, applications will be reviewed early to mid-February for Summer semester; early to mid-April for Fall semester; and early to mid-October for Spring semester.

If we have more applications and students accepted than spots, we will create a waitlist.