The University of Tennessee, Knoxville


Training Integrated Professionals to Serve (TIPS) Stipend Opportunity

The proposed TRAINING INTEGRATED PROFESSIONALS TO SERVE (TIPS) program will produce professional social workers trained specifically to serve children, adolescents, and transitional-age youth in integrated healthcare settings, which will increase the likelihood that at-risk individuals  in Tennessee:

  • Receive behavioral health assessment,
  • Receive individualized treatment for behavioral health conditions,
  • Master skills to manage behavioral health conditions and enjoy satisfying lives.

Over the course of the first three years of the program's operation, 62 concentration year MSSW students will receive TIP stipends of $10,000 (each) to learn the skills and knowledge needed for working in an integrated health care setting. Students will complete an internship in an integrated healthcare setting and engage in the TIPS Learning Community. This opportunity will be available to students from the University of Tennessee College of Social Work (UTCSW) at all campuses, including Knoxville, Nashville, and Online.

Brief Overview

The goal of UTCSW's TIPS program is to be an active participant in moving the state of Tennessee and the social work profession into the integrated health practice arena. Currently, a shortage of agencies that focus on integrated health exists statewide. Few professionals in Tennessee have expertise in the role of integrated and interprofessional models and how social work relates to this area. UTCSW plans to improve services to at-risk children, adolescents, and transitional-age youth who have high rates of behavioral needs in Tennessee.

Grant for 2nd Year MSSW Students

An Innovative Approach

The TIPS Learning Community is an innovative approach, combining an eight-module online training program; discussion boards for students, faculty, and field supervisors; and student activities, which go alongside the MSSW coursework and field placements. All aspects of TIPS and the Learning Community are designed to build skills and knowledge of integrated health care and the needs of the at-risk target population.

Each student will serve at an internship in a Tennessee agency that is an integrated health care setting serving children, teens and transitional age youth. Students' Integrated Health Care (IHC) internships will be augmented by their participation in the TIPS Learning Community.

Sherry Cummings, Associate Dean of the College and Principal Investigator for the grant states, "In Tennessee, many children, adolescents, and transitional-age youth experience behavioral problems. Among these, especially those who are at risk of suicidal or violent behaviors, are those who do not have access to providers who are trained to treat their behavioral health issues within an integrated system of care setting"

Opportunities for Second Year MSSW Students

The goal of the UTCSW MSSW program is to recruit, inspire, and train 62 MSSW students to effectively serve at-risk children, adolescents, and transitional-age youth in an integrated health care setting. The program will strengthen the clinical competencies of 62 social workers who provide clinical services to at-risk children, adolescents, and transitional-age youth by training them in the core competencies of integrated care and social work practice, using both field-based learning and didactic training.

The TIPS program will be implemented for three years beginning in 2014 and will increase field placements in agencies with effective integrated health teams focusing on at-risk children, adolescents, and transitional-age youth for students in the Master of Science Social Work program at the UT College of Social Work.


Infographic Explaining Integrated Healthcare




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