Human Services Eligibility Workers are becoming highly sought after by Minnesota County Human Services agencies across the state, and Pine Technical and Community College offers two program levels to prepare you for a career in this field. The classroom portion of the program can be completed though online learning and virtual attendance while the internship will occur at the local county agency. These programs have been developed in consultation with the Minnesota Department of Human Services, and PTCC is the only Minnesota institution with an approved DHS program, with access to the DHS computer systems MAXIS, MEC2, and MMIS. The AAS degree and Diploma levels provide the needed competencies to meet the requirements to test with the Minnesota Merit System.
PTCC’s HSEW program trains people who have an interest in helping families in times of financial need. The program also prepares students through coursework in public assistance policy, communication skills, and how to determine eligibility for many federal and state services, including working with case scenarios. The HSEW program is approved by the Minnesota Department of Human Services and by the National Eligibility Workers Association. Eligibility Workers are often the first in the line of defense against poverty. An eligibility worker has extensive contact with clients and must develop strong interpersonal skills.
Students have the opportunity to obtain the HSEW Diploma and may continue on to earn their HSEW AAS Degree.
Eligibility Workers are employed by Minnesota human service agencies to assist families and individuals who are living in poverty; typically, HSEW graduates are found working for various counties or the State of Minnesota. County human service agencies in all the state’s 87 counties employ eligibility workers; more than two thousand men and women are currently employed as eligibility workers across the state. Historically, between 150 and 200 eligibility workers are hired statewide each year. Although some newly hired eligibility workers are promoted from clerical jobs within a human service agency, many new hires come from outside the agency, and many prefer to hire HSEW graduates.