What You’ll Learn

Child and Family Studies (CFS) majors must show a genuine concern for the welfare of children, families, and the general well-being of others. It is critical for you to serve as willing advocates for change in political and other systems, without prejudice, to view each individual as a person of worth. You'll gain a foundation in the classroom while honing your skills in numerous service-learning opportunities.

The Child and Family Studies program is designed around the life lab concept, emphasizing a partnership between academics and out of classroom placements. You are required to enroll in a semester practicum during your second year in order to understand the possibilities and complexities of your vocational choice.

Career Opportunities

During senior year, you are required to enroll in a second practicum in order to gain professional experience, network in your area of specialty, and bridge academics and practice. The core courses you'll take are designed to provide you with hands-on experiences through service-learning placements.

Recent Service-Learning Placements

Palmetto AIDS Life Support Services

The Benefit Bank

The Sickle Cell Association

YMCA Boys and Girls Club of the Midlands

The Nurturing Center Co-operative Ministries

Camp Rise Above EdVenture

Children’s Museum

Harvest Hope Food Bank

Children’s Garden

Ronald McDonald House

Richland County First Steps

The Columbia College Difference

As professionals, we believe in the ability of change and grow in all individuals, providing quality assistance within ethical guidelines. The Columbia College faculty will help shape your ethics and prepare you to engage in any area of Child and Family studies.

    Additional Course Options


    Family Law and Social Advocacy

    This concentration develops the knowledge and skills needed to be successful in working with families and children in a legal setting. In addition to the standard CFS curriculum, students are required to take courses with the social work and political science departments to increase familiarity with laws and legal process regarding vulnerable populations.

    Many classes are held in partnership with the South Carolina Statehouse, including an opportunity to train as guardian ad litem for course credit. Completion of this degree qualifies you for a variety of professional options including positions with: Department of Juvenile Justice, South Carolina State Department of Social Services, Richland County Department of Social Services, Richland County Guardian Ad Litem/Victims’ Advocates, or Graduate study in law or social work .

    Services to Children and Families

    This concentration provides the opportunity to work with families from early interventionist positions to working with senior centers and end-of-life care. These courses set a sound foundation for graduate work in in fields such as law, health care, therapy, ministry, or child life.

    Experience with different family dynamics prepares students for a number of professional options such as: Family Service Coordinator, Parent Educator, School/Home Liaison, Nonprofit services for children and families.