Professional Development Program

New York City’s Administration for Children’s Services is committed to providing professional development support to all interested ACS employees. We demonstrate our commitment to education by supporting staff who are interested in pursuing their undergraduate or graduate level studies at accredited colleges and universities while maintaining their employment. The Professional Development Program (PDP) provides all levels of support to ACS employees who are considering or actively pursuing undergraduate or graduate level studies.

PDP Educational Support Services

PDP educational support services available to eligible employees include:

  • Individual and group coaching and support throughout your educational journey;
  • Assistance with applying to colleges and universities;
  • Negotiation of agency approved release time for graduate level students to attend classes;
  • Assistance with Field Placement/Internships for employees pursuing their MSW degree;
  • Capstone support and advisement.
women leading office team meeting

PDP administers the ACS Scholarship Program comprised of the Dr. James R. Dumpson Scholarship for graduate level studies and the Nicholas Scoppetta Scholarship for undergraduate level studies. We also support the continued professional development of licensed social workers at ACS and provider agencies.

Eligible graduate programs include: Master of Social Work (MSW), Master of Public Administration (MPA), Master of Public Policy, Master of Urban Policy Analysis and Management; or an approved equivalent.

Eligibility Criteria for Professional
Development Program Services

The Professional Development Program (PDP) provides professional development services to staff: release time to attend classes (up to seven hours a week), field placement/internship support and financial support through the ACS Scholarship Program.

Employees must meet the following minimum eligibility requirements in order to qualify for PDP services:

    • Permanent or non-competitive civil service employee status
    • Minimum of two (2) years of satisfactory job performance at NYC Administration for Children’s Services
    • Overall rating of “Very Good” or “Outstanding” performance evaluation (evaluation must be for the previous 12-month period)
    • No past, present or pending disciplinary actions
    • Favorable recommendation from their borough/location director and immediate supervisor

Applicants must complete and submit a PDP packet, which contains the following documents:

    1. PDP Application
    2. ACS PDP Agreement (Contract)
    3. Letter of acceptance from College/University
    4. Updated resume
    5. Personal Statement
    6. ACS Informational Release Form (School Waiver)
    7. Current employee performance evaluation (evaluation must be for the previous 12-month period and completed through ePerformance)

 

The ACS Informational Release must be notarized. Please mail your completed PDP packet to:

ACS Workforce Institute
Professional Development Program
150 William Street, 17th floor
New York, New York 10038

 

Submission of PDP packet materials does not guarantee release time or field placement from PDP. If you have any questions about the application packet, please contact Aisha Dixon, Deputy Director of CE and Scholarship Programs at aisha.dixon@acs.nyc.gov.

Get In Touch

For additional information, please email the Professional Development Program at: dppm.acs.pdp@acs.nyc.gov or contact Aisha Dixon, Deputy Director of CE and Scholarship Programs at: aisha.dixon@acs.nyc.gov.

Frequently Asked Questions

Professional Development Program

Who Is Eligible To Apply For The Professional Development Program (PDP) Educational Services And ACS Scholarship Programs?

PDP services are available to ACS employees. All applicants must meet the eligibility requirements, which include:

    • Permanent or non-competitive civil service employee status
    • Minimum of two (2) years of satisfactory job performance at NYC Administration for Children’s Services
    • Overall rating of “Very Good” or “Outstanding” performance evaluation (evaluation must be for the previous 12-month period)
    • No past, present or pending disciplinary actions
    • Favorable recommendation from their borough/location director and immediate supervisor

What Are The Educational Support Services Provided By PDP?

PDP educational support services include:

    • Individual support and coaching – assistance with exploring colleges/universities and programs that best fit your educational goals, as well as support with the application process;
    • *Release time – for graduate level studies, collaborate with leadership and navigate agency policies to support up to seven hours of agency approved release time per week to attend classes;
    • *Field Placements/Internship support – PDP collaborates with ACS divisions/departments to identify field placement/internship opportunities for employees who must complete field placements/internships as part of their graduate studies. Employees who will be working with children and families will be subject to additional background clearances per ACS policy. Field placements will not commence prior to receiving clearance from Human Resources;
    • Capstone support and advisement – PDP provides staff members who are in their final year of study support/advisement for their Capstone Projects.

 

*It is important to note that ACS cannot guarantee all applicants will receive release time or field placements/internships approval. All requests will be reviewed and approved by your respective Borough/Division leadership.

How Do I Apply For PDP Educational Support Services and The ACS Scholarship Program?

Please reach out to Aisha Dixon, Deputy Director of CE and Scholarship Programs at: aisha.dixon@acs.nyc.gov or 646-946-3580 for additional information and program applications. Applications for PDP services are accepted on an ongoing basis. Applications for the ACS Scholarship Program are accepted in February, June and September pending funding availability.

Am I Eligible For An ACS Scholarship Even If I Don’t Need Additional PDP Educational Support Services?

Yes. Anyone enrolled in an accredited undergraduate or graduate degree program that meets the scholarship eligibility requirements is encouraged to apply for an ACS scholarship whether they need any of the other PDP services or not. The ACS Scholarship Program is a service under the Professional Development Program.

Am I Eligible For An ACS Scholarship Regardless Of The Type Of Degree I Pursue?

The James R. Dumpson Scholarship is available to any ACS employee who meets the eligibility requirements and is enrolled in an accredited master’s degree program in social work, public administration, public policy, urban policy and management or an approved equivalent. The degree must be relevant to the mission of ACS.

The Nicholas Scoppetta Scholarship is available to any ACS employee who meets the eligibility requirements and is enrolled in an accredited bachelor’s degree program.

Anyone enrolled in an accredited undergraduate or graduate degree program that meets the scholarship eligibility requirements is encouraged to apply for an ACS scholarship reagrdless of whether they need any of the other PDP services. The ACS Scholarship Program is a service under the Professional Development Program.

Does Everyone Who Applies For The ACS Scholarship Receive One?

The scholarship program is a competitive process. The selection committee includes ACS leadership from multiple divisions, school faculty, and PDP/Scholarship graduates. Award recipients are selected based on:

  1. proof of acceptance or matriculation in an accredited degree program and current academic record;
  2. most recent ACS performance evaluation;
  3. written recommendations from a supervisor and borough/division leadership;
  4. applicant’s personal statement, and
  5. outcome of a group interview.

Will The Scholarship Cover All My Educational Expenses?

Scholarship awards are made for one academic year pending available funds. We strongly recommend that applicants also contact their school’s financial aid office for assistance with applying for any available financial aid opportunities. PDP can also provide additional information on financial aid resources.

How Long Is The Scholarship Application Process And At What Point Will I Know If I Have Been Granted An Award?

Scholarship applicants will receive a decision within 30 days of the interview and awards will apply to the following semester’s tuition. For example, if you receive a scholarship in July, it will be applied to your fall semester tuition. Please note that ACS cannot guarantee all applicants will receive an award.

Will I Be Eligible For A Promotion Once I Complete My Master’s Degree?

ACS is committed to acknowledging, recognizing and utilizing staff members who have acquired additional education both in their original assignments and when new opportunities arise. However, ACS is not able to automatically grant promotions, transfers or salary increases upon completion of a master’s degree program.

For additional information, please contact the Professional Development Team:

Aisha Dixon, Deputy Director of CE and Scholarship Programs: aisha.dixon@acs.nyc.gov
Norma Urigüen, Director of the Professional Development Program: norma.uriguen@acs.nyc.gov
In Accordance with our Equal Employment Opportunity Policy, selections will be made without regard to race, color, religion, gender, age, disability or sexual orientation.