Tuesday, May 12, 2009

What’s it like to be a….Social Work Professor?

What does a normal day look like? Is it consistent throughout the year? If youíve had this position for a while, how have things changed? 
My day is varied and includes preparation and teaching of classes to social work majors, participation in departmental and college wide committee work, and academic advising.

What other, if any, positions have you held prior to your current job? How did you get to where you are now?
 
My background in social work is also varied.  I worked full time while working toward my Masterís Degree in Social Work:
I worked as a career counselor at a technical college, working with young people completing certificate programs to write resumes and cover letters, prepare for interviews, and search for jobs. 
In addition to this I worked briefly at a pre-natal clinic for low-income mothers in Irvington, NJ. I worked directly with the pregnant mothers and the medical professionals to connect the women and their families to needed resources including housing, food stamps, Medicaid, and where necessary, substance abuse treatment. 
After this I worked in Newark, NJ as a supervisor with the Court Appointed Special Advocate Program (CASA). This is an organization that works with the courts to help oversee cases of child abuse and neglect and to advocate for the children and families in order for the children to move toward permanency, either back at home with their parents or toward adoptive families. 
My most recent work, prior to teaching, was working with homeless women and children and in the development of low-income housing, including permanent supportive housing, transitional housing, housing for persons with AIDS (HOPWA), senior housing, and housing for people with disabilities.  Most of this work was done with Lutheran Social Ministries of NJ and also in Grand Rapids with Genesis Non Profit Housing Corporation.

I got to where I am now by always learning that regardless of what job I found myself doing at any given time, that there were valuable lessons, skills, and abilities to learn which could be transfered to my next position.

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Posted by Bonnie Speyers on 05/12 at 09:45 AM
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