"The social work program at SAU stresses the importance of practicing competently, ethically, and with a critical understanding of diversity, human behavior, and social contexts. This orientation matches my personal and professional values."
Laura believes moral and ethical principals give value and meaning to our lives. She joined our MSW program because she is committed to economic and social justice, maintaining human rights, and wants to play a part. SAU established the first MSW with an empowerment specialization in the U.S., which gives Laura the skills to help individual clients and create change in the world. We'll help you gain the skills to achieve your goals, too.
What are the advantages of the empowerment specialization?
"By using empowerment practice, I work to understand the context of human behavior with diverse clients to work collaboratively to identify strengths at both micro and macro levels to conceptualize change. I maintain my professional competence through the continuous integration of research and practice. I have a political commitment to social justice. Lastly, I critically reflect on my own practice to enhance my professional development."
How is your field placement building your skills?
"It's an excellent opportunity to incorporate what I'm learning in the classroom in my practice. I consult with my field supervisor and colleagues in my field placement on client interactions to increase my professional development. The MSW faculty and students support me through our field seminar courses where we discuss ethical issues in confidence. Overall, it's supportive learning environment," she says. Our MSW program has connections with more than 400 regional agencies and organizations. You have so many options for field placement, and we'll help you find one that matches your goals.
What interprofessional training have you received?
Each year, students from disciplines within the College of Health and Human Services participate in Interdisciplinary Day and work in teams to develop a case plan based on a client scenario. "This is a great opportunity to practice collaborating with other disciplines while gaining a better understanding of their approach to practice," Laura says. MSW students can also volunteer in the St. Ambrose Interprofessional Health Clinic and get hands-on experience helping local clients who otherwise would not receive care.
Why Choose the MSW program?
"I've learned to utilize theory to practice competently, ethically, and with a critical understanding of diversity, human behavior, and social contexts. I've been provided with the frameworks necessary to provide resources to develop the self-efficacy necessary for individuals and groups to overcome the oppression of an unjust society," Laura says. "One of the greatest strengths of the program is our faculty. They are dedicated to enhancing our understanding of the course material so that we can competently integrate our learning into practice," she says.