Social Work: How do I know if it’s right for me?
If you want to help people that’s a good start, but that’s not all to the profession. We believe we can train you to be a social worker if you possess a certain set of characteristics that will make you successful as a student and professional. Here is a basic checklist:
Do you get satisfaction from helping people help themselves and not just solving problems for people?
Are you a believer in the idea that: if given a chance and with positive guidance people can help themselves change their circumstances; that each person has certain strengths?
Do you like working with people of different backgrounds, cultures, social and economic statuses? Are you willing to examine your own learned notions about other groups?
Are you patient with people? Can you hang in there for a long time to help someone who is struggling?
Do you enjoy working with people in general on all levels of interaction? Not just one-on-one and not just medium size or larger groups? Can you listen and give input equally well?
Are you willing to constantly examine your habits and behavior? Social workers need to be aware of what’s going on inside of them as well as what is going on around them.
Do you enjoy problem solving and want to improve your skills through the social work method of problem solving?
Do you like to use data and statistics, reading and writing to make sense of the social world?
Are you dissatisfied with the status quo? Do you want to help change society for the better?
Finally, do you value putting it all together and seeing The Big Picture?
If you said “yes” to most of these, read on.
Katie – BSW Graduate – I knew social work was right for me when the first time I was able to help someone and the feeling I got when I made a difference. I remember the first time I testified at the state capital in front of a committee. I was so nervous but I knew I had to tell my story in order to make sure the legislators understood the importance of the bill. The committee passed the bill and it helped many people in Minnesota.
Karen – BSW Graduate – I was debating whether to be a teacher or a social worker. Everyone said I would make a great social worker. I chose social work and now I love it.
Christine – BSW Graduate – I knew social work was right for me when I looked at the world, listened to myself and recognized that here was a relationship to cultivate.