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I always say to myself, "Gee, it'd sure be nice to wake up one day and know what the hell I want to do with my life."

Yesterday, I woke up and thought, "I should get an MSW (social work, fyi). I should start doing some volunteering in the area I am likely to want to concentrate in (care for the elderly?) and by the time I can make a graceful exit from the tech sector, I will have something vaguely competitive for an application to graduate school. Do I really think I would be comfortable in law school, or trying to restructure my entire thought process towards biochemistry, something I have never done before? No, I should get an MSW."

Is this a fluke, or a legitimate inner nudging towards purpose? I was reading the Soc department newsletter from my alma mater the other day, and saw a story on one of my favorite professors. It said he wanted to hear from alumni about how they are using sociology nowadays. Hrm. I'd love to be able to write him a letter that could provide that content. I'll probably spend downtime at work today looking at local MSW programs and searching for volunteer opportunities.



( 24 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 30th, 2004 12:44 pm (UTC)
Social Workers are extremely wonderful people. We docs need them! There is usually one on every floor of the hospital. They know the important stuff like what medicare/medicaid reemburses and the programs available to help poor people get good care and pay for that care.
Apr. 30th, 2004 01:07 pm (UTC)
So they're good bureaucrats? ;)

Most schools offer a choice between a clinical concentration and a organizational concentration. I suspect the SWs you're talking about are of the latter variety. :)
Apr. 30th, 2004 02:14 pm (UTC)
I don't know, They are talking to the patients about these things, not talking to the doctors. THey have to find out what the patients know, what they need, it's all clinical.
Apr. 30th, 2004 01:00 pm (UTC)
it sounds like an idea worth pursuing. that's such good work to do.
Apr. 30th, 2004 01:05 pm (UTC)
Sounds great!
And I've always been of the opinion that those little thoughts from nowhere should be heeded. I had one recently that said "Y'know, science was a REALLY dumb thing for you to study in college. What happened to the music, man?"

And (with luck and an accomodating admissions office) I'll be back in school Fall 2005 for music therapy.
Hey, I knew that ptoential Psych minor would be useful someday for somethign other than self-diagnosis! :D
May. 3rd, 2004 12:17 pm (UTC)
Heh... my problem is that I have a different little thought about every 6 months. If I had followed them all, I'd be pretty messed up by now. :)

That's awesome about finding a program you like.
Apr. 30th, 2004 01:35 pm (UTC)
Hey, you know my mom has an MCSW (that's the clinical concentration, as you probably know)! You want to ask her questions?
May. 3rd, 2004 12:18 pm (UTC)
I should totally ask your mom questions. Does she mind answering questions?
May. 3rd, 2004 04:07 pm (UTC)
I don't think she'd mind. I'll send you her email address.
Apr. 30th, 2004 02:06 pm (UTC)
Is this a fluke, or a legitimate inner nudging towards purpose?

Speaking as someone in that stage myself, I say it's a legitimate inner nudging towards purpose. Certainly there are questions along the way, doubts and hesitations. But you'll know.

Apr. 30th, 2004 02:23 pm (UTC)
volunteering can be a good way to figure out if you like the field. You might get a closer look at how things work in the day to day. it's hard to know what you want to do when you haven't actually done it. sometimes studying it, and the reality of working in it are two different things.
May. 3rd, 2004 12:19 pm (UTC)
An excellent, sobering point.
Apr. 30th, 2004 02:49 pm (UTC)
Go talk to rialian -- he is a social worker, and could probably give you a lot of pointers towards volunteer programs as well as stories of what it's like in the field. Feel free to tell him I sent you; I am sure he won't mind.
May. 3rd, 2004 12:20 pm (UTC)
Thanks... I'll do just that! Wonderful! :D

(This LJ thing is so freaking useful.)
Apr. 30th, 2004 03:51 pm (UTC)
Remember how I say you are kinder to people than I am? Even when you disagree with them (me)? You really try to listen to the points being made. I think you make a great SW and its an admirable goal. Hope it works for you.
Apr. 30th, 2004 04:01 pm (UTC)

That sounds like a great plan. And I think you'd be a kick-ass social worker. :)

The funny thing was, I was looking at the MSSW program at the UW last night. Every now and then I flirt with the idea of doing that instead of a PhD. I don't think it's something that would work out for me, but at times it seems very appealing.
May. 3rd, 2004 12:20 pm (UTC)
Why couldn't you get... a PhD in social work! Heh. I do kind of want to be Dr. S. someday... :)
Apr. 30th, 2004 04:18 pm (UTC)
i don't remember exactly whereabouts you live (MD or VA), but i've heard that UMBC has a stellar MSW program.

good luck if you do decide to pursue that!
May. 3rd, 2004 12:26 pm (UTC)
I live in MD... but that's good, becaues (see above) UMB, CU, and Howard are the big programs. George Mason has one but it seems kind of rinky dink.
May. 3rd, 2004 01:56 pm (UTC)
actually, i know a couple people who went to the UMB (i'm assuming that's UM in baltimore city, yes?) program, and compared it to a "factory" (actual quote) for churning out social workers. one friend in particular was particularly unhappy with the program, and recommends staying away from it. (i can prolly hook you up w/ her email address if you'd like to find out specifically what her concerns were, since everybody has different ideas of what they want out of a school.)

another friend of mine spent some time in the howard program, and (so far as i'm aware) had only good things to say.

of course, i suppose in an indirect way i'm shooting myself in the foot here -- since one presumes we'd have many more opportunities to hang out if you were to choose UMB. >;)
May. 3rd, 2004 02:01 pm (UTC)
I'd love to talk to your friend, if they didn't mind. Since UMB would be the top of my list, being geographically convenient and uh, not Catholic. And less expensive. And, um, not catholic. :)
Apr. 30th, 2004 10:58 pm (UTC)
Just to throw another possibility at you, perhaps you could apply your tech knowledge to helping people. Totally unrelated, Jennicam became a social worker...
May. 3rd, 2004 12:22 pm (UTC)
Sadly, I don't really enjoy being "technical", at least not in my current field. I tried vounteering in schools once upon a time but the program was so disorganized I never ended up being used for any projects. Also, my tech knowledge, pretty miniscule. :)
( 24 comments — Leave a comment )


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