Brethren Housing Association is a transitional housing program serving single women with children experiencing homelessness. As Program Director, I serve as the supervisor for the Family Advocate Case Managers equipping them with the skills, tools, and support needed to serve the families in the Transitions, Side By Side, and Youth Programs.
One strength I will always praise and appreciate about Messiah's SOWK Dept is the depth of field experience students receive while in the program. I think it is unmatched from other programs as far as how many field experiences students receive and this is critical in preparing students to graduate ready to enter the field. I felt that upon graduation, I already knew the community I was going to be working in. I had a good working knowledge of the resource network in the community and I had already met and shook hands with other professionals in the field that I would begin working alongside. This build confidence in a student that they will graduate as a professional ready to enter the field.
I think the best advice I can offer is to take full advantage of every opportunity you are presented with while you are a student at Messiah. There will be field experience opportunities, service opportunities, and social gatherings - do it all! Build deep relationships and friendships with both classmates and students across other majors. Learn, talk, listen, and try new things. The season of being a student is fleeting and will go by so quickly even though in the moment it is hard and tiring and overwhelming even at times.
Would you recommend Messiah’s BSW program to future social workers?
I would absolutely recommend the Messiah BSW program to future SOWKers because I believe the program well equips students with the experiences and education they need to enter the field as professionals with confidence. Students will feel equipped as SOWKers as well as Christians who can walk out their faith in a difficult and heavy work environment of the helping professions.