Social Work: A Calling Admission Essay

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Social Work: A Calling

I have what might be described as a heightened sense of awareness of the world around me, and, also, a natural curiosity about the human condition. It is this combination, I think, that has led me to choose social work as my career path. Beginning at a young age, I noticed the disparity in the financial, physical, and emotional well being of the people around me. I noticed that financial well being did not necessarily mean that a person was physically or emotionally well, and that people of average means, and even those who struggled were often times able to see brighter futures for their selves. They did not consider their selves limited or confined by their lack of financial resources. As I prepared for college, I began to see the world in which we live as a world rich in cultural diversity, and that the problems we experience as a society in our local communities and in our larger world community are also diverse. The complexities of human nature and the ways in which people interact with one another intrigue me, and so do the challenges that arise out of these complexities and interactions.

The concept of the social worker as a resource for people facing life challenges is relatively new in terms of the world's history. As we find ourselves facing the challenges of a changing world, becoming members of a world community, the need for people to have resources to help them work through the challenges we face as a society and as individuals becomes synonymous with the social evolution and revolution we are now experiencing. The problems of poverty and the manifestation of the problems resulting from the disparities of poverty increase drastically when considering it in terms of the world community, and the need for social workers becomes increased exponentially.

In today's world, the social worker must approach the world with an open mind, but also be prepared to confront the close mindedness of others, and willing to be of assistance to them in easing, not prying open their closed minds. It requires a commitment to the work, stamina, and strength of body and mind. It demands a personal life balance in order to face the atrocity of self-inflicted human destruction, while at the same time the humanity to be gentle and generous. A social worker must be a leader in order to guide those people with whom he works from the darkness of despair, into the light of hope and self-confidence.

Social work requires individual resourcefulness and an ability to adapt to the challenge at hand, and to be able to revise plans and goals in keeping with client's best interest, and to be professionally responsible without compromising personal or professional integrity. A good social worker is one that is willing to be guided by the experience and resources of others in the field, and is one who is able to see a bigger picture even if it is not the picture that you might have drawn. I think that a good social worker is one who sees their professional colleagues and the other professions with which social workers work towards achieving successful client outcomes as collaborators, not competition.

A social worker must be prepared to deal with the politics of our social environment. It is through applied research that we can overcome the political obstacles to our professional goals. We must be meticulous in our research, employing sound and sustainable methodologies that demonstrate the needs of society and which will help to secure the resources for addressing society's needs as social workers. We must be able to confront the political challenges with continual research that updates and support the conclusions we make in our work. Likewise, we must be able to maneuver within the corporate environments that many of us will find ourselves working in, and to understand that corporate goals and clinical goals often seem far afield of one another, but yet find ways to merge those goals.

As a social worker, I think that the political and corporate goals will at first be weakness, because I have not yet had that experience as a social worker, especially under circumstances where I might find myself limited as to the resources I need for my client(s). However, I believe that I am resourceful, and creative, and that I will have the benefit of experienced professional colleagues around me as resources to draw from. My strength is that I am someone who is always looking for solutions. I know that success is sometimes measured in degrees, and I think there will be occasions when I will have to measure my client's outcome in terms of what has been gained for my client, not lost to my client because of political or corporate goals.

Like many people who choose the path of social work, and perhaps many people in general; I was moved by the events of September 11, 2001. Even as a young child, I recall a feeling of helplessness, and a strong desire to want to do something to help the many people who suffered the loss of loved ones. Like many people, I also experienced the emotional conflict as our convictions began to divide because of our positions on how we responded to that event. In fact, the problems arising out of the events of 9/11 have in many ways become my generation's legacy. This is the time during which I came into my political age, and even people who had an adversity for politics have not been able to ignore the political upheaval and division of the American people. We are a war weary people, and our economy has suffered. We are only now beginning to feel the social impact of 9/11.

My concerns as to where we are today are many. I am a strong advocate of a world community. I believe that cultural diversity is something to be celebrated, and that we can all of us become more enlightened through the experience of meeting and understanding people of other cultural traditions. I think that in many ways the events 2001 and the war on two fronts has left us suspicious and wary of people of other cultures, especially those of Middle Eastern origins. I think that has in some ways led to the heightened anxiety and anger about the situation on America's southern border with Mexico. I have seen what I am concerned is a growing animosity in America towards people of other than American ethnicity. It is an anxiety and anger that has been exacerbated by outsourcing of jobs, and economic hardship. This moved me to become more politically aware, and when Barack Obama ran for election, I found myself more eager to be involved and to support him because I felt his policies focused on the social changes that would help resolve much of what was dividing Americans, and bring us together again. This became important to me, and I think it has changed me in many ways. It has given me a greater sense of purpose in what I am seeking as my life's work.

What I expect to gain from my graduate school experience are the tools and knowledge by which I can be effective in my work. I will be able to work in the field, and to do research that will lend understanding as to how people can overcome the challenges and the barriers that separate, and to gain a greater sense community and how we can work and live together in ways that bring about social changes that make us better and stronger and reveals the full breadth of our humanity. I hope to benefit from the expertise of other professionals in the field, and to acquire the… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Social Work: A Calling.  (2010, February 18).  Retrieved January 20, 2020, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/social-work-calling/9828782

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"Social Work: A Calling."  Essaytown.com.  February 18, 2010.  Accessed January 20, 2020.
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