This past weekend (Friday and Saturday) I went to the National Association of Social Workers- North Carolina chapter Fall Conference. Two things to share:
1. Asheville is an incredible place for a weekend getaway! The pictures here don’t do it any justice (taken from my phone), but the crisp mountain air, changing leaves, and cute shops downtown really can’t be beat. Asheville is about 4 hours away from Chapel Hill, and there’s tons to do like visiting the Biltmore estates, spending the afternoon shopping downtown, finding a hiking trail to try out, or attending one of the many art/music festivals. In fact, just thinking about it makes me want to go back since I spent so much time at the conference and didn’t get to venture out much this trip!
2. The NASW Conference was a wonderful learning and networking opportunity and I’m grateful I got to attend while still a student (aka discounted rate!). All of the sessions were great (including a networking lunch for people interested in getting their LCSW) but my two favorites were Teen Depression and Hip-Hop Culture. In teen depression, Dr. Nelson spoke about his life experience of raising a son with life-threatening depression and how it informs his clinical practice. Check out his website and book at http://www.survivingteendepression.com/ if you’re interested in teen depression. The other session I really loved was on hip-hop and rap culture and how to establish rapport with clients immersed in this culture. I recently had a client ask me what I thought of Wakka Flakka (who I had never heard of) and I wish I’d been to this session first….now I know! We discussed the influence of music on today’s youth and even got a “cheat sheet” of slang for gang, drug, and sex reference. Really helpful!