The idea of returning to grad school a few years ago held an oft-too assumed idea of late nights in the library, hunched over a laptop, pouring words into a caffeine-driven paper. What I’ve found going into the final semester is that there is more, MUCH MORE, to this program than that. While classes are great and field education is amazing, I’ve come to realize it is the non-mandatory options that really distinguish UNC’s SSW from others. For example: I am being guided by faculty in conducting an independent research study with another student; I was motivated by two instructors to pursue an independent study this semester to further enmesh my professional interests with my education; a local student-operated health clinic provides incomparable experiences with a wide range of clients; and I’ve taken on a co-facilitative role with the director of my field site working with a support group for adults with High-Functioning Autism.
The program establishes the foundation of advanced education while also providing the tools necessary to construct a completely individualized experience.