Having two “homes” at Carolina: Staying connected

It is hard to believe that this time last year I was walking through the doors of the School of Social Work as a fresh and new graduate student. Now I’m walking through the doors of the School of Public Health as a not so fresh and not so new graduate student :).  Three weeks ago, I attended my orientation as a 1st year public health student and started getting acquainted with my new home. During orientation, it suddenly donned on me “Do I still have a place in the School of Social Work?!?!” *cue the dramatic music*. It has been a unique experience feeling familiar and unfamiliar with things all at once, as I transition into the public health phase of my program. I have to admit, I found myself making my way to the School of Social Work many times during the first couple weeks back because it still felt like home.

I was a little concerned that I would lose my connection to the School of Social Work once I moved to the School of Public Health, but I now realize that will not be an issue. Fortunately, I am able to be involved with the Social Work Student Organization (SOWOSO) and I have taken on a leadership role within the organization. SOWOSO has been a great way to make me feel like I still of a place at the table in the School of Social Work.

SOWOSO is composed of student-led caucuses on various topics of interest. Since students create the caucuses, you can have a caucus on any special topic/population that interests you. For example, I co-created the Latin@ Student Caucus with another Latina student after we realized that we wanted a way to get more information about the Latin@ community to our non-Latin@ colleagues. We also wanted to create a space for Latin@ students to gather together to share their unique experiences and explore how their ethnicity has shaped their journeys. I am looking forward to the events we have planned for Hispanic Heritage months. The theme will be “Me Ves? (Do you see me?)” with an emphasis on the importance of representation within the school & society at large.  I’m also a tri-chair for the Black Student Caucus, which has been an active caucus since 1992. I’m excited about the renewed energy we are bringing to the caucus and to see it grow. As you can see, SOWOSO is a great way to get involved within the school and also a great way to gain leadership experience. Check out the SOWOSO website for more information!

Here are a few photos from our SOWOSO leadership retreat and the caucus fair—enjoy 🙂

Getting our

Getting our “team building” on with an activity at the SOWOSO leadership retreat.

Pointing you in the right direction with our fancy signs :)

Pointing you in the right direction with our fancy signs 🙂

Representatives of the Latino Student Caucus & Black Student Caucus.

Representatives of the Latin@ Student Caucus & Black Student Caucus.

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