Planning for Final Year (by Brittany Allen)

Posted on behalf of Brittany Allen, 2nd year DE Triangle Student

As the semester gets back in full swing, I can’t help but to reflect on the fact that I have completed almost 2 years of MSW coursework. What is now at the forefront of my mind is preparing for concentration year. As I continue to progress and learn in my foundation placement, I realize what I do and do not like about aspects of the field. Further, I have begun to form concrete thoughts about my potential career and goals that will drive my learning for concentration year. I now know what I would like to focus on and how I would like to go about preparing for clinical licensure and life post-graduation.

Here are a few things that were helpful to me as I continue to hone in on my desires and prepare for final year.

  • Be true to yourself and your intended career goals
  • Reach out to faculty who specialize in the field for which you are interested
  • Stay focused and plan ahead. Update your resume and keep notes on your goals and future plans. This will make it easier to converse and explain your position when asked. It will also facilitate an easier process and prevent road blocks
  • Continue to balance field and class loads. Talk to your professors and supervisors and be upfront when issues arise
  • Get excited! Concentration year signifies the reality that only ONE more year is left to your MSW coursework. Yayy!!

As usual, it is important to keep in mind self-care. This is an absolute necessarily to surviving and maintaining mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being. For me personally, being intentional about self-care has been challenging this semester as I prepare for my wedding in 2 months! On top of work, family life, social life, and academics it can be extremely difficult to schedule in time for myself. However, when I do so I can tell the difference it makes. I find joy in looking towards the future and great things to come. This definitely helps me to get through the tough times personally and academically! It’s all about BALANCE.

One fun thing I enjoy is painting…this month I went to a Wine & Design class with a friend…my painting did not turn out quite as expected…but I did appreciate the time to just sit back, relax, and have fun. If you are interested, check out the calendar to search for a class that offers a painting you like…the company is national and has several locations across the state.




About Ashley McMillan, Assistant Director of Recruitment, Admissions, and Financial Aid

I am the Assistant Director of Recruitment, Admissions, and Financial Aid at the UNC School of Social Work. I am originally from Lumberton, but now live in Durham. My area of interests include trauma, child mental health, family therapy, issues of diversity, inclusion, and equity. I love spending time with family and friends, traveling, shopping, and rooting for the Tar Heels!
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