Thus far, I think my favorite part of the GSSW program has been my field experience. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed both my first & second year placements. Last year, I worked at a local community mental health as part of their bilingual intern program. I worked with a school-base therapist as well as an outpatient therapist which proved to be helpful because I was able to determine which type of setting I enjoyed more. Thus, when it came time to search for my 2nd year placement, I solely searched for internships at outpatient mental health clinics. I’m so glad I did because it has proven to be the ideal place for me! I’m working for a mental health clinic in a hospital setting. I’m already seeing my own patients and so far I have a caseload of about 20 patients. It is very exciting, but also tiring at times! Being a therapist is mentally exhausting; you have to constantly be able to switch gears and be on top of your game with every patient.
Aside from the practical skill experience I’ve gained from field, I am also able to incorporate my language abilities into my work. I speak Spanish and Bosnian. Although I’ve always known I will be able to use Spanish professionally I never really thought I’d be able to use Bosnian. Well, I have been proven wrong. This year I’ve been asked by my old field agency to provide services to a Bosnian woman who speaks no English. They haven’t been able to find an in-person translator and for this particular circumstance a phone-translator just will not work. What an awesome opportunity this will be for me, plus I’ll be paid for my services; another bonus. Goes to show that it is important to keep the line of communication open with old employers! 🙂