See why these MU students chose Social Work
Why Social Work is Important
On April 5, 2013, the Social Work Club traveled to Hillside NJ to help out the victims of Hurricane Sandy. Participants volunteered at the Community Food Bank sorting and re-packing food items in the warehouse. Sponsored with the support of the Student Government Association, 33 students from across campus volunteered. Six friends, spouses and parents were also put to work at the food bank. MU faculty members Dr. Mary Daly and Dr. Jan Purk helped out as well. The Mansfield University group volunteered in the Community Food Bank warehouse the day before a major food distribution to 400 Bergen County families still suffereing in the wake of Hurrican Sandy. A total of more than 3,000 homes, rental units and businesses in the two towns were impacted by the October 2012 storm, and many of the families were forced from their homes by flooding.
The Community Food Bank of NJ expressed gratitude for the efforts of the Mansfield University volunteers!
Joanne Babcock, a senior Social work major, made a poster presentation at the Pennsylvania Association of Undergraduate Social Work Education (PAUSWE) conference on April 12, 2013 in State College. The poster was titled: PREPARE for Change: College Students Engage in Community Needs Assessment. Joanne and three other students (Emily Nichols, Heather Kreamer and Joel Rymell) conducted a needs assessment and implemented a project for Dr. Daly's Practice with Communities & Organizations course. The group partnered with a food pantry to address the issue of hunger and food insufficiency in the community of Mansfield PA. The project aimed to raise awareness about these problems and increase food and monetary donations from the general public and local businesses. The group contacted local businesses, organized a food drive, distributed food to needy families and publicized the needs of the Mansfield Food Pantry on social media. The poster presentation for the PAUSWE statewide conference recommended that the capacities of small non-profit agencies are enhanced through community/university collaboration on needed projects.
There was no doubt that social workers were in the house on April 16th at the State Capitol in Harrisburg. Over 800 social workers and social work students descended on the capital to educate and advocate on behalf of the social work profession! Thirty-three social work majors and two faculty members from Mansfield University joined the crowd of social workers from across the Commonwealth for the Pennsylvania Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers (NASW-PA) Annual Lobby Day. Students met with their state legislators during scheduled appointments that were pre-arranged by Justin Fleming, NASW's Government Relations Director. The legislative meetings all had a common purpose: to discuss the importance of licensure of BSW-level social workers. Thirty-six states currently license BSW social workers; Pennsylvania does not. Following the scheduled meetings with legislators, all attendees gathered in the beautiful capitol rotunda for an inspiring rally. Making the voice of social work heard so that the public can be protected was the theme covered by the rally's speakers, which included Ron Simon, Executive Director of NASW-PA. Dr. Mary Daly arranged the trip logistics, assisted by a group of students from her Communities and Organizations Practice class. Dr. Nancy Sidell also accompanied the group.
One student remarked that the experience of participating in Lobby Day is one that will help in her future career. Another noted that the experience made her proud to be a social worker. Plans are in the works for Mansfield University to participate in next year's Lobby Day.