Social work graduates aim to make a difference | UniSC | University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Social work graduates aim to make a difference

15 Oct 2021

Two new USC Fraser Coast graduates are working to improve mental health and wellbeing in the community as social workers at hospitals in Bundaberg and Hervey Bay.

Sarah Neisler of Hervey Bay and Chloe Cassidy of Maryborough were among USC Fraser Coast’s latest cohort of students to graduate yesterday at a ceremony in Hervey Bay.

“Studying Social Work felt like a calling,” said 24-year-old Sarah, who began her new role as a social worker at the Bundaberg Base Hospital after completing the Bachelor of Social Work last semester.

“I chose to study Social Work as I wanted to make a positive change to those in my community who were struggling,” the former Urangan State High School student said.

“Additionally, I grew up watching my parents, who are both educators, make a difference by helping people learn and grow.

“Through my role as a hospital social worker, I am able to assist those whose social and emotional experiences are affecting their health and wellbeing, advocate for patients and their families without a voice, and promote access to services and support.”

For Chloe, 25, enrolling in Social Work at USC Fraser Coast gave her the opportunity to remain close to family and friends while studying her chosen degree and continuing her full-time role as an administration officer at Fraser Coast hospitals.

It is now a case of working in the same hospitals, but in a new challenging and rewarding role as a social worker, after gaining the position soon after completing her final placement.

“After seven years working in hospital administration, I was inspired to make a career change and enrolled in a Bachelor of Social Work through USC Fraser Coast in 2017,” Chloe said.

“The highlight for me was the opportunity to make a number of life-long friends and enjoy the laid-back and supportive atmosphere of the Fraser Coast campus, and I enjoyed the flexibility to complete some online subjects”.

Sarah also chose to study at the Fraser Coast so she could live at home with the support of family and friends.

“My experience at USC felt like one of a kind,” she said. “I met some of the best people in my life and had the support of my teachers who went above and beyond to support me and other students on our journey.

“During my time at university, I was taught the importance of researching, actively learning new things, asking questions and, most importantly, working as a team.

“I learned the importance of social work theories and how they can be implemented into real-life situations with a different lens to my own.”

For details on studying at USC in 2022

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