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Hub for Good

Carleton University’s School of Social Work is seeking social services organizations to host remote field placement opportunities for third and fourth year undergraduate and graduate social work students.

Background

For students hoping to pursue a career in the social work sector, field-based learning is paramount in order to apply classroom learning to real situations, gain confidence and experience and hone critical skills. For this reason, field placements are a mandatory component of Carleton’s Social Work degree program.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the School of Social Work has shifted its courses to an online format and has reorganized its field education program—with the goal of maintaining high-quality, hands-on learning while at the same time protecting the safety of its students.

Student field placements will be offered primarily remotely with little to no face-to-face contact with host organizations. In the event that the host organization has appropriate protocols in place to protect clients and students and ensure social distancing guidelines are maintained, some on-site work may be permitted. The format of the placements (fully remote vs. partial on-site work) will be determined on a case-by-case basis with host organizations.

We Have

Carleton’s School of Social Work is home to ambitious, empathetic students who are eager to learn and contribute in a hands-on work placement environment. Students range in experience; some students would be well suited to introductory or beginner placements, while others have prior experience and can thrive in more advanced social work practice.

Students receive guidance and instruction to prepare them for placements via a faculty liaison. The faculty liaison leads students in an in-class environment and also meets with students on a biweekly basis to provide additional support. Meetings between the faculty member, student and field supervisor will be organized twice a term to check in on progress.

The School of Social Work currently has two field co-ordinators and a field administrator to further assist with the administration of the placement program. These individuals are committed to supporting both students and field supervisors throughout their practicums. 

We Need

We are seeking placement opportunities for students at social services organizations of any size, including counselling services, community-based organizations and policy-based organizations. Practicums are intended to familiarize students with the issues, complexities and impacts of providing and facilitating services at individual, family, group, organization and community levels, and to deepen students’ abilities to apply critical thinking skills in practice. Students are looking for a wide range of opportunities to learn social work skills, whether those opportunities are focused on working with individuals, communities or doing policy work.

Organization that wish to host a student practicum will need to assign a field supervisor. The field supervisor’s role and responsibilities can be found here.

Placements will run from September 2020 – December 2020 or December 2020 – April 2021. Organizations can reach out to get involved at any time should they have a placement vacancy.

The Impact 

All social work students must complete a practicum in order to graduate with an accredited degree. In the current context, this has proven to be a challenge. 

Providing a student with hands-on training allows them to begin to develop a professional identity, applying core social work values in practice and using critical self-reflection. It also ensures that they will enter the social work field with a stronger skill set, allowing them to better serve the most vulnerable members of our communities.

This placement program therefore provides an excellent opportunity for organizations to give back to the community, support student development and thereby contribute to the future of social work.

Project Lead Info

If you are interested in offering a remote field placement opportunity for either the fall or winter terms, please contact Vanessa Bascelli at vanessabascelli@cmail.carleton.ca

Carleton University
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hubforgood@carleton.ca