Essay Example on Personal Statement Giving Voice to the Voiceless

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Personal Statement Giving Voice to the Voiceless University of Tennessee Knoxville Graduate Admissions Night falls in Malibu California as the counselors and the rest of my 6th grade class sat around the campfire My classmates and I wrote down our dreams and took turns throwing them into the glowing embers The dream I had that final night at camp was to come back as a counselor someday It was a few years before I could apply but my wish came to fruition the summer before high school For the next four years I devoted my summers to volunteering as a counselor for the junior blind at that very same camp The experiences and valuable information that these visually impaired campers brought into my life cultivated a growth of empathy and understanding for children with special needs and while I didn't know exactly what it meant at the time it would turn out that social work was my big dream all along Why social work It's in my nature to look for ways to reach out to people And it's always been much more than a sentiment for me it's meant active hands on assistance whenever I would see a need I learned that lesson as a child when I was a volunteer for the Foundation for the Junior Blind at Camp Bloomfield Hands on meant letting them hold on to my arm instead of me holding theirs 



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Hands on meant telling them whether the Jell O was red or green In high school hands on meant giving my friends a place to sleep while tempers in their own home cooled down In college hands on meant going the extra mile for a stranger in need In this case it was five young teenagers homeless and doing whatever they had to do to stay alive I opened up my house so they could shower and get clean clothes before giving them a ride to a train station where they would disappear down the tracks to begin the next leg of their journey If there was a defining moment when I knew the direction I wanted my career to take it was when I was able to arrange in patient treatment for a dear friend who was homeless and addicted to meth While I felt humbled to have played a role in arranging her treatment the bigger blessing was helping to bring her family into the situation and seeing them begin what I hoped would be a reconciliation It truly was a moment of clarity as I watched an estranged father and daughter put their arms around each other and talk for the first time in several months These reasons among many others are why I believe I am an excellent candidate for your MSSW program I chose the University of Tennessee UT for its quality and focus on multiple facets of the social work field It's not just the prestige of the social work program at the University of Tennessee or the beautiful setting that encompasses the Knoxville area but I also wanted a fresh start to help clear my mind and allow me to focus on pursuing a career helping others 



Traveling halfway across the country to meet with some of the counselors sparked a fire in me and when I returned to California I didn't waste a single moment before beginning my application and researching the program s mission and code of conduct Strengths that might enhance or limit my studies I have been developing my leadership skills since that first summer as a counselor at Camp Bloomfield These skills were essential to my growth throughout undergraduate studies as I transitioned into areas of statistical and psychological research It was also these areas of study that helped refine my problem solving skills Among my strengths none holds as much importance to me as my self awareness and thirst for knowledge These are key values that play a huge role in my daily life In high school I would use my summers off to volunteer as a counselor for the junior blind By developing my equanimity and soaking up new knowledge from my experiences working with the campers I was able to hone these skills and employ them in real life social interactions For example it is inevitable that kids will talk back or question your authority from time to time but from my personal experiences working as a counselor these instances were a daily occurrence and keeping level headed was a skill I had to learn to be successful at my job These experiences taught me to stay calm show deference and make unbiased decisions whenever challenges arose within the camp Exercising these practices will increase my capacity to handle stressful situations that I encounter during my studies and in the social work field Aside from the knowledge and experience I acquired during my undergraduate work there are other strengths that sometimes may be more essential such as the way I communicate and interact with children My experiences working with children have helped with this communication and interaction as well as having fostered growth in my empathy and compassion for others Meeting the demands of graduate school

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