Jenny Simpson sensed a call to social work.
“I feel like God has put a desire in my heart to help people,” she said.
Jenny graduated in 2008 with a bachelor’s degree in social work and a minor in psychology. As a student, she worked at a nursing home, mentored those in the community and gained practicum experience as a social worker at the Bluffton Regional Medical Center, House of Hope and Family Centered Services.
“When I got thrown into my practicum, I said, ‘OK, this is a test,’ but they were talking about things I knew,” she said, and from there, she gained her confidence to succeed.
In June 2008, Jenny began working as a social worker in the family preservation program at Family Centered Services in Bluffton, Ind., and in 2011, she was promoted to behavioral clinician. In her current position, she helps children — and their families — with behavioral problems, such as acting out or getting bad grades in school.
“It’s an opportunity for them to have an extra friend in their life who has training to deal with those kind of situations,” she said.
Between that time, she also worked at Huntington House Homeless Shelter where she, among other responsibilities, assisted individuals who were homeless with developing and implementing goals to improve their current situations.
Jenny says it was her time at Huntington University that made all of the difference after graduation. The hands-on experience and one-on-one attention from her professors helped prepare her to effectively help others in the “real world.”
“We did a lot of role playing and that’s how we learned in our social work classes,” she said. “It was just a collaboration of social work classes that helped me. … It was definitely a really good program for me, and I feel like I learned a lot.”
Jenny says the next step for her will be obtaining her LSW (Licensed Social Worker) and then studying for a master’s degree in early 2012 — all goals she knows she can accomplish because of HU.
“I didn’t realize until I came to HU how blessed I would be to have professors that actually took time to go above and beyond for their students. They showed through actions that they cared for us,” she said. “When I began my practicum, I realized how much I really learned in my college years. I was trained well, and it became easy to jump into the career successfully.”
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