Where are you from?
What brought you to UK?
I always knew I loved UK athletics, but I knew that a good sports program could not be the only reason I chose to go a school. Because of this, I toured UK and a few other schools. I began comparing the schools using criteria such as residence halls, campus environment, location, opportunities, and the way I was treated on my campus visit. After looking at these criteria and more, UK won every single time. That’s when I knew that UK was more than just a sports team that I could root for. It was a place that could truly become my home away from home.
What lead you to social work?
I always knew that I wanted to help people with whatever profession I pursued. However, when I entered college, I did not know what that profession would look like. After extensive research, I realized how broad and incredible social work was. I was instantly drawn to it, and I am extremely happy with my decision. My desire to help people has only grown since entering the College of Social Work, and I have endless opportunities to do just that.
What extracurricular activities have you participated in at UK?
I am involved in the Lewis Honors College. Through this, I was an Honors peer mentor. This means that I lived in the residence halls and had freshman mentees assigned to me. My role was to provide advice/guidance when needed, to host events in the residence halls, and to help the freshman as they navigate their first year in honors.
I am also involved at the Visitor Center. Aside from giving tours and working the front desk, I am the director of the Wildcat Ambassadors Program. I organize and lead the students that volunteer with the Wildcat Ambassador Program. The program is a great way for students that are passionate about UK to interact with prospective students to share their love and excitement for the university. I was an ambassador my freshman year and I feel extremely excited and blessed to be able to lead that program now.
I was also K Crew leader my junior year. K Week is a student’s first week on campus. It helps to acclimate the student to Lexington and the UK. My role was to guide a specific group of students through K Week and to answer any questions they might have about UK or Lexington. I loved getting to interact with the new freshman at UK, and I loved getting to see what the next wave of leaders at UK looked like.
What are you interested in doing after you graduate?
I would like to help individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities in the community when I graduate. During my first practicum I learned about numerous modern day issues facing the disabled and I want to work to improve these situations. I do not exactly what this will look like. It might be case management; it might be direct practice; it might be counseling. Regardless of the avenue I pursue vocationally, I want to help make the world, and specifically Kentucky, a better place of individuals with disabilities.
Where did you complete your practicum?
I completed my first practicum at Employment Solutions, an adult day training agency for adults with disabilities. I experienced such wonderful opportunities such as going to various conferences, sitting in on therapy sessions, lobbying at Frankfort, and working with the clients on their self-advocacy skills.
Anything else about your UK or social work story you would like to share?
Thanks to the College of Social Work, I fully believe that I can and will make a difference in my community. The college has empowered and encouraged me to be the best version of myself. I believe the sky is the limit, and I will always be grateful for the solid foundation that I received at UK.