Social Work Connects to the Community
Internships: Rene Alpert
This summer I had the amazing opportunity to intern at two organizations that complemented my social work education thanks to the SEE-Beyond Award and the Social Work Department. The SEE-Beyond award is one of the many funded internship awards Skidmore offers to students interning over the summer. I would encourage any student even considering an unpaid internship to check out the link below and learn how you can get Skidmore funding. Each internship offered me something different and allowed me to explore the social work field through different lenses and with different populations.
My first internship was at Brooklyn Defender Services, which offers legal services to clients who would not be able to retain a lawyer otherwise. There are social workers on staff to place clients in treatment programs and provide verbal and written advocacy for court cases. During my time there I helped find programs, read mitigation reports, attend court, and meet clients to be another member of their support team. At this internship I was able to see what a social worker does in the criminal justice system and also get practice working with clients. For social work students considering law school or even ones interested in the criminal justice system, interning at a public defenders office will give you a great chance to see what happens from both a law and social work standpoint.
My second internship was at a Refugee Youth Summer Academy, run by the International Rescue Committee. This Summer Academy was for refugee youth who had limited formal education, but were planning on entering the New York City public school system in the fall. The students were using this summer to get used to formal education so they would be more comfortable going to school. I was a Peer Counselor for high school students and assisted in daily classroom activities. This included leading group activities, tutoring, homework help, and most importantly encouraging the students to practice speaking English. As a Peer Counselor, I was also a mentor to my students and offered any advice I could. For social work students considering going into an education setting, a summer school will show you what it would be like to work in this type of environment.
If you have any questions about my experience, internships, or the Skidmore awards you can e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Funded Internship booklet (This is the booklet from last year. The Career Development Center will have news for next summer posted in January.)
International Rescue Committee website. Check out the volunteer section for opportunities to get involved!