Being a Student Intern at the ISJC

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Released 13 March 2012

Alyssa Miller is a social work student currently completing her placement with the International Social Justice Commission. We are very excited to have Alyssa join the team as a practicum intern. Alyssa writes about her background, passions and hopes for her time at the ISJC and beyond.

Hello! My name is Alyssa Miller and I am the new student intern at the International Social Justice Commission. I currently attend Evangel University in Missouri, where I will be graduating (finally!) in May. I will be spending the next four months as an advocate and researcher at the Salvation Army in order to fulfill the practicum requirements for my Bachelors in Social Work. My passion lies in the issue of gender equality, where I will pursue research on themes of sexism in culture, ultimately comparing ethnicity, religion, and sexual orientation. In addition, gender equality is a topic not uncommon to the UN and NGOs with which I will be working. One of the UN’s eight Millennium Development Goals to be accomplished within our lifetime includes to “promote gender equality and empower women.” As an intern at the ISJC, I will be granted access to committee meetings and task forces that advocate for girls, women, and gender equality around the world.

I am incredibly excited to work with ISJC for the purpose of opening new doors to fellow social workers. As a degree, focus is placed almost solely on clinical practice and working with individuals. Social workers are resource and network junkies but often feel restricted to working with individual clients in need of social services. However, I am at ISJC as an example for social workers pondering a different route. Without losing the fundamentals of social work, I use resources and networking skills to incur change on a macro scale. I assess policies and advocacy efforts with the systems perspective, and I implement the planned change process in dealings with committee members, UN representatives, and NGO officials. Through this social work is the foundation of my career as an advocate for social justice. Therefore, I encourage the social workers of my generation and the next to think outside the box. Put passion to work and allow fire to spread to unimaginable places. Whether as a group therapist, a hospice caseworker, or an NGO advocate, there is nothing a social worker cannot do. I hope to present this experience as yet another pathway to achieving social justice through the avenue of macro social work.

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