GMercyU Social Work Students Partake in NASW Advocacy Day

March is National Social Work Month, and GMercyU's Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) students have been working hard to prepare for their future profession, both inside and outside the classroom, as well as educating the public about the invaluable contributions social workers make to our communities every day.

On March 25, GMercyU BSW students traveled to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania to join hundreds of other social work students across the state in the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Legislative Education and Advocacy Day. Joined by hundreds of other social work students from across the state, GMercyU BSW students prepared research on their local and state representatives, which they used to advocate for a house bill 390 to advocate for school social worker certification.

Encouraging students to participate in the NASW's Legislative Education Day is just one of the various initiatives that GMercyU's BSW degree program uses to prepare students for an enriching career in a fast-growing field. The roles of social workers are expanding more and more every year, and the social workers of the future need to evolve with them.

"Our BSW program strives to prepare students for competitive job placement by responding to recent trends in the field of social work," said Janice Nuss, MSW, LCSW, who is GMercyU's Assistant Professor and Director of Field Education for the BSW program. "Gwynedd Mercy University is uniquely positioned to respond to the growing need for competence and highly qualified social work professionals in this community."

In addition to Advocacy Day, GMercyU's BSW students have access to various opportunities to further develop their skills and broaden their expertise. To address the growing need for social workers in health care jobs, the BSW program partnered with the Frances M. Maguire School of Nursing and Health Professions to participate in interprofessional simulation experiences that cover trauma, case management in a hospital setting, and integration of behavioral health and primary care. The program is also known for its inclusion of international social work in curriculum, which gives GMercyU students the opportunity to provide service on an international level while practicing important social work skills in community organizing.

Participating in these real-world experiences, such as advocating for new legislation in our state capital, is just another way our future social work Distinctive Mercy Graduates are gearing up to change the world for the better, no matter what path they choose to pursue.