Welcome to The New Social Worker's Blog

The New Social Worker is the quarterly magazine for social work students and recent graduates, focusing on social work careers for those new to the profession. This blog is a companion to the free online magazine at http://www.socialworker.com.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Changes Around NYC

Whew! There have been some big changes happening around here since I last blogged... we've had temperatures over 100* and same sex marriage began to take effect!

First, thank goodness for all of the communities throughout the country who have been setting up cooling centers, giving out bottles of cold water, and otherwise doing whatever they're able to help keep the fragile members of their neighborhoods healthy during this time of extreme temperature! It's so wonderful to see people stepping up to help just because the need is there.

Second, as it's no secret where I (and the NASW) stand on the issue of same sex marriage, YAY for this! As more states legalize equality, I'm interested to see how our profession changes. Will our textbooks include more chapters on marriage therapy within same sex couples? Will our children & families texts have sections on same sex parents? Or will research show that there isn't much difference between couples and families of the same or opposing genders? Will more schools offer a focus in LGBT issues the way some offer for women's studies, gerontology, adolescents, etc.?

In the past two weeks, a city known for its size, its garbage piles, its supposed rudeness experienced 2 major threats to its people in terms of weather and bigotry. As someone living in the midst of it, I can tell you only what I saw. I witnessed elders playing in fountains with children in an attempt to cool off. I observed businesses handing out free ice water to overheated commuters. I viewed LGBT people become legally wed. I looked on while heterosexual people cheered for the newlyweds.

Perhaps the sidewalks feel tiny and the crowds massive, perhaps there are garbage piles, perhaps New Yorkers are more blunt and less hesitant to use curse words in regular speech, but certainly there is a sense of pride and of love here in NYC. I hope you feel it wherever you are!

Friday, July 22, 2011


Kryss is busy helping with the safety of senior citizens during the NYC heatwave which is bringing temperatures over 104* (heat index is over 115*). She will return next week with a new blog entry. In the meantime, here is a great interview by a fellow social worker, Suze Orman.


Friday, July 15, 2011

Bucket List

Hi All! I am beyond thrilled to be back, but I have to tell you, even more thrilling was crossing a goal off my list (to relax more often). It reminded me of this recent article: http://www.socialworkersspeak.org/cheers-and-jeers/doing-the-bucket-list.html

So now I’m wondering about bucket lists… from the time I was about 6 years old, I’ve had a “life goals list.” I’ve kept it written down and have added to it and crossed things off. It’s funny to read what my priorities were at different ages and it’s been a nice gift to myself that every goal has been attainable. Whether it’s “have my own room” or “complete a Master’s degree,” it’s been very rewarding for me to achieve and, to be honest, finally having my own bedroom at age 19 (first college apartment) felt just as monumental as graduation day. There’s just something about reaching a new milestone!

The longer I am in this post-school world, the more I realize how important this goal-setting process is. From our first moments post-conception through our final graduation, we have goals that are set for us; how many weeks along we’ve reached as a fetus, at what age we began to toddle, each report card in grade school, each term’s GPA in college, graduation. And then the abyss… or rather, the potential to feel as if everything else is just one day after the next. It’s been tricky for me to get the hang of, I won’t lie.

Here I am now, learning… learning to create new challenges and goals for myself, learning to find ways of not measuring myself by quarters or semesters or report cards or GPAs, learning to strike a new balance. For example, on my first day back from vacation, my goal was to meet with each staff member to check-in and to return emails and phone calls. Sure, I could have let myself be overwhelmed with the mounds of paperwork, but I could step back and recognize that as a goal for another day. At the end of the day, I walked out with all three of those goals met. I didn’t save the world or alter anyone’s life, but I felt pretty accomplished. Now? Well, now it’s onto that mound of paperwork! Tomorrow? *shrug* I’m thinking either sky-diving or reorganizing the office supply closet.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Must I Un-Friend Facebook? Exploring the Ethics of Social Media

The ethics article in the Summer 2011 issue of THE NEW SOCIAL WORKER addresses ethical issues related to social networking.  Is it possible to be a "blank slate" therapist in the era of social media?  Is it desirable or necessary for social workers to remove themselves from Facebook, Twitter, and other social media sites?  What are the ethical implications of NOT staying up-to-date and current on these technologies, which may be a big part of clients' lives?  Is there a happy medium?

Read the article at http://bit.ly/nPhATM and post your comments here.  We would like to hear your thoughts.

Linda Grobman, ACSW, LSW

Summer 2011 Issue of THE NEW SOCIAL WORKER Magazine Available Now!

Happy Summer 2011! Congratulations to all new social work graduates! The digital edition of the Summer 2011 issue of The New Social Worker magazine is now ready to download. It is available, free of charge, in PDF format, directly from The New Social Worker Web site.

To download the Summer 2011 issue, go to:

Then click on "Download." If the file opens in your Web browser, just click on "Save a Copy" or "File>Save Page as" and save the file to a location on your computer's hard drive.

If you have difficulty with the above link, here is another download link:

Articles from this issue are also available on our Web site (http://www.socialworker.com) in Web format.

Also, don't forget that THE NEW SOCIAL WORKER is now available in a full-color, high quality PRINT edition! If you love the feeling of holding your very own print copy of your magazine in your hands, you can purchase print copies of this issue and previous issues from:

Here are some highlights from this issue:

• Student Role Model: Cristen Cravath (in PDF version only)

• Ethics: Must I Un-Friend Facebook?

• Field Placement: Making the Workplace (or Field Placement) Work For You

• Featured Article: Peace Corps Master's International Program

• Tips for Making Home Visits in Child Welfare

• Understanding Care Coordination

• Beyond Housing

• Turtles

• SW 2.0: I Want You To Be Part of This Experience: Kickstarter

• Congrats to Recent Social Work Grads!

• Kryss Meets Career: 10 Things I've Learned in My First Post-MSW Job

• Book Reviews

...and more!

Did you know that when you read THE NEW SOCIAL WORKER in PDF format on your computer, you can click through to items as you read about them? Most URLs and e-mail addresses throughout the magazine are clickable. Give it a try!

Please visit our advertisers for this issue of THE NEW SOCIAL WORKER. They are:
• Temple University Harrisburg—http://www.temple.edu/harrisburg
• Child Welfare Information Gateway—http://www.childwelfare.gov
• Erikson Institute—http://www.erikson.edu/dualdegree
• USC School of Social Work—http://msw.usc.edu/newsocialworker
• Licensure Exams Inc.—http://socialworkexam.com

If you are looking for a professional social work job, or looking to hire a social worker, be sure to visit our online job site, SocialWorkJobBank.com (http://www.socialworkjobbank.com) today. Employers now have new options to post jobs to additional job boards in our network and to take advantage of monthly job posting specials.

Please let your colleagues, classmates, and/or students know about THE NEW SOCIAL WORKER, and the fact that it is a FREE social work resource. You can subscribe free to receive notifications of future issues  at http://www.socialworker.com/home/menu/Subscribe/

Friday, July 1, 2011

Following Through

As frequent readers discovered in my June 10th blog, I confessed to not being so great at taking time away and I pledged to work at correcting this.

With that in mind, I am taking a vacation... my first since I began this position in November, 2010.

Granted, I'm still me, so of course, I'll be spending a great deal of time with one of my social work (and life) mentors and I'll be reading a couple of books and writing their reviews for The New Social Worker Magazine.

But I promise, I'll make sure to spend some time on a jet ski, to put my toes in the sand, and to sleep in :)

There will be no post from Kryss on July 8th while she enjoys her vacation, but she plans to resume her weekly posting on July 15.