I graduated from Valpo in August 1979 with my BSW. I am looking forward to completing my MSW at the University at Buffalo School of Social Work. I have been working on a self assessment that defines who I am as a social worker and what I base my practice on. I find that the information that I learned 30 years ago still has relevance, and is actually the basis for many of the “new” approaches and theories I have been learning about and had unknowingly previously incorporated into my professional work.

I have worked in social work positions for 25 of the last 30 years. I have worked with youth in group homes, mentally ill/MICA in institutions and in community settings, developmentally disabled in community settings and for the past 15 years with geriatric individuals in assisted living, skilled nursing homes and at Hospice. I have held positions of direct patient care, case manager, crisis specialist, undergraduate field educator and director of social work in two skilled nursing facilities for five years.

I have never been bored with any of the positions I have held because I was originally trained to creatively solve problems. I have found that the work of “helping” individuals define what their concerns are, and empowering them to make changes or make sense of their life status is what brings satisfaction for a job well done. I live for the “aha” moments that come across the individual’s faces I work with that tell me I have made a difference.

Sarah Brenner Sabatowski
Valpo Class of 1979

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