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Career Development

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Alanna Whittier

on 22 March 2014

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Transcript of Career Development

DCF Case Manager
Job Duties
Perform specialized daily tasks
Interviewing clients
Reviewing case files
Conducting assessments
Conferring with other Professionals
Creating goal plans
Monitoring clients in regards to the goal plan
Specialized Skills Necessary for the Position
Active listening
Critical thinking
Problem solving
Judgement and decision making
Opportunities and Income
This is a growing field which means more positions are readily becoming available in Vermont and across the nation.

Average salary is about $40,000 annually.
Average salary in Vermont is about $38,000 annually.
Service Coordinator
Job Duties
Evaluate staff and volunteers to ensure the effective use of resources.
Recruit and hire staff and volunteers.
Network with other agencies and organizations.
Oversee administrative procedures.
Direct staff and volunteers.
Prepare and maintain records and reports.
Active listening and speaking.
Time management.
Management of personal resources.
Education and Opportunities
A Bachelor's degree in a related field such as human or social services is usually sufficient to fill the education requirements. Many times experience in the field is necessary.

There is fast growth in this field with projections of over 55,000 job opening before the year 2022. This gives opportunity to many across the country and also in Vermont.
Describe your Process in this assignment. How did you get started? What steps did you take to complete this assignment?
I already knew I wanted to research case management through DCF and service coordination, so from there I began the career exploration aspect of the project using the examples provided. I used the DCF website and O*NET to do my research. Then I contacted my area agency to set up an interview with a mental health case manager. Upon completion of my interview I organized the most pertaining information to put into my presentation.

Continued education to keep current on these skills is necessary.

A Master's or Bachelors degree in social work or human services is usually required for hire in such a position, along with experience in the field. Most employers are looking for experience with children and/or needy families.
The national average salary for this position is approximately $60,000 annually.

For Vermonters the average annual salary is approximately $53,000. Which is a high middle income position.
Career Development
I interviewed a local case manager for mental health. She carries a case load from between 10 and 15 consumers, which can be a lot for a single person. I was surprised to find out she didn't have a degree upon hire in this field she was able to work her way up through career growth. Although generally hire in her position prefers someone with a Bachelor's degree. She worked her way up the ranks within the Mental Health agency and explained that there are several more positions above her. Her agency promotes job growth and offers specific training when necessary. She is salaried for 37.5 hrs a week, which is an average work week with the few exceptions of emergency situations in which she may work several more hours.
Interview Cont.
Her daily job duties involve:
Coordinating services for consumers.
Manage in home support.
Coordinate employment opportunities for consumers.
Attending all medical appointments including dental and vision.
Completing the proper paperwork.
The most important skills necessary for the position:
Behavioral Training
Time management
U.S Department of Labor. (2012).
Summary Report
for: Child, Family, and School Social Workers.
Retrieved from: http://onetonline.org
Vermont Agency of Human Services,
Department of Children and Families. (2014).
Careers at DCF.
Retrieved from Vermont Department of Children and Families Website: http://www.dcf.vermont.gov/careers

In your opinion, what is social work? What does it mean to be a social worker? What characteristics, traits, or values are important for an individual working in this field? What evidence do you have to support your thinking here?
Social work is a career in helping those who may be less fortunate or find themselves in a position of vulnerability. A social worker is a person who is prepared to set his/her differences aside to make a difference in the community or lives of others. A social worker must be a strong individual who has the ability to be unbiased, understanding, compassionate, educated, and prepared to push the limits. The research I have done on case managers and service coordinators, coupled with my interview support my thinking in what it means and takes to be a social worker.
Before doing this assignment, what did you know about the types of jobs that existed in the field of social work?
Before starting this research I knew of many jobs in the field but knew little about them. I mainly connected social work to case management, mental health, schools, addictions, and corrections, but I was uninformed about the many different positions within each of these areas. I focused my case management research on children and families, but found case management opportunities in each of the fields above. Each type of case management has many of the same objectives and necessary skills but is customized to the population it is directly in contact with.
The most rewarding part of her job is "Being able to see individuals who didn't have much become part of the community and independent." She really enjoys making a difference in her clients lives.

The most difficult part of her job is how time consuming the paper work is. It takes away face to face time with her clients. Although it is necessary to keep records and ensure her consumers are getting as many resources as they can it can be overwhelming.

The burn out rate for a position such as this is high due to the amount of stress "they're putting thirteen peoples lives in my hands". She describes her job as having to be responsible for the lives of her consumers because many of them are unable to be independent. In order to avoid burn out she has learned to leave work at work by knowing there are systems in place such as emergency hotlines, when she is unavailable to help.
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