Write an essay where you tell us about what drives you in your pursuit of your graduate degree.

I want to pursue my master’s in social work in order to work and study at the same time. I enjoy the work I do now as a Paralegal. I strongly desire to continue working to pay off schooling and student loans. At the same time, I seek to practice balance of school and work, which includes assisting clients through their immigration application process, interviews, court appearances, meetings, and translation services. A graduate degree will help expose me to field placements known to me and new to me. Through a graduate degree, I hope to continue building a strong bridge between mental health and the immigration process. I have my future professional goals. I aspire to work alongside an attorney and build a practice which not only provides legal services, but also human/mental health services for clients throughout their entire case handling process; or I wish to work for a nonprofit as an essential addition to their immigration team as the Social Worker. I find working with children has always been my biggest asset. I have a way of making them feel loved and listened, something often times they feel they cannot accomplish with adults. After some time gaining experience and working alongside other professionals, I hope to open my own practice and help low-income families, especially the Spanish-speaking community by offering mental health services. I want to help people understand their rights, seek resources, and have the support and understanding needed to be strong, contributing members of society. I want to help people feel and know they have a voice that matters and help fight the stigma behind mental health practices and seeking help. I strongly believe obtaining my graduate degree in Social Work will help me accomplish my personal goals, professional aspirations, and develop the skills and experiences to help me succeed as a Social Worker.

Natalia from New York
Columbia University