Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Blue juice to chase away the blues

Well, I had no Vitamin K, so I opted for B vitamins in a large bottle of blueberry/blackberry juice. Maybe it was the sugar, or the hydration, or the vitamins, or the conversation I had with Jerry, but I felt better.

Jerry thought I should tone the letter down a little, make it absolutely non-confrontational, and play up the acupuncture training angle. Which I did, and sent it to DOTS. No word so far. (I also saw Jason, who told me, in no uncertain terms, that I am going to graduation whether I want to or not. Apparently I've played a larger role than I realize in keeping a number of students in the program.)

I mentioned my need for acupuncture training to our lecturer tonight. He was pleased to learn I'm fighting the school -- thought it demonstrated strength of character and showed I was probably the most interesting student here. He was entirely willing to supervise me during a two-week stint to make up some internship hours. In fact, he would be thrilled if my school started a full-year internship at his clinic.

I think it's a natural fit. The clinic's in Mott Haven, one of the most blighted areas of the Bronx -- i.e., one of the most blighted areas in America. For social workers, it's the mothership. Settlement workers 100 years ago would be moving in. You're working with traumatized substance abusers, many of whom are dually diagnosed -- one of the most challenging client populations. If you can work with them, you can work with anybody.

You're also learning an actual skill and clinical intervention, as opposed to mere theory -- something social work school doesn't really seem to teach. The clinic takes a holistic approach to substance abuse treatment -- acupuncture is only one component. There's also 12-step meetings, skills training classes, therapy groups, etc. So there's so much to learn, so much to do.

And our school needs all the internship locations it can get. Because there are a lot of social work schools in this city competing to place their students in a limited number of agencies -- several of which don't want anything to do with Dean Evillene.

But I still felt pretty awful tonight, because only four people, including me, showed up for the lecture. Despite me papering the school with flyers, posting tons of online announcements, etc. We had a great discussion, but honestly, what is wrong with all my fellow students who didn't have class during his lecture? Acupuncture and social work go together like peas and carrots. I can't believe that students immersed in our touchy-feely, culturally competent school environment don't get that and want a piece of it.

Oh well. He knows I tried, and with any luck I'll be sticking needles into clients sometime in May or June.
Copyright (c) "Ayelet Survivor"

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