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KJE88

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  1. My cohort is full of amazing supportive people. I really cannot say enough good things about the people sitting beside me in class. I can't speak to other years, but our cohort seems to get along really well, and I have learned just as much from my classmates as my profs (and classes are set up in a way that makes this possible). I LOVE that we have our own campus. Only social work, and only Master/PhD level students in our building. I do occasionally go to the main campus to use the library in the evenings/ on weekends though. There are around 75 people in my cohort and we are typically split into 3 sections for each class (25 per class), sometimes there are 4 sections. We occasionally have some of the part time students in our classes and we also have music therapy students who join us for the Individuals class. There will always be some profs who are better than others but I can honestly say for the most part I have loved my profs, we have some pretty incredible people teaching our classes. We are referred to as colleagues by our profs and my experience has been that they are open to learning from us. Our profs know who we are by name and we are on a first name basis with them. They are very open to the needs of their students, and seem to truly care about our wellbeing. I will say that it is not as clinically focused as I would like, but I do feel that I am getting the clinical component at placement, and although my end goal is clinical social work I feel like the social justice class and community development class were essential. They were actually my two favourite classes so far (mostly because the profs were brilliant). Having the indigenous stream of study in the building enriches our experience as well (guest lectures, faculty members who are indigenous elders, indigenous faculty teach the indigenous knowledge in social work course, and invitations to events put on by the indigenous stream students). Another opportunity is a program called Walls to Bridges, started by one of our profs, and which is now being run through other universities as well, but it provides students the opportunity to take one of their classes alongside inmates in a prison setting. Super cool opportunity! I haven’t been able to work it into my schedule this year, but fingers crossed for next year! You can check out this link, part of it was filmed in my class when Tina came to do a guest lecture (side note, if you choose Laurier- take a class with Shoshona, she is amazing!): https://twitter.com/TheAgenda/status/1068549936487239691 The placement process is a bit of a shit show but from what I've heard from friends at other schools this seems to be the case with a lot of the programs. I would say this is my largest complaint about the program. Also, just an FYI- next year they are extending our lunch period to make more time for lunch time workshops, which means you will be stuck in class until 5:30pm on class days. This will definitely make it more difficult to find part time work, just something to keep in mind when planning how you are going to survive financially! Especially now that our lovely premier has taken away free tuition #notbitterattall. First semester you have Monday and Friday off so that makes it easier to have a part time job, second semester is more difficult, especially if your placement is not in the city you live in. I had to stop working this semester because I couldn’t make it work with the placement/ class schedule. There are people in the program who have been able to make it work though, especially those who got placements close to where they live, or have jobs that are cool with only weekend availability. My GPA was not initially high enough, and my undergrad was completely unrelated (biology). I took social science courses through Athabasca and got high 80s-90s but that didn't really seem to have an impact. Then I found the online pre-req courses for the Waterloo post grad BSW and took 7 of those, again grades in high 80s-90s, this seemed to make the difference because I was accepted after doing them. I think this is for a couple of reasons: a) They were social work courses directly related to the program and I could demonstrate I was competent in the area through high grades b) It meant I had an academic reference from a prof who was also a social worker (also happened to be a graduate of Laurier so that may have worked to my advantage) c) Because I was taking social work courses, I knew the language they would be looking for in the application and the types of things I said in my personal statement changed. So, if you need to boost your GPA I would definitely recommend the Waterloo BSW pre-req courses over other online courses such as those at Athabasca. It would also open the option of applying to the 1 year BSW as a backup if you don't get into an MSW. I also focused heavily on gaining experience in the field from the first time I applied to when I finally got in. I believe I had about 4000 hours (volunteer and paid combined) when I applied last year. As I gained more experience I also began to talk about those experiences differently in my personal statement and my CV. Volunteering at a distress centre was a valuable experience for anyone looking for something that looks good on the application. This is also an easy way to break into the field if you do not have a related education because that can be really difficult. It also helped prepare me for the individuals class and as I moved into field placement because I was already familiar with some counselling skills and very comfortable talking about suicide with clients. Additionally, the distress centre where I volunteered (and I would think this is the case at many) was very familiar with writing references for students applying to grad school, and wrote fabulous social work related references. For Laurier (this is the only school I applied to so I can only speak to it) - I would make sure there is an emphasis on social justice issues in your personal statement. Ensure you have socially located yourself, and make it clear you are able to engage in reflexivity. There has been a huge focus on these things in all classes and this will be attractive to the faculty on the committee who chooses successful applicants.My successful personal statement had a larger emphasis on these things than previous years when I was not successful. Include lived experience. As much as it is no ones business what your struggles have been, it seems that those who include it in their personal statement are more likely to get in. If you were looking for more specific details feel free to send me a private message
  2. Hello to all the 2 year Laurier hopefuls! Recently decided to look back at this forum and reminisce about the journey I've been on since I was in your position last year (and a couple years before that as well, as I was not accepted the first time I applied) I've seen a couple posts speculating about when the Laurier 2 year (on campus) offers will go out and I remember how anxiety provoking it was that Laurier seems to be one of the last programs to send out acceptance letters! Last year acceptances went out April 3rd and the years prior to that I got my rejection around that date as well (rejections were sent by snail mail). So you've probably got about 2 weeks of that constant refresh of your email and Loris to go. You will get an email to whatever email address you used when you applied to the program, so no need to keep checking Loris (this is how they did it last year anyway). Wishing you all the best of luck and reminding you to take care of your mental health as you wait over the next couple of weeks, I know how agonizing the wait is! For those of you who are successful and do choose Laurier, it is a wonderful program, and so far it has been a great experience.
  3. Hi dem13, def write it as one big essay rather than separate questions. I was told my personal statement was really strong by the prof who wrote my reference for me (he wanted my whole application before writing it) and I got into the Laurier 2 year MSW for the fall. If you are struggling a bit (I know I def did the first year I applied!!!) feel free to send me a private message and I can try to help.
  4. Congrats! I'm starting the 2 year program in Sept as well! I created a fb group a while back, you are welcome to join. Some of the members are in the 2 year program and some started the online program in May. https://www.facebook.com/groups/165235444294203/?ref=bookmarks
  5. I don't think Laurier sends a package in the mail like other schools. I did not receive one. I'm pretty sure it is just the email and then you have to log into LORIS.
  6. After accepting my offer one of the emails they sent said: "I know the question of how you will finance your education is an important one. The Faculty of Social Work has a limited amount of research assistantship positions available each term. Information regarding these positions will be emailed to you late summer. You can also find information pertaining to additional funding sources and financial assistance at the Graduate Studies website. Information will be updated for the next academic year, early June." That is all the information I have received. I believe two people on here said they were offered a $10 000 scholarship with their offer of admission.
  7. I have created a Facebook group for Laurier's 2 year MSW I have it set as a closed group so you will have to send a request to join. It made me add a friend to start the group so there is currently someone who is not actually in our class but once someone else joins I can remove her @SWMommy @Nervousme @2year.msw @johnhamont I tagged the people who mentioned they were looking to connect but obviously everyone is welcome! https://www.facebook.com/groups/165235444294203/?ref=group_header
  8. SAME. And I took two classes this semester so I really should be studying for finals lol When my boyfriend did the program he did not have classes everyday - but he graduated in 2013 and the website talks about the "new" program, so things may have changed. Based on what I have found on that link I posted for the current students, we definitely will not have class every day during the terms we have placement because you are at placement all day 3 times a week. Looks like placement would be Mon- Wed and classes Thurs and Friday maybe?
  9. No problem. I've been reading everything on the Laurier website (which is actually where I found that link) tonight and did look at the online stuff briefly... you would have a lot of field placement with that program according to the schedule but it doesn't give you an actual number of hours. https://students.wlu.ca/programs/social-work/msw/program-requirements/index.html
  10. I found a group for previous years but I haven't been able to find anything for 2018-2020. I don't mind starting one but maybe do a quick search before I do to make sure I'm not missing something.
  11. I got an email with a link to this page: https://students.wlu.ca/programs/social-work/msw/index.html Info is for the 2017/18 academic year but everything on here is super helpful!
  12. The website says: "Once admitted to the program, students participate fully in the placement planning process which begins immediately upon their acceptance to the Faculty of Social Work. The Field Education Office communicates with the students upon acceptance to the program and provides a detailed outline of the placement planning and matching process." I have accepted my offer and I've already received a couple of different emails but nothing about placements yet. I will definitely let you know if I get an email regarding potential placement agencies. It sounds like you can even propose an agency if there is somewhere you have in mind.
  13. Is anyone else interested?? I kinda stopped using Facebook other than to keep track of friends who have moved out of the country/province but someone started a group for one of the classes I took last semester and it was actually helpful.
  14. Not sure if I am understanding your question correctly. Do you mean how many hours of field practice do you have to complete during your MSW to be able to register with the college of social workers following graduation? I would assume that every program with accredidation would require you to complete at least the minimum number of hours but this document might help answer your question. Scroll to page 13 of the document where it talks about field education. http://caswe-acfts.ca/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/CASWE-ACFTS-Standards-11-2014.pdf
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