What Is Field Placement Really Like?

What Is Field Placement Really Like?

Tara is a first year social work student at Grant MacEwan University. She is a mature student who is just completing her first semester, and her first field placement.

My current field placement is with Family and Community Support Services (FCSS). Within FCSS there is an umbrella of support services; I work with a variety of individuals who are at many different functioning levels and life stages. My clients are challenged with a wide range of developmental limitations associated with the diagnosis of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD). I had no prior experience or exposure in regards to FASD.

My practicum has shown me a world that is full of struggles and sadness. But I feel that working with clients with FASD is my calling, and I am so fortunate to have the opportunity to work with and be trained by the dedicated staff at FCSS.

My field placement is an exciting and fast paced learning environment where I am challenged, yet have the freedom to make mistakes — this has been incredible for my growth. I am exposed daily to home visits which range from low to extreme situations/issues; this is a great way to think on my feet and have to make decisions quickly while maintaining empathy and staying ethical.

This field placement has given each me a greater perspective of some of the people requiring services and support, and how I need to approach my practice as a social worker.