Mea Robles, 27 July, 2022
Mea Robles shares what it’s like studying social work at QUT.
I have always been passionate about social justice, helping others and hearing their stories. Social work is about responding to social injustices and facilitating change. I personally knew a social work practitioner who studied at QUT and they really sold to me the idea of how beneficial the practical approach to learning was at QUT—how they were able to easily apply what they learnt in the classroom into their field of practice.
One of my favourite units has been Practice Theories, where we learn about different social theories and their relevance to social work and human services. My favourite piece of assessment so far has been for this unit. We were essentially required to produce a fictional performance that personified different social theories. This was extremely enjoyable as I was able to creatively collaborate with a big group of around 30 other students and learn more about social theories through the entire process. It was not the standard 2000-word essay, so it really allowed us to hone multiple different skills like critical thinking, collaboration, creative production and communication.
In class I particularly enjoy discussions or debates that occur. My lecturers and tutors are always referring to current affairs, pop culture and anything that’s happening in contemporary society and allow us as students to make critical connections to how these influences shape people’s everyday lives as well as how to address the injustices that subsequently occur.
My lecturers and tutors also bring stories to the classroom from their past or current practice. Hearing how they navigate different systems and structures and how they have personally approached different situations has significantly helped in contextualising my learning. I recently went for an interview for a role within the social work field that commonly required qualifications, however I was still offered the role despite not having an qualifications as I was able to articulate how I would practically apply a critical social work perspective within my role.
The field of social work is incredibly diverse and offers lots of different opportunities in different settings, you won't necessarily be stuck in the same role throughout your whole life. You might end up working in areas such as counselling, family mediation, education or community development.
For someone considering what to study at university, I would advise taking the time to think about the type of future and world you wish to live in. Through this reflection, you may be able to see where you fit in that, how your interests and passions align with this and how you might like to contribute to such a vision.