So my first blog…let me tell you a little bit more about me and my program.
I am new to the Lower Mainland. I have moved down here with my family (two children and significant other) to learn at Stenberg. I searched for years for career training that would interest me, and that I would benefit from in the long run. I finally one day looked into Mental Health and Addiction. The first school that popped up on my search was Stenberg College. I watched a video online about the Community Mental Health and Addictions program. After much interest, I phoned in. I asked for information, and the Program Advisor was happy to answer any questions about the course. About a week later I got a package in the mail about the program that I had looked into. I lived up in Kitimat, so a week was pretty quick! I did all of the registration requirements, and a year later, here I am!
Right now I am about five months into the program and I can honestly say that I could not have made a better choice! First off, my cohort was placed in the Surrey Campus. It is nice to be among other students and staff, but a few months in, we were transferred to the Vancouver Campus located on Main and Terminal. That area may seem a bit “rough around the edges” to some, but doing the work that we will be doing, it fits perfectly.
We are now on our thirteenth week of Integrated Practicum Experience and by now we know the Downtown East side well. My class has had many types of experiences working with different SRO’s with people with mental health and addictions issues that they face on a daily basis. Some experiences that I have heard were good, like personal growth and big steps being taken in life, to some not so good. All in all, these experiences are GOOD experiences, considering what we are all planning on going into. Some students in my cohort plan on working with youth, some with elderly, and some even are planning on using this program as a stepping stone into other programs offered at Stenberg.
My plans when I graduate are to work with youth. I feel that in the life experiences that I have, I would work best with them. I want to be there to talk, when they feel that they have nobody, to help assist them on their ways to a (hopefully) good path in life. As a teenager, I struggled with a lot of issues. For whatever my reason, my parents were not there to guide me down the right path. I felt that there was no one that understood what I was going through. I found myself lost and alone. I was going to school in New Westminster, where I found myself confiding in a Aboriginal Youth Care Counsellor. She was amazing. I want to be that person. I want to help. That is why I am so interested in learning all of the things that Stenberg has to offer. I am going to take full advantage of this education opportunity because I feel it is what I was meant to do.