Fall 2012 begins a special international partnership in social work. The FSU College of Social Work and Jönköping University in Jönköping, Sweden collaborated to provide an exciting exchange opportunity for both universities’ students.
Students taking part in the exchange have the opportunity to take take a full-time course load and receive credit for required or elective classes for a semester in an international location. This opportunity is being offered to College of Social Work students for the spring 2013 and fall 2013 semesters and pay FSU tuition and fees. (For information, contact Dr. Dina Wilke at email@example.com
The partnership between Jönköping University and the FSU College of Social Work officially begins this semester with the arrival of Jönköping University BSW student Jessica Larsson at the FSU College of Social Work’s Tallahassee main campus.
A Brief Interview with BSW student Jennifer Larsson
What are you studying in the social work field? What have been your experiences in the field so far?
I’m doing my internship at the Alzheimer’s Project Inc. This agency’s primary goal is to provide services for caregivers for people with Alzheimer’s Disease. I’m also taking the seminar course that comes with my internship – and this gives me the opportunity to learn about the welfare systems in the USA – what’s alike with Sweden and what’s not. Discussing and sharing thoughts is a good way to develop oneself and to gain more experiences. Both my internship and the seminar’s course have already taught me very valuable things for my future work as a social worker and this is only the beginning! In the agency, I get a lot of contact with clients, both with people who are sick, but also their caregivers who are in crisis. A placement where empathy and respect are the most valuable things.
What is it like in Sweden and at Jönköping University?
Jönköping is a beautiful city, located in the south of Sweden. It’s also located by the second largest lake in Sweden, which means that there are a lot of cozy restaurants and cafés that you can enjoy any time of the year. Jönköping is a two-hour drive from Gothenburg, and a three-hour drive from the capital city Stockholm. The climate in Sweden is a typical northern country. Cold winters with snow, warm and sunny during spring, summer and fall (although it tends to cool off during fall).
What interested you most in coming to the United States to study social work?
Working with people has always felt sort of like a call for me. Before I decided to begin my education as a social worker, I actually headed towards another education – international work. Why I chose social work instead was because of the wide knowledge and perspective one gets concerning human lives and how to work with exposed groups of people. Now I feel that it couldn’t have been a better choice for me. Why I wanted to come to USA to study social work was that I thought I could combine my dreams together. I’m taught to work with people in crisis, and I also got the opportunity to take another course – Living with AIDS – a course that got me hooked already by it’s name. In this course I will learn about the virus HIV, how it’s transmitted, how to make a prevention plan, how to meet people in crisis and much more. I have for a long time wanted to work preventing human trafficking.
Is there anything in particular you hope to learn and experience while visiting the U.S. and the FSU College of Social Work?
By learning from other cultures, from other people and to have an open mind widens your perspective on life and I could think of no better way to combine my dream. Florida State University has a very good reputation, not to mention the lovely climate!
What could you tell a College of Social Work student about what they would be learning at Jönköping University?
To study social work at the School of Health Science in Jönköping , you will learn about different international (and national) social welfare politics, psychology and sociology, laws, how to work with social change on the individual and group level. An education that creates deep friendships, and could change a person’s perspective on life.
The University of Jönköping also has great international programs, so being an international student gives the opportunity to connect with different cultures and meet a lot of new friends!
To learn more about exchange opportunities contact Dr. Dina Wilke (Associate Dean of Academic Affairs) at firstname.lastname@example.org and to learn about other study abroad opportunities contact Dr. Neil Abell (Director of International Programs) at email@example.com.