Did you know JFCS counselors have been mentoring social work graduate students for over 40 years? Social work students who do their practicum at JFCS have a unique experience that many other agencies cannot offer. Students are invited to experience other disciplines and departments at JFCS. “Mentoring students is essential, because practicum and intern students need both clinical experiences and clinical consultations about their clients, to grow their therapeutic expertise,” said Lauren Kehr, LCSW Therapist, and Social Work Practicum Student Supervisor at JFCS. “Our clients also benefit because they receive the advantages of both their designated student therapist and that therapists’ supervisor. Additionally, students participate in weekly treatment planning meetings with all the clinical staff, providing a world of therapeutic interventions and discussions” says Lauren.
This year, Stephanie Barnett and Jason Allen, students from the Kent School of Social Work at the University of Louisville chose to do their practicum at JFCS. They have been assets to the JFCS counseling team. Both recently shared that this past year has been an enriching and fulfilling hands-on learning experience for them. Stephanie recently said, “I chose JFCS because I had heard so many good things about the agency within the community and from other students. I have loved working here, and have learned so much from this experience…This practicum has solidified that I am in the field that is right for me, and after it ends I hope to begin my career as a therapist and a social worker. I am looking forward to where life takes me!”
Jason, chose to become a therapist because, “People are beautiful, incredibly complex creations, with an innate desire to connect with one another. Unfortunately, that process is difficult and sometimes very painful. I want to do my part to help them through this process, in whatever way that I can.” He also reflected that his practicum added a human component to his graduate work. “I have spent so much time reading, studying and writing about all of these theories and interventions that are designed to fix the problem, however in my short experience at JFCS I have learned that it is imperative, to allow every person the space for their experience. It is in those moments where you let go of the control that people tend to grow in ways they never thought possible.”
Stephanie, also shared “It has been so helpful having so many experienced counselors around to go to for advice with a client. Everyone is willing to help, and the whole agency made me feel like part of the team, not just a student!”
We wish Stephanie and Jason the best as they approach graduation in a few weeks.
JFCS offers a wide variety of counseling options from Adult, Family, and Child Therapy, Counseling for Adolescents, Parent Coaching Pre-Marital & Couples Counseling. If you would like more information on our counseling services or to set up an appointment, please contact JFCS at (502) 452-6341.