What is the Alberta Health Services Community Education Service?

The Community Education Service (CES) provides parents/caregivers and other community members with opportunities to access free, evidence-informed education sessions and resource materials to address child, youth, and family health and mental health needs.
The Community Education Service (CES) falls under Alberta Health Services' Child and Adolescent Addiction and Mental Health Programs (CAAMHP). We are housed in the Family and Community Resource Centre (FCRC) on the second floor of the Alberta Children's Hospital.

CES education sessions are hosted at the Alberta Children's Hospital and at various venues in Calgary and nearby communities. Many sessions are also available via telehealth/video-conference technology for those interested participants located within and outside of Calgary, and where telehealth/video-conference facilities are available.

In design and delivery of its education sessions, CES embraces the Family-Centred Care approach to building family and professional capacity by promoting families as active, fully-informed partners in the care of their children. CES also promotes the role of community partners as a vital support to children and families receiving care.

CES presenters and resource materials are drawn from:

  • CAAMHP Programs
  • Other Alberta Health Services' programs within the Calgary Zone
  • Calgary and area community agencies

Check out their extensive listing of upcoming sessions in their April newsletter:

Or on their website:

Student Advocates for Mental Health (SAMH)

This is a student club at the University of Calgary that aims to decrease stigma and discrimination about mental illnesses through education, advocacy and empowerment.

There will be events happening throughout the semester that students can become involved with.
For more information look at the Student Advocates for Mental Health website:

A special thank-you from a member of SWSA to the community:

I just wanted to say thank you very much for all your support with SWSA and promoting all the Social Work week events!  A big thank you to Liza Lorenzetti who helped me organize two child sexual abuse prevention workshops and had 58 people attend (the max per session was 30). There was a great turn out of social work and nursing students,
MRU students as well as community members/social workers from Calgary, Airdrie and Cochrane.
Also a big thank you to the social work students who volunteered/attended the ACSW conference!

Sharon Sheridan
SWSA Engagement Committee

Career and Employment Tip

by Angela Judge,
Career Specialist, Education and Social Work, Career Services

Many of you will be in the process of interviewing very soon.  When you are invited to an interview, remember the employer has three main questions: Can you do the job?  Do you want the job? How do you fit with the team? 
There are three tips to be successful in any interview:
1. Identify the relevant skills, knowledge and experience you have related to the job.  2. Understand the role and the organization you are applying for.  3. Finally, anticipate and practice the kind of questions they will ask based on the job description. If you need assistance in preparing for an interview, connect with Angela from some tips or to practice.  You can also practice interview questions via our Optimal tool from the comfort of your own home via this link:  https://ucalgary.optimalresume.ca/

Meet your SWSA Representative of the Month...

Allie Caputo

1. What route did you take to becoming a University of Calgary Social Work Student?   Where are you now in your studies?

I  am on the post diploma route, from Mount Royal University faculty of Social Work. I am really interested in clinical Social work, and my hope  is  to work in an Eating Disorder clinic.

2. Why did you decide to join the Social Work Students' Association?

Coming from a small tight knit faculty of Social Work from MRU, I really felt a sense of community there and I enjoyed walking into class and knowing who was actually sitting beside me, I also had great relationships with my professors. Starting at the University in Calgary in the fall, it was important to me that I got to know my fellow classmates and professors so I thought SWSA would be a great opportunity to allow me to do both.

3. What role do you play on SWSA?

I work closely with the finance committee and the external committee, but everyone works hard so I just try to pitch in wherever I can. Whether it be within those two portfolios or not.

4. What has been your favourite part of belonging to SWSA so far?

I have really enjoyed getting to know my classmates better, and learning from them as well! I often take for granted all the knowledge that my fellow classmates have.

5. What events are you looking forward to most in the upcoming year?

I am most looking forward to SWSA getting our swanky t-shirts ordered so we can wear them to the various events we attend in the community so the community recognizes our cohesiveness and support. I am also looking forward to spending time this summer in finding out various events that support can take part in. I also would like SWSA to offer more development that is professional opportunities over the course of next year so I am going to look into some options. 

What’s Up in Social Work?

In honour of Social Work Week (March 3 – 9, 2013), the University of Calgary Social Work Students’ Association is hosting a series of events open to the public!  Please join us in celebrating!

On Tuesday, March 5 at 6:30 pm in the Cassio Rooms in MacEwan Hall at the University of Calgary, the award winning documentary “It’s A Girl” will be screened.  The film tells the stories of abandoned and trafficked girls, of women who suffer extreme dowry-related violence, of brave mothers fighting to save their daughters’ lives, and of other mothers who would kill for a son. Global experts and grassroots activists put the stories in context and advocate different paths towards change, while collectively lamenting the lack of any truly effective action against this injustice.  For more information, visit http://www.itsagirlmovie.com .  Admission is FREE - instead please bring a non-perishable food item for the Campus Food Bank. 

On Wednesday, March 6 at 8:00 pm in the Cassio Rooms in MacEwan Hall at the University of Calgary, the Social Work Students’ Association invite you to an evening with Dr. Raju Hajela, a Calgary addiction specialist and physician.  Currently, Dr. Hajela is the president and Medical Director at Health Upwardly Mobile, Inc. (HUM), a health and wellness company offering services to clients and prepare them for residential treatment for drug addiction;  gambling addiction; alcohol rehab;  internet, video gaming, and media addiction; sex and relationships; and food addiction treatment.  According to the HUM website, Dr. Hajela has taught at the University of Toronto, Queen’s University and the University of Calgary. He has received numerous honours and awards for his leadership and community work.  Dr. Hajela will spend the evening sharing with us his knowledge and experience with addiction.  There will be an opportunity for questions and dialogue after the presentation.  Admission is FREE – instead please bring a non-perishable food item for the Campus Food Bank.

Career and Employment Tip
by Angela Judge,
Career Specialist, Education and Social Work, Career Services

I receive a lot of questions from students regarding cover letters.  I have found in over 8 years of practice is that when employers request cover letters as part of your application package, they allow you to highlight not only your relevant skills and experience in more detail than you can on your resume, but also to share your voice and how you put your values into practice.  An effective cover letter is one page in length (unless otherwise specified) and allows you to tell the reader why you are writing them, how you fit within and will contribute to their organization and why you want to work for them. Students can view all of our career development resources via the Career Services website: http://www.ucalgary.ca/careers/studentsandalumni

Meet your SWSA Representative of the Month...
Introducing: Jennifer Broughton

1. What route did you take to becoming a University of Calgary Social
Work Student?   Where are you now in your studies?

Right after high school, I went to the University of Alberta to study Global and Developmental Studies. After realizing this program was not for me, I transferred to the Red Deer College Social Work Diploma program, which then led me into the University of Calgary Bachelor of Social Work Degree program. I am currently in my 3rd year of the program. 
2. Why did you decide to join the Social Work Students' Association?
I decided to join SWSA to meet people from my program and faculty, and be apart of planning fun, interesting and engaging events on campus.
3. What role do you play on SWSA?
I am a member of the social committee, which is responsible for planning events on campus, or engaging with others that are interesting in putting an event together.
4. What has been your favourite part of belonging to SWSA so far?
My favorite part has probably been the opportunities to meet some of my peers that I might not of otherwise through classes. I think we have grown together over the year to form a cohesive club, and I look forward to working with everyone more in the future!
5. What event are you looking forward to most this year?
We have worked very hard to put on some amazing events during social work week which I am very excited about. I think both the documentary and the speaker will have some very interesting information to share, and I look forward to see how we can bring awareness and make change!

Interested in having a Public Interest Research Group on your Calgary campus?
Great things a PIRG
on your campus could bring:
• funding for your project/ideas
• training opportunities
• skill-building workshops
• low cost photocopy/telephone/fax usage,
• low-cost meeting spaces
• access to AV equipment
• national networking opportuni­ties and more
The CPIRG (Calgary Public Interest Research Group) is in the works and is looking to meet progressively minded students at both the University of Calgary and Mount Royal University who interested in seeing a PIRG on their campus.  Email ashley.i.fairall@gmail.com with any PIRG related questions or check out www.apirg.org

What’s Up in Social Work?

Thank you to Liza Lorenzetti and all the faculty who donated money to the student food bank. $75 was raised and donated.
Thank-you also to Catherine Pearl’s SOWK 355 class for their generous food and monetary donations made to the food bank before the winter break!
The red food collection bin will be outside the SWSA office (PF 4253) for the entire winter semester if you would like to make a donation.  SWSA will be checking the bin and dropping donations off regularly at the student food bank.

Career and Employment Tip
By Angela Judge, Career Specialist, Faculty of Social Work, University of Calgary

A professional resume is a critical tool for your job search.  Sitting down to write a resume is a big task.  I find it useful to create a comprehensive or master resume which includes all of your education and experience.  This allows you to respond quickly when you hear about a position through your network or online. You can quickly scan your experience and pull out two pages that are most relevant to the organization based on their job advertisement. This strategy ensures you have a well written, comprehensive and targeted resume every time.

Your SWSA Representative of the Month:
Jenn Beaulieau

1. What route did you take to becoming a University of Calgary Social Work Student?   Where are you now in your studies?
I came to the Social Work program as a University Transfer student, from St. Thomas University in Fredericton, New Brunswick. I am currently in my 3rd year of my studies and can't wait for practicum in the fall!!
2. Why did you decide to join the Social Work Students' Association?

I decided to join SWSA to become more connected with my classmates and to officially become part of a "club" as I had never been a part of one before.
3. What role do you play on SWSA?
I am a co-chair of SWSA and oversee both the media committee and engagement committee and I also I sit on the BSW Committee meetings.
4. What has been your favourite part of belonging to SWSA so far?
My favorite part of belonging to SWSA so far, is that I feel like I have not only gotten to know my classmates very well, but a lot of faculty members as well.

5. What event are you looking forward to most this year?
I am looking forward to Social Work week!! We have a great speaker lined up!! Stay tuned for more details!!!

What’s Up in Social Work?

The Social Work Students' Association Volunteered for the Campus Food bank on November 14, 15, and 16, collecting food and monetary donations around campus.

Fundraising for the United Way continued on November 23, 2012 with the Mini Golf Tournament and Barbeque in the Professional Faculties building.

A total of $1212.18 was raised by the Faculty for the United way from the Change Challenge held in October and the Mini Golf Tournament in November.

Also, in SWSA news:
SWSA will be accepting new members in the new year if you are interested in being involved.  Please email swsa.calgary@gmail.com for more information.
Upcoming Training Opportunity:

Little Warriors delivers the Stewards of Children child sexual abuse prevention program. This program is a child sexual abuse prevention training program that educates adults how to help prevent, recognize, and react responsibly to child sexual abuse, and motivates them to take action. The Stewards of Children program is designed for any parent or responsible adult that works with children and youth.
For every adult who takes the Stewards of Children training they have the potential to help protect 10 children from becoming victims of this
 horrific crime.  The program includes:
• An interactive workbook for each participant containing the full program curriculum.
• An accompanying 1 ¼ hour DVD integrating segments of sexual abuse survivors relating their stories of violation and healing, with segments from the author of the curriculum and from professionals who interface daily with the problem of sexual abuse.
• An opportunity for discussion about important issues in sexual abuse prevention and the relevance of these issues within organizations that serve children and adolescents.

This program has been accredited by the ACSW for 3 Category A Credits.  You will receive a certificate of attendance and interactive workbook.

For more information, please email sesherid@ucalgary.ca.  A sign-up sheet for this training will be sent around in classes during the first week of December.  Please keep an eye out if you are interested!

Career and Employment Tip by Angela Judge

An effective job search consists of managing the balance between online applications and ensuring that you are networking and connecting to people.  Networking can provide information about hidden job opportunities as they happen, help you to learn more about the organization for the interview and to build and enhance your professional relationships.  Check out this article: 4 Effective Networking Tips for Students and Recent Grads by Leah Ruehlicke through this link:

Interview with the Faculty

The following is an interview with Hieu Van Ngo, an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Social work.

1. What path did you take to becoming a Social Worker?
My experience as a refugee was transformative. In the refugee camp, I learned firsthand the meaning of social justice, and was inspired by many individuals who had dedicated their lives to help others. As soon as I settled down in Canada, I got involved in various volunteer activities in the community. In making my career decision, I took time to reflect on my life experiences, my passion and my hope to make practical, meaningful contributions to build a better world. Social work has suited my life philosophy of practical idealism.

2. Where did you get your education?
I received my formal education both in Vietnam and in Canada.  I had my social work training in the Faculty of Social Work, University of Calgary.  In addition, I was privileged to receive informal training and mentorship from many community members over the years.

3. How long have you worked at the University of Calgary?
I joined the Faculty of Social Work, University of Calgary, as an assistant professor in January 2012. Prior to my appointment, I had taught various undergraduate and graduate courses in the faculty between 2004 and 2010.

4. What are you most proud of (career wise, or anything else)?
I am proud of the fact that I arrived in Canada as a Vietnamese, and have over time transformed into a Vietnamese-Canadian and a global citizen. I am also proud that some of the community members whom I have mentored have stepped up as leaders and made contributions in the community.

5. What do you hope to achieve in the next year?
I am committed to work with students, faculty members and community partners to promote the best social work learning experience for all students. I intend to work with community partners to do action research that enhances theoretical and practical knowledge to prevent criminal youth gangs. I am also expanding my work internationally.  This spring, I will head to Vietnam to conduct a study on the emergence of the non-profit sector and its role in building civil society.

6. What is your favourite place to visit?
I spent two summers in Port Renfrew, BC. As fogs constantly moved across the landscape throughout the day, nature presented an awe-inspiring live painting. I also enjoyed driving across Cuba during my many visits. It was good not to see the signs of McDonald’s or Walmart, and not to know what awaited me around the bend.

7. What is your favourite indulgence?
A visit to a locally owned coffee shop on a winter night and listening to local musicians.

8.  What is something about you that others may be surprised to find out (a random fact!)?
I shouldn’t reveal any surprises until they drop by my office for a chatJ!

9. What advice do you have for future Social Workers?
Be a tree that grows.

SWSA has been working hard to get things running this semester, and we are excited to try out this new online format of the newsletter.  Please let us know what you think - send your feedback to media.swsa@gmail.com. 
We would also love your input on our future editions - we would like to publish your writing, recipes, events, and anything else important to you, so send it all to us to see it published here!

Let us introduce you to our hard-working SWSA committees:

Social Committee
Hello fellow students! We are the Social Committee! Our members include: Lauren Miholic, Christina Burrows, Jennifer Broughton, Kristen Immel, Brooklyn Rogers, and Mike Davies.  It is our role, as part of the Social Work Student Association, to plan events throughout the school year. Our events will range from holiday to social justice themes. Stay tuned into the SWSA newsletter to find out about upcoming events.

The External Committee
The External Committee oversees SWSA relations with bodies that are not located on campus. The members of this committee are Kasey Lebans, Jamie Zarn, Allie Caputo, Kim Carlin and Laura Coatsworth!  Our major work comes through building relationships between SWSA and the community, as well as offering professional development opportunities for students.  We are currently working on teaming with community agencies to be an additional support over the holiday season, and to build our networking circles. Any suggestions are welcomed!

The Finance Committee
Made up of Julie Vigneux, Megan Asselin, and Mike Davies, the Finance Committee is responsible for one of the most important parts of SWSA: the money. As future social workers, the previous statement must be untrue and based on the finance committee's humor because we know that money isn't what keeps us in this profession.  The truth is that the financial committee manages the financial assets, applies for necessary funding and participates in fundraising events to help sustain SWSA. Most importantly, this committee cares about being involved in SWSA because we of the relationships we build amongst the students, faculty and our community.

Engagement Committee
The SWSA Engagement Committee members are Kate Heney (MSW Program), Sharron Sherridan (BSW), Alisha Mohammed (BSW), and Mike Davies (BSW).  The primary role of the Engagement Committee is to create student involvement, participation and awareness in SWSA events, faculty events, and events or causes in the community and social justice initiatives. We do this by mass emailing and/or visiting classrooms and speaking directly to students.  We would also like to connect with students individually and as classes (for example, Master's students and Bachelor's students) to create a sense of community within the faculty.

The Overseers Committee
The Overseers Committee is made up of Erin Bronskill, Zakhiyya Murji, Allie Caputo and Mike Davies.  This purpose of this committee is to oversee the general operations of SWSA and to liaise between all committees. Essentially, this is the leadership committee.

Media Committee
And last but not least - the Media Committee, made up of Robyn Romano, Christina Burrows, and Erin Bronskill, takes care of sharing all of the important information from all of these committees with you!  Check us out on Facebook, Twitter and on this website for all of the latest news (link to both at the top of the website)!

What’s Up in Social Work?

On October 16, 2012, social work students and faculty members participated in the United Way Change Challenge. 
Together they raised almost $1000 in one hour for the United Way! 

Fundraising for the United Way will continue on November 23 with the Mini Golf Tournament and Barbeque being held at the Professional Faculties building.
Dean Jackie Sieppert will be manning the barbeque from 2:00 pm until 3:00 pm that day, so come get some lunch and try out a round of golf! 

Career and Employment Tip
By Angela Judge, Career and Specialist, Faculty of Social Work, University of Calgary

Social media can be an effective job search and networking tool.  Job seekers may find information about professionals who have their dream job, company information to help prepare for an interview and job advertisements.  Employers are also utilizing social media to search for candidates and to brand their organization. Social media provides an online opportunity to grow and expand your network. 
Click here for some social media tips: