As a veteran of the United States Army, I am passionate about the needs and specialized care of our veterans, who I see as my extended family. To make my maximum contribution to this population, to which our entire country will always have a particular debt, I hope to earn my MSW Degree with a focus on Medical Social Work in general and the issues faced by veterans in particular. I am especially concerned with the problems of suicide and PTSD and the links between the two. At the center of my efforts and focus will be the strategies that have been found most effective and show exceptional promise for the future in helping veterans to learn to deal successfully with their mental health issues, most of all, in the context of their families, as husbands and fathers as well as members of the community.
I have served professionally as a respiratory therapist for 13 years after earning my first degree. Here at my day job, I have learned the most about medicine, especially everything related to breathing. This will help me excel and prove an asset as a medical social worker. From August 2013 until July 2020, I served at XXXX Hospital in Phoenix, AZ. I provided critical care therapy, assessment, and treatment and monitored hospital patients with cardiopulmonary issues. I learned how to conduct various diagnostic and therapeutic procedures and provide education and referral to additional resources for patients, family members, and my colleagues on the patient care team. As an active member of the Hospital Respiratory Consult Service, we provided specialized assessment and treatment determination. My responsibilities included critical care, bronchoscopy assistants, emergency room, code team, and ECGs - assessing data reflective of the patient's status and appropriately interpreting information relative to the patient's condition.
I would earn my BS and MA Degrees while a United States Army Reserve member based in Scottsdale, AZ (October 2011- November 2017). I was trained to serve as a paralegal specialist for the military police command, providing paralegal support to unit commanders and the Office of the Staff Judge Advocate. I produced legal documents in court-martial, nonjudicial punishments, and other military justice matters, as well as line of duty determinations, separation board proceedings, and other administrative law matters. This experience was formative to my dedication to the goal of helping veterans. It will also be beneficial as a social worker dealing with family issues since I am experienced as a professional in the family law arena, dealing with matters of family assistance, powers of attorney, wills, and separation decrees, etc.
The medical side of my education thus far was enhanced by earning my BS in Health Science and Advanced Patient Care at Grand Canyon University. My unique, permanent dedication to family and advocating for families was also greatly enhanced by earning the MED Degree in Elementary Education (2011 – 2014). This will prove to be of benefit in my work with families as a Medical Social Worker. Looking back at my record, I am pleased that I have extensive legal and medical experience since both will serve me well as an MSW professional dealing daily with the legal and medical issues of families.
Volunteer work is also close to my heart, and I look forward to always staying engaged. I have volunteered for the International Rescue Committee supporting new refugees to the US. I would take people to their doctor’s appointments and help them understand what was happening and how US health care works. My Jewish grandparents were refugees to this country after fleeing persecution in Hungary in the 1940s. This reinforces my desire to provide exceptional support to refugees beyond our borders.
My central professional goal is to be a medical social worker at the VA hospital supporting veterans. I think my veteran experience and extensive experience in health care make me a suitable candidate for medical social work. I’m drawn to positions of service, and my life is enriched by positively impacting the lives of others.
About five years ago, I had a patient, an Army veteran in his 40s, who was recently diagnosed with ALS. I saw this patient often and observed how he increasingly became debilitated by his condition, scared, and withdrawn. This patient had little family support and resisted moving to an assisted living facility. I continued to see the patient and provide respiratory care services, and I reported my observations and concerns to the physician in charge of his care. Given our similar experiences in the Army, I felt a genuine camaraderie with this patient, and I was sad that I could not provide more support. At this time, I set my sights on becoming a social worker. As I was preparing to become a social worker, I thought about this patient frequently. With the proper training and experience, I could help people like him navigate a devastating diagnosis better, finding out what they needed to make their lives more palatable and meaningful.
I feel strongly that our critically ill veterans should not feel alone when navigating a health care or social service system that’s utterly foreign to them. When people arrive at a place where they feel helpless and don't know what to do, I want to be the person that helps them to optimally navigate their circumstances. As a social worker, I look forward to responding to the psychosocial needs of individuals and families in my community. I also hope to contribute to forming partnerships between community organizations to care for the needs of individuals, particularly those in marginalized communities.
The location of XXU will allow me to devote maximum time to my studies. I appreciate XXU's support of veteran students with the XXXX Veterans Center. It would be a special honor to take advantage of the learning opportunity represented by this center. Most important is your program's sheer excellence, as reflected in its national ranking.
My extensive experience in caring for a broad diversity of patients, each with unique physical or medical challenges, has enabled me to become familiar with the medical and social needs of the diverse people and groups I look forward to serving. I could not be more passionate about public service and improving the lives and experiences of people in my community, driven by the positive impact I can have on the lives of others. Primarily concerned with social and emotional issues impacting veterans, refugees, and immigrants, I am most interested in medical social work because of my familiarity with healthcare environments and my desire to help patients and family members to navigate healthcare systems by accessing the resources they need
I was born in Texas and spent my childhood between Texas and Missouri. I come from a working-class family, the first to attend and graduate from college. I speak intermediate Hungarian and conversational Hebrew. I write better in Hungarian than I do in Hebrew.
I have traveled extensively as a tourist, which has enhanced my understanding of culture and cultural cultures. Traveling to my ancestral homeland of Hungary has given me a deeper understanding of my cultural origins. In the Army, I was deployed to Qatar, Afghanistan, and Cuba, where the people I met will forever be etched upon my mind.
I thank you for considering my application to Social Work at XXU.