On a dismal fall day, I headed to an event, Fall Member Open House, hosted by The Greater Washington Society for Clinical Social Work (GWSCSW). Some readers may not know that I am a license social worker and I very interested in eventually having a private practice in the future, so this event was of particular interest to me. The event was held at one of the member’s home in a quaint neighborhood in Annandale.
When I entered the home, Melinda Salzman, a Member of the Board, quickly greeted me. Melinda and I had corresponded a couple times via email, and she was very excited to meet me and to tell me about the organization. GWSCSW was established in 1975 to promote and advance specialization of clinical practice within the social work profession. It is an organization of graduate clinical social workers who practice in a variety of settings including mental health clinics, family agencies, psychiatric hospitals, medical facilities and private practice in the Metropolitan Washington area. The society’s mission is to promote the highest standards of clinical social work practice, and the highest educational and training standards as well; to advance and disseminate clinical social work knowledge; to educate the public about clinical social work; to pursue political/legislative goals protecting the professional interests of clinical social workers; and to work with other health care professionals on issues of common concern such as treatment of mental and emotional disorders.
The potential members at the open house ranged from graduate social workers to clinicians in the field. It was refreshing for me to hear about the professional experience and professional goals of a room full of new and experienced social workers. In addition to discussing social work and related issues, it was a social atmosphere and people were discussing other topics such as: their hobbies, personal interests, and their families. I had a chance to mingle with a handful of individuals who participated in an informal circle discussion, and everyone took a few minutes to make introductions and express their interests in the field of social worker. Not only was the company refreshing, but the foods and beverages provided were quite scrumptious.
Towards the conclusion of the event we had a chance to meet more attendees. I made sure I met the President of the Board, Susan Post. She was a pleasure to speak with and was very eager to learn about my interests in the field. Even though she had to attend another engagement, she spent time speaking with me and posing for a picture. For any reader who is a social worker or is interested in the field, I would highly recommend this organization.