Jan – Professional Practice Educator

Name: Jan

Job role: Professional Practice Educator 

Year qualified (as SW): 1989

Why did you become a social worker?

I was working as a Nursery Nurse at Hillfields Nursery, Coventry and my manager suggested that I should go into teaching or social work. Whilst I liked the idea of the long school holidays, I wasn’t keen on standing in front of a class of 30 pupils!  I also felt that my political and ethical views lent me towards social work more. I had led a project for parents at the nursery and loved it, seeing them grow in confidence around managing as a parent and the benefits this had for their children was a huge incentive for me to move into children and families social work.

Three tips for our ASYEs:

  1. Look after yourself in practice… you have to put your own oxygen mask on first if you want to be of help to others.
  2. Remember, you can’t make someone else change, they have to want to do it for themselves… you can help them think about what benefits changing could bring them, build their capacity to change, give them some ideas/resources and sometimes a supporting hand, but in the end, it’s in their gift.
  3. Keep your sense of humour, remain respectful but you have to be able to release the pressure by not taking everything too seriously – the ability to laugh at yourself is key in this job!