Trent University Durham GTA Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) graduate Shanique Pearson has big plans following graduation – to work full-time in an addiction rehabilitation centre. Ms. Pearson says her education and support from experienced professors provided essential theoretical knowledge and hands-on experience that make her feel prepared for a professional position.
“Incoming BSW students will encounter professors who have years of wisdom and experience, with a passion to advocate for underprivileged and vulnerable populations,” Ms. Pearson says. During her fourth-year practicum, she worked at the Refuge Youth Outreach Centre, a drop-in facility for homeless youth in downtown Oshawa.
“Each day I had the privilege to sit across from youth and listen to their stories of bravery and resilience, as well as sadness and loss,” said Ms. Pearson. “I became a part of the community and built meaningful connections.”
At Trent Durham, she participated in the #MyDefinition campaign that spreads mental health awareness at universities across Canada. She was also the founder and president of the Trent African, Black, and Caribbean Students Club, a group that increases representation of Afro-Caribbean culture in Durham Region and provides students of colour with a safe space to discuss social and political issues pertaining to racism and inequality. Whitby MP Celina Caesar-Chavannes honoured the group with a congratulatory certificate.
Thanks to high marks, Ms. Pearson received two Trent University National Renewable Entrance Scholarships, made repeated appearances on the Dean's Honour Roll, and earned a spot on the President's Honour Roll this spring.