The principle behind the volunteer experience was to establish a sense of progress and self-fulfillment. I was fortunate to participate in a medical mission project of the Red Cross where I was able to apply the theoretical learning I have learned from the classroom discussions that we had prior to the experience. It was a good way of ensuring that we can apply what we have learned inside the classroom. Prior to the experience, I was having doubts that I could be an effective social worker.
In another discussion made by the person behind the theory of experiential learning Carl Rogers, he substantiated my attitude towards feeling that the theoretical knowledge I acquired from the classrooms were still insufficient. Rogers’ theory insists that cognitive education should not be the focus of learning (Rowan). He believes that cognitive education defies the motivation and enthusiasm of learners towards the process of acquiring knowledge. He joins Maslow in saying that learning should be geared towards the achievement of personal growth and development.
I do not question my instructors’ skills in teaching because they have done a very good job making me understand the principles, theories and concepts behind the relevance of my profession choice. I may not have fully mastered the theories in rote details, but I have perfectly understood what they were about and how it was supposed to be implemented.
As Maslow said, an experiential learner will encounter the feeling that they are merging with the subject—feeling how they feel, experiencing what they experience and imbibing what they imbibe, while at the same time being in a new surrounding I was receptive of what is being fed to my senses (Rogers, Lyon and Tausch). I became uncritical not being conscious or objective about things.
The immersion has been particularly helpful. Of course at first I felt conscious. Although the formal evaluation that would constitute to being graded has been removed, that did not make the experience any lighter than it is inside the classroom. However, I have noticed other significant difference from the tradition classroom experience with the immersion activity or the experiential learning process. One significant difference I have noticed was how time does not seem to play a very big part during the whole learning process. In the tradition classroom, setup time is a huge factor. I noticed that usually since classes are restricted by a time schedule, there has not been enough time to focus on one topic and concentrate of covering everything that needs to be covered. During the immersion, time seems to flow freely but with substantial learning being inculcated and applied. That makes a difference in because in a smaller fraction of the time; a lot can be learned because the learning is both extrinsic and intrinsic.
Like I have said, we have interviews and in an activity in one of my classes our instructor asked us to interview a social worker and ask him or her about what we wanted to know about the job that they do. For example, in my interviewee’s response the question whether being a social worker is a rewarding profession, not in terms of compensation, the answer I got was negatively stated. The interviewee said that it was disappointing most of the time and very frustrating. When I asked why, the answer I was given was that the uncertainties of things and the hopelessness of most of the situations make everything less fulfilling.
Learning from experience makes one prepared on what to expect when they come into the actual work setting. This type of teaching techniques is best in courses that require a lot of hands-on activities, interaction and public relations. Social work being a profession that has all the three mentioned factors necessarily needs to incorporate learning by experience or immersions into its curriculum.
As I contemplate on my career path, I take into account my educational expertise in which I have a major in Emergency Medical Service. In addition, I am also skilled in airway management, intravenous therapy, intravenous bolus medications, and intra osseous access, application of spinal and extremities immobilization, bleeding control operation, shock management, patient assessment, analysis and interpretation of EKG/ECG rhythms and initiation of oxygen and medical gas therapy. Given both my educational background and my professional skills and expertise I was able to participate actively in the cause of the organization.
First is obtaining a teaching position at the department of Emergency Management and Care. Aside from saving lives and helping people get the need medical attention in cases of medical emergencies, my second passion is teaching. I would want to help in training future paramedics who can be effective in the profession particularly in saving people’s lives. In addition, I believe that it would also contribute that I do not get agitated. I do not panic even in the most extreme cases. I try to maintain my composure that is good especially in trying to process information.
Finally, I realize I could also become a counselor in public health centers particularly in trying to get the public informed on how to react during medical emergencies. I could also aid in trying to provide trainings on first aid in different medical situations so as to prevent any further damages or complications on the part of the patient. I am the best candidate for this position because my motivation is to get as many people to participate in giving first aid to help save lives.
Rogers, C., Lyon, H. J., & Tausch, R. (2013). On Becoming an Effective Teacher - Person-centered teaching, psychology, philosophy, and dialogues with Carl R. Rogers and Harold Lyon. London: Routledge.
Rowan, J. (2001). Ordinary Ecstasy: The Dialectics of Humanistic Psychology, 3/E. Brunner: Routledge.
Schneider, K. (2008). Existential-integrative Psychotherapy: Guideposts to the Core of Practice. New York: Routledge.