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Excellence in the Helping Profession

Mon May 23, 2016 at 05:20 PM

Desirae Breeden (left) and Amber Cooper (right), May 2016 MBC, BSW graduates

Desirae Breeden (left) and Amber Cooper (right), May 2016 MBC, BSW graduates

Two former Blue Ridge Community College students, Desirae Breeden and Amber Cooper, received the Mary Ellen Richmond Outstanding Field Award for seniors in Mary Baldwin College’s Bachelor of Social Work program. Both were nominated by their supervisors for their accomplishments in the Field Instruction part of their coursework.

Three Questions for Desirae

Describe your educational experiences at Blue Ridge.

I started my journey at BRCC in May 2005, my senior year of high school. I worked full time and attended BRCC part time. The flexibility that BRCC offered and the array of classes helped me stay motivated and not get discouraged. BRCC was such a wonderful experience and opportunity to experience higher education. All of the classes prepared me for college-level work and made me a master of juggling multiple duties.

Why do you want to pursue a career in social work?

My field placement was with the Augusta County Adult Services Unit with the Department of Social Services located in Waynesboro. My supervisor nominated me because she was impressed with my determination, integrity, values, professionalism, and interpersonal skills. I have always known that I wanted to work with people in some aspect. In high school I earned my certified nurse’s aide (CNA) license through Valley Vocational Technical Center, and I have worked at a local nursing home for many years. I thought for the longest time that I wanted to be a nurse, but …realized that I wanted more and that I wanted to help people in a different way than in nursing. My BRCC/MBC advisor opened my eyes to the idea of social work; I was hooked.

What are your immediate career plans?

My immediate career plan is to simply obtain a job in the field of social work. My passion is in higher education, job placement, and educating the community on important issues. I want to start utilizing my acquired degree, sharpen my skills, and serve my community.