University of Connecticut University of UC Title Fallback Connecticut

Student Profiles: Haynes on Community Organization

Jasmin Haynes, MSW student with a concentration in Community OrganizationJasmin Haynes, a UConn MSW student with a concentration in Community Organization, chose the UConn School of Social Work due to her belief that the school’s MSW program would provide her with the knowledge and skills necessary to take her organization to the next level.

Bachelor’s Degree: Michigan State University, BS in Urban and Regional Planning

I chose to attend UConn because of the method-based curriculum. As the co-founder of a 501(c)(3) non-profit in Detroit, MI, Builders of Promise, I was intrinsically involved in community organizing. However, I had no formal training in best practices for the work I was doing, and I believed UConn’s MSW program would provide me with the knowledge and skills necessary to take my organization to the next level.

During my first year, the MSW program pushed me to be both introspective and extrospective—analyzing self and the world around me. Through course work and field experience, I began to understand the intersectionality of micro and macro-level social work. Though it is a method-based curriculum, the program places an emphasis on the importance of a multi-tiered approach to problem solving through the foundational courses. I found that Micro-, mezzo-, and macro-level work must be done to adequately service marginalized populations.

This year I am serving as co-chair of the Graduate Student Organization (GSO) and student representative to the Education Review Committee. Through these positions, I am looking to increase awareness of pressing issues within our communities and increase cultural humility. I look forward to continued work with the SSW community.

My advice for future students is to “get comfortable being uncomfortable”. Do not settle for mediocrity. Push yourself beyond your known limits. Get involved with GSO and network. Take advantage of all opportunities that arise. Use this time to find your voice within social work and then employ it to change the world. Push the moral arc of the universe further towards justice. Finally, enjoy this journey!