Each of our amazing board members chose the profession of social work for a reason and we would like to share their stories with you. Stay tuned for a post about each of the social workers who represent YOU on the NASW-NC Board.
Jessica Jurek, MSW, LCSWA
Central District Representative (2013-2015)
My social work journey began when I wanted to be a teacher when I was 7. Everything from old teacher’s manuals, to mini chalkboards, I was sure that this was my destiny. When I got to high school and showed talent in mathematics, school professionals soon started encouraging me to choose a different career, potentially in math or finance. I was bombarded with comments about what I “should” do, reiterated by my loving and full-of-good-intentions father. Finance was then my chosen path as I graduated high school.
Attending the University of Michigan, a liberal arts university, was my saving grace from the “shoulds” of my high school days. Class by class, experience by experience, I slowly cancelled out the prospects of being an accountant, a politician, an economist, an anthropologist, and the list goes on. What I realized after an alternative spring break trip my sophomore year of college, was that I needed to stop following the “should” in my head, and start following the passion in my heart. The spring break trip reminded me of my helping nature, and my desire to inspire those that face difficult challenges daily.
My junior year of college I started getting involved in health advocacy groups, mental health and body image organizations, and reignited my helping spirit. As I finished college with a sociology degree, I was never more proud of myself. I entered my MSW program in the fall of that same year and continued my academic journey in learning the beginnings of the right tools and skills to help me give to others.
With my MSW and LCSWA in hand, I’m more than excited to continue forging forward on this journey into the social work profession.