7 Questions with Sam B.

What college did you graduate from, and what was your major?
I graduated from the University of Maine in Orono with a Bachelor’s in Social Work.

What helped you decide on your major?
What helped me decide on my major was being part of the Big Brother Big Sister program in high school and seeing the positive impact the program had on my little sister.

What was your favorite class in college, and why?
My favorite class was probably my field placement course during my senior year in the social work program. This was a class where I got to go out into the field and work in an area of my interest and put my skills to use in a real practice setting. This class also contained a seminar where we met weekly and I got to hear from my classmates what their experiences in their placements was like and I really enjoyed that.

Are you working in the same field as your major?
I am currently in the Master’s of Social Work program at UMaine and I am a teaching assistant to a social work professor, so yes I would say that is like working in the field. I grade undergraduate student’s homework, supervise them, and assist the professor in creating assignments and advising some of the students. I also have a part time job at a women’s health center that definitely utilizes social work skills.

Were there things you felt unprepared for when you went to college?
I actually felt very prepared for college, as much as I could be anyway. I knew what I wanted to study, how to access help from RAs or my department, and what my financial situation would be. I think what I felt most unprepared for was just the adjustment to college life and living on my own. I felt academically prepared for college level work, but socially and emotionally there was an adjustment period. My METS advisor strongly recommended remaining on campus during the first few weekends to adjust instead of going home if I felt homesick or out of place. I think that was really helpful and made the adjustment period much easier.

How do you feel METS helped you prepare for college?
METS was definitely a major factor in preparing me for college. Just learning about financial aid and what the different types of loans mean was a huge help! Also I found it beneficial to learn how to manage my debt during and after college. But I think what was most valuable was the emotional support I received during my stressful senior year and how to prepare for the transition. I came to realize I would always have support from my METS advisor even while I would be away at college.

What advice would you give to METS students?
I would definitely tell current METS students to never be afraid to ask questions or ask for help, ever. The college process can be stressful and confusing, but METS advisors really are the experts and are always there to come to the rescue. Also I would say to take advantage of this great program, you’ll be happy later on that you learned so much and were so prepared.