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Providing Students with the Opportunity to Learn through Experience

As we enter into October, our current group of co-op and placement students have settled into their roles and already gained valuable experience in their fields of choice. We are a proud supporter of student learning opportunities, and partner with numerous colleges and universities in the Toronto area to give students the ability to learn and grow in the healthcare field.

Hear from our previous students about the skills and lessons they have learned throughout their time at Circle of Care.

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“I really enjoyed my experience completing my PSW placement at Circle of Care’s Adult Day Program. The program staff were welcoming, knowledgeable and very passionate about what they do. The program’s activities are tailored to meet each client’s unique needs and provide stimulation and a renewed sense of independence for the clients. During my placement, I applied the skills and knowledge I learned through my PSW program at George Brown College and ensured that the clients were safe, respected, and treated with dignity.”

-Natalie Thompson, PSW Student Placement

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“I’ve been fortunate to have been a summer student at Circle of Care for multiple summers working within various departments- from administration to client services. I completed my undergraduate degree in English and Psychology Neuroscience and Behaviour at McMaster and I will be starting teachers’ college this upcoming September. My experience at Circle of Care has allowed me to enhance my social interaction skills at a professional level and understand how to communicate with special populations. This is particularly important in reference to my future as a teacher. Understanding individual needs on a case-by-case basis and providing both empathy and accommodations to various special clients, has given me the training I will need when working with students of varying academic abilities and goals. My role here at Circle of Care has taught me how to be a team member and a leader, which I will take with me in my all future endeavours.”

– Isabella LaMantia, Service Coordinator Student

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“I’ve been a summer student at Circle of Care for the past four summers and I appreciate the opportunities Circle of Care has given to me. I am about to enter my second year at Humber College, studying Business Administration- Accounting. I’ve worked in two different departments at Circle of Care: Volunteer Resources and Finance. Both departments have taught me a lot. I was really excited to be able to apply my knowledge from school when I worked in the Finance department and assisted with client payments. I’ve also been able to strengthen my Excel skills through the various tasks and projects I’ve worked on. And it’s been really enjoyable to come back year after year and strengthen my working relationships with the people here at Circle of Care.”

-Rayshawn Lewis, Volunteer Resources Summer Student

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“Circle of Care gave me many opportunities in my placement as a 1st year Masters of Social Work student that I wouldn’t have had anywhere else. The Social Work team was very supportive and treated me as a part of the unit. My supervisor even created a unique workshop to help me become more familiar with resources in the community. I was encouraged to independently complete home visits to observe and assess clients’ situations. I gained skills to create a therapeutic alliance with my clients. My placement experience led me directly to my role as a Case Manager. When I applied for this job, my previous supervisor recommended that I would be a good fit for the position. Every day, I use my Social Work training as well as professional experience from my placements to provide client-centred care and support my clients to live independently.”

-Shmuel Estreicher, Case Manager, Holocaust Survivor Services

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“During my summer placement, I worked alongside the Holocaust Survivor Program team. I supported Holocaust Survivors by assisting in the department’s daily administrative operations. The role has given me the opportunity to sharpen my problem-solving and organizational skills and allowed me to better understand the specific health needs of specialized populations. I have had the privilege to work under the guidance of a caring team who has supported me in my growth and created a compassionate environment throughout my placement. My knowledge of the healthcare system, as a student in Health Studies and Bioethics at the University of Toronto, has allowed me to recognize the ways in which personalized healthcare is essential to improving individual health outcomes. Circle of Care’s emphasis on person-centred community care has highlighted for me the importance of the client’s voice when providing care. Throughout my experience at Circle of Care, I felt as though the contributions I have made while working with the department were impactful to the broader community. It’s really been a fulfilling experience to help improve our clients’ quality of life by giving them with the ability to age in the environment where they feel most secure: their own homes.”

-Charlotte Pape, Holocaust Admin Student

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“I started a student placement at Circle of Care while I was completing my undergraduate studies in Family and Community Social Services. I had the opportunity to apply and hone my skills in research and academic writing when conducting community analyses, developing staff and client surveys, and investigating guidelines for best practice. I’ve also written grant applications and abstract submissions. Learning the agency’s practices, procedures, standards and terminology has proven valuable in my studies, and I anticipate this knowledge will be especially helpful in embarking on a career in the health care sector. Now enrolled in a Masters of Social Work program, I am confident that my experience at Circle of Care has contributed greatly to my practical education and has provided extensive hands-on experience in working in home and community care.”

-Neve Taylor, Community Relations Coordinator

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“I started my Bachelor of Social Work placement at Circle of Care in September 2014. My field instructor, Anna, was really great. She and the rest of the social work team were very supportive and caring. They helped me to take the in-class concepts I had learned and apply them to real situations. By the end of my placement in April 2015, I felt like I was meant to stay at Circle of Care. After I finished my degree, I was hired! I first worked in Information & Referral, before transitioning back into social work after a position opened.”

-Maria Valle Perez, Social Worker