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William A Zeanbo

AHS-8100 Guided Practicum


E-portfolio

Chapter 1-Getting Started

Personal Statement

At the starting of my internship, I was feeling uncertain, apprehensive, and anxious about the
entire 15 weeks period. I was concerned about what I was going to meet, how my site
supervisor will relate to me and how others in the department will interact with me considering
my new face. Moreover, I felt intimidated and nervous to ask too many questions because I
didnt want to admit that I didnt understand or that I needed extra help with something.
Fortunately, I got over that fear quickly because asking questions is the only way to learn what
you are really supposed to be doing. I found that my site supervisor and fellow staff members
appreciated it more if I asked too many questions to make sure I really understood what I was
doing and that I did it correctly. My primary learning interests and needs are that materials
learned from the internship will be applied in real life. Besides, I want to learn from the
internship exactly all the required skills and tasks needed to have a career in my field.
Additionally, I needed a placement agency that the atmosphere was conducive for learning. My
strength is that I'm a hard worker. My weakness is that I get stressed when I miss a deadline
because someone else made a mistake. I am excited about getting that practical experience that I
needed as a human services professional. I feel that quality internships are essential to
developing key skills that I can't get in a classroom. Skills such as multitasking, communicating,
learning to deal with diversity, and dealing with deadlines are different when you are working for
someone else, not yourself like you do in college. Pleasing everyone is most challenging. There
are people in this world that are simply difficult. I have learned that stressing over little things
will not get me anywhere. I have learned to work well as a team and that without my
counterparts the work would not get done.

Chapter 2-Getting Acquainted


The fact that my internship doesnt require a direct contact with clients and based solely on
administration, I have learned some elements of the agency context through my internship. I
have learned that the Village is committed to lawful and ethical behavior in all its activities and
requires its Board members, committee members, independent contractors, employees and
volunteers to conduct themselves in a manner that complies with all applicable laws and
regulations. The Village Services Code of Ethics is one of the key element of the Quality and
Safety Program. Moreover, the Compliance-Ethics Plan ensures the integrity of implementation
and information used within the Quality and Safety Program. My internship placement agency is
a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that doesnt have any political affiliation but received supports
from the federal, states, and local government. The Village promotes the healing of the spirits of
children, families and communities broken by trauma including violence, neglect, addiction,
poverty, mental illness, racism and other serious societal problems. I viewed the Village as an
agency that holds a deep faith in the worth of every child and believes it is possible to have a
lasting, positive impact on each troubled child and family.

Chapter 3-Developing Ethical Competence

The difficult ethical issue that I dealt with during my internship was a harassment complaint
made by a male employee against females employees. At my placement agency that I also
worked as one of the On-Duty supervisors, the Residential Treatment Facility (RTF) is the
predominantly female environment. The presence of a new male employee stirs up conflict
because the agency has not had a chance to conduct sensitivity training. Some of the female
employees made an inappropriate remark to the new male employee. He complains to me; in
response, I sanctioned those responsible for the conduct. I also wonder if it would be wise to
move the new male employee to another position where he would be less likely to draw
attention. Based upon my ethical knowledge, sensitivity and, behavior, I refused to move the new
male employee because it was unethical to do so. I strongly believe that treating the male
employee differently based on his gender or in response to a harassment complaint may be
considered discriminatory and unethical conduct.
Chapter 4-Learning to Learn from Experience

The strongest attribute that I have in the Integrating Processing Model (IMP) is Step 2
(Reflecting). On many occasions, I mentally wander through where I have been and tried to
make some sense out of it through reflection. Reflection has been my best (IPM) because it has
many facets. For example, reflecting on my work enhances its meaning. Moreover, reflecting on
my experience encourages insight and complex learning. Furthermore, I foster my own growth
when I control my learning, so some reflection is best alone. Reflection can be enhanced,
however, when I ponder my learning with others. My reflection involves linking my current
experience to previous learnings. Equally important, I used reflection to transform my experience
into genuine learning about individual values and goals and about larger social issues.
Nevertheless, my weakness is having the capacity to identify relevant knowledge and theory
(step 3). I find it difficult to change my individual understanding and opinions about how I see
things at the time. Even if I dont agree with someones opinion, at least I agreed with their right
to have it. I believe that not all opinions are necessarily based on facts. An opinion is a point of
view, a belief, judgment or attitude. It, therefore, means that an opinion is not always a truth or
fact. The only opinion that mattered, I realized, was my own. It is what I think and believes of
myself that is important. To work on this belief, I find ways to mold experiences and processes
into my own which is not considered as an open mind. Moreover, I asked questions and attempt
to try new processes and test new theories before I can arrive at a decision.

Chapter 5-Using Supervision

One of the most valuable workplace traits that both my site supervisor and I shared is patience.
We both know that it takes the time to get to know your role within an organization, and it takes
even more time to understand others work styles. When we met, I recognized that my site
supervisor wasnt new to her position and that she knew the culture at the Village. Moreover, she
had great patience with me as a graduate student who was coming into her own workplace
identity. The challenges that I have encountered in my supervision are learning to adapt to my
new role and meeting deadlines. To grow in my skills to use supervision effectively requires
trust. When my site supervisor and I first started working together, I had to prove myself and
gain her trust. I wasnt afraid to show my strengths and acknowledge my mistakes. Based on my
internship supervisory experience, I anticipate seeing supervisory support when I enter my first
professional job. The support of a supervisor can lead to further growth.

Chapter 6-Communicating in Your Internship

As a graduate intern, my internship does not require a direct contact with individuals, families,
groups, and communities. Rather, I am being taught the administrative aspects of human services
which included making leadership decisions, participating in administrative meetings and
supervision of staff. As I enter the human service profession, my area of interest is child abuse
and neglect interventions. Interventions are aimed in part at improving the capacity of parents
and caretakers to cease certain harmful behaviors or to adopt behaviors commonly accepted as
contributing to healthy child development. The behaviors targeted include those that are illegal
and wrong, as well as those for which evidence demonstrates a link to negative or positive
impacts on a child's development or safety. Parental capacity and behaviors can be altered either
directly by providing services to individual caretakers to improve their knowledge and skills, or
indirectly by creating a context in which doing the right thing is easier, such as by reducing
stress and increasing support within the immediate family and local community.

Chapter 7-Developing Cultural Competence

It is important to become cultural competence in the workplace to avoid taking things personally
& improve the relationship with coworkers. Many of workplace daily misunderstandings are
nothing more than clear examples of cultural differences. Many of the examples of cultural
differences should do with how much people share about themselves and their families with their
co-workers. How much is too much? It really depends on who you ask. Latinos tend not only to
share a lot about themselves but also to ask about other peoples families. They can often surprise
a colleague with a question like, Hows your aunt Sarah doing? When the colleague no longer
remembers that her aunt had an operation a month ago. They ask because they care and they
expect others to care about them as well. Therefore, when nobody asks Latinos about their sick
child or their cousin who got married, they tend to feel isolated and disengaged. My goal will be
to learn to balance my need to remain humble with cultural differences in the workplace that
demand that you talk about your achievements if you want to move forward in your career.
Chapter 8-Writing and Reporting Within Your Field Agency

As indicated earlier, my internship does not require a direct contact with clients. But report
writing is essential to the human service profession. However, please see a sample of my
professional writing and reporting:

Professional Writing and Reporting

The purpose of this report is to analyze the causes of the incidents which led up to, and resulted
in, the injury of a staff member John Brown. The report will further draw conclusions from the
incident, and will make several recommendations to assist in the prevention of such an incident
occurring again in the future.

Account of the incident

Mr. Brown an elderly resident suffered from osteoporosis, a condition which causes the bones to
become fragile and brittle. On March 15, 2017, it appears that a Care Assistant employed by
management, had cause to restrain Mr. Brown, and did so by pulling his shoulder. Because of
this action, Mr. Brown sustained a fracture to his shoulder joint, and subsequently rushed to the
Brun Mawr hospital emergency room. No further medical details are available to suggest an
alternative cause of the injury.

Observations

There appears to have been several factors which contributed to the injury of Mr. Brown. Each
one is detailed as follows:
1. On said occasion, it was reported that Mr. Brown was poking a fellow resident with a
stick. This behavior was deemed to be inappropriate, and Mr. Brown was restrained by a
Care Assistant, who pulled his shoulder.

2. It has been reported that it is common practice in the home for care staff to use physical
means, to restrain or redirect residents, however none of the care assistants appear to have
received any training in this regard.

3. It is not clear whether or not there were any senior staff, or supervisors, present when the
incident occurred.

4. A written report was subsequently prepared by another staff, and in it there was a
suggestion that the care assistant lost his temper with the resident. This suggestion was
subsequently denied by the care assistant, and it is unclear whether or not the care
assistant had seen, and was given an opportunity to discuss, the contents of the report.

5. It is not clear whether any formal incident reporting procedures was followed.

6. It is understood that a written operational policy exists, forbidding the use of physical
restraint. However, the care assistant concerned was neither aware of its contents, nor in
fact, aware of its existence.

Recommendations

In direct response to the observations outlined (1-6), the following recommendations are made:

a) It is recommended that management undertakes a complete review of the procedures,


training and guidelines for the use of restraints.
b) Social Services should be able to assist with the provision of a copy of their guidelines
for good practice on the use of restraint in residential care for adults.

c) It is further suggested that you prepare your own guidelines which can be displayed in
staff areas and distributed to staff. This should be an integral part of all future staff
training and retraining/refresher programmers.

d) It is recommended that a staffing review is carried out to ensure that junior and/or
inexperienced staff are supervised by a senior member of staff always.

e) It should also be pointed out that as proprietor, you have a duty of care to familiarize
yourself with the day-to-day activities of staff (and residents), as you may be held
accountable for them.

Incident Reporting

It is recommended that a full review of incident reporting procedures is carried out.

Incident reporting should be immediate and submitted in writing by the member of staff
in the correct format.

Any report which is prepared by the proprietor must be agreed by the member of staff to
be a true and accurate representation of the incident to avoid misunderstandings in the
future.

Furthermore, reports should be signed by the member of staff involved, and the
proprietor, in an Incident Report Book and retained for future reference.

Operational Policy (Obs. 7)


It is recommended that copies of the documented operational policy are circulated to all
staff with immediate effect.

Furthermore, management should ensure that staff is familiarized with the operational
policy on the commencement of employment.

This is even more pertinent when compliance with such a policy constitutes part of a contract of
employment.

General Recommendations

It is noted that an improved training scheme for care assistants is to be initiated.

It is recommended that familiarization of the care regulations laid down in the Registered
Homes Act (1984) becomes an integral part of this training.

Chapter 9-Taking Care of Yourself

The internship has taught me that stress is increasingly becoming a part of our daily lives. As
stated by Kiser 2016, stress can be best described as a situation where demands from the
environment exceed the capacity for an effective response by an individual and can potentially
have physical and psychological consequence. I observed that being unsure about my duties as
an intern, how my job responsibilities might be changing, or the goals of my department can lead
to stress. Furthermore, reporting to more than one boss, juggling the demands of different
administrative managers can also become stressful. I have learned that worrying about my future,
interpersonal conflict, and having low self-esteem as an intern are contributing factors to self-
imposed stress.
Equally important, to reduce and manage these stressors effectively, I more often
blamed myself for being self-critical, seeking advice and help from others, and finding comfort
in religion. I have learned that skipping breaks and putting off dealing with problems can be
considered as pitfalls to stress that must be avoided. You might achieve 20 minutes of extra
work, but when you skip breaks you'll start to lose the ability to see the big picture of your
responsibilities. You'll also end up feeling more irritable, and increase your vulnerability to
developing stress. The urge to put off dealing with problems is understandable.
However, avoidance coping usually generates additional stress in the long run.
Maintaining healthy boundaries between my professional life and personal life can get hectic
sometimes. Most people can probably admit to having their professional work life intrude on
their personal relationships. Being able to strike a balance between my professional and personal
lives has helped me to become more productive and less likely to burnout. This balancing act
takes careful planning and preparation, but it is possible.
Additionally, I have learned that being aware of my surroundings can contribute to
staying safe in a workplace. This requires both employees and interns knowing the hazards of
their jobs or workplace. Once I have learned these risks, I can keep clear of potentially hazardous
areas, and potentially hazardous situations. Moreover, knowing as much as possible about the
population my agency serves, as well as its security and safety measures will help interns greatly
to take preventive measures (Kiser, 2016).
Reference:
Kiser, P. M. (2016). The Human Service Internship: Getting the Most from your Experience.
Australia:
Cengage Learning

Chapter 10-Ending Your Internship

What I appreciated most about my Internship is an excellent opportunity to build professional


connections. Unlike networking events, the people I connect with during an internship spend
time with you in a professional setting and become familiar with your work. Therefore, these
connections will give me a strong recommendation in the future. Theres a very good chance to
learn new skills at the internship. For example, you might end up learning a new software
program, a type of analysis, or project management techniques. In the real world of employment,
learning never stops, and its great to start adding to your skills inventory early. My regret was
not having more than 15 weeks for my internship. Besides, I did not get as much hand-on
experience as I would have liked.
Chapter 11-Planning your Career
Career Goals

Upon graduation with a Mister of Science Degree in Administration of Human


Services, I wish to continue my career in human services. I'm not exactly sure which aspect I
would like to go into, but I have the most interest in children and families. I would like to better
the outcome for children who are receiving anything less than their basic needs. Within the next
five years I wish to find a position in this area that I have the most passion about. After that time,
I hope to have found a position in the area and begun work helping those who need it. Equally
important, I hope to establish a nonprofit organization to be known as Reaching the Unreached
People (RUP), that will provide vocational education for former child soldiers in Liberia, West
Africa who were denied education opportunities because of their involvement in the 14 years
Liberia civil war. Based on the strengths finder test report and personal interest results, I feel
that I am on the right track. According to the strengths finder test report, my strengths are
connectedness, relator, learner, arranger, and individualization. This means that I work with
ideas, am careful of generalizations, and think before acting.
I am open and well understood, see possibilities, and work with the complicated. I
consider other feelings and understand needs and values. Moreover, I decide, plan, order, and
make quick decisions. Meaning I explore and understand things and events, value creative ideas
and am sensitive, and help, teach, counsel, and serve others. I feel that the aspects of the
strengths finder test reflect me as a person, and I feel that it is excellent skills to have in a human
services profession. How is one to help others if they don't understand needs and values, consider
feelings, or generalizes about people and situations?
Additionally, according to the MAPP Assessment test, my highest motivational factor is
to get things done, reach the goal, get a grade, produce a finished product, get the prize, and etc.
Self-satisfaction is tied directly to completed achievement. To prepare myself for this career
field, I have taken many core courses in administration of human services that will guide me.
The knowledge acquired will enable me to understand problems that people may have and where
these problems may stem from. I have taken communications classes to help relate to the people
that I will serve and work with.