Jean Munn, a Bachelor of Social Work student from Cedar Crest College, spent the 2022-23 academic year as an intern at Jewish Family Service. She entered this position with more than six years of experience working with adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities at Via of the Lehigh Valley. Under the supervision of Rebecca Axelrod-Cooper, MSW-LSW, Impact Coordinator, Jean worked closely with Amanda Thomas, PhD, Accessibility and Inclusion Coordinator. “At the core of social work learning is having students take lessons from the classroom and apply them in their internships. Often, the intern will bring a fresh perspective or thought process that is shared with the staff. The opportunity to grow and learn together only enhances the work that we do,” said Rebecca.
During her internship experience, Jean had the opportunity to expand her professional knowledge surrounding accessibility and inclusion. When asked to reflect on her internship experience, Jean remarked, “The culture at JFS was so friendly and welcoming. I really felt that all of the staff members were as invested in my education as I was. I was well supported and given so many great opportunities to expand on my existing knowledge. I really enjoyed assisting Amanda with trainings based on accessibility and inclusion, but especially on digital accessibility, which is the practice of removing barriers that may prevent access to websites or other digital tools. During my time at JFS I was able to take a class on digital accessibility, create an accessibility toolkit, and assist with trainings that Amanda presented in the community on digital accessibility.”
Jean stated that she looks forward to taking this knowledge with her and implementing it professionally. She said, “The knowledge I’ve gained about accessibility and inclusion is going to positively impact my practice as a social worker. Now that I know how to create content that’s more accessible, I plan to continue and make it my personal standard. I plan to stay up-to-date on digital accessibility and encourage any agency I work with to do the same.”
Reflecting on her experience working with Jean, Amanda said, ”Jean showed tremendous growth throughout her internship. She was extremely eager to learn and take on new challenges like Supported Decision Making, digital accessibility, and inclusive practices. Jean elevated our agency’s mission of accessibility and inclusion through her creation of videos, resources, and toolkits. I especially enjoyed working with her on digital accessibility trainings. I can’t wait to see what’s next for her.”
Jean will graduate with her BSW from Cedar Crest College on May 13th. She has been accepted to the Master of Social Work program at Florida State University and plans to move to Tallahassee, Florida where she will continue her education and seek full-time employment in the field of social work while completing her master’s degree.