Social justice intern prepares toolkits for low-income households
At Community Action of Wayne and Medina Counties, Sabrina Azad ’25, a communication sciences & disorders major at The College of Wooster, worked to provide resources to the community in Wooster. Preparing informational toolkits about local programming available to low-income families and organizing a social service resource fair were some of the APEX Fellow’s responsibilities. Azad became proficient with effective communication and dealing with professional calls and emails during her social justice internship.
“Though I had some volunteer experience in social services, this experience allowed me to see behind the scenes. It was a great opportunity to learn about Community Action’s realm of service and how it relates to areas of need within our community.”
—Sabrina Azad ’25
How did you learn about the internship opportunity for your APEX Fellowship?
“I learned about the social justice internship while trying to secure an APEX Fellowship in the field of speech-language pathology. I noticed that one of the SJI field placements was at CAW/M, which caught my eye. I had previously volunteered at CAW/M through my FYS called “Make a Difference,” which studied the impact of socioeconomic status on language and literacy development. The position at Community Action was a good fit for me because I am interested in social services and public health. Though I had some volunteer experience in social services, this experience allowed me to see behind the scenes. It was a great opportunity to learn about Community Action’s realm of service and how it relates to areas of need within our community.”
What interests you most about the work you did?
“I was interested in learning about areas of need in Wayne County and how local agencies work to address them. On the day-to-day, I reached out to other social service agencies to prepare for CAW/M’s Resource Fair for Providers, met with representatives from these agencies, completed secretarial duties for the social service manager and transportation department, and so on. I was also assigned a unique role when CAW/M’s transportation coordinator went on vacation for a week. Typically, community members call the transportation coordinator to request rides, and the transportation coordinator then arranges these rides with private contractors. During that particular week, some calls were redirected to me so that I could help arrange and schedule transportation.”
Who was your fellowship mentor and how did they help you to succeed in this position?
“My fellowship mentor was Brooke Krause, associate professor of economics and business economics. Dr. Krause and Cathy McConnell led weekly discussions with our fellow interns that were built into the internship experience. Dr. Krause helped generate a conversation about the work our host agencies do, educating me about her experience in and understanding of social justice work. By strengthening my background in social services, Dr. Krause helped me better perform my duties at CAW/M.”
How has the internship helped you to see what’s next for you?
“I hope to become a speech-language pathologist. Though this remains my career goal, my experiences from the Social Justice Internship program may help me identify ways to better reach underserved populations, for example by getting involved with pro bono healthcare services or agencies like the Viola Startzman Clinic. ”
Related Areas of Study
Communication Sciences & Disorders
Start the path toward a career in audiology or speech language pathology through coursework and clinical experiences.Major Minor