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WITC graduates inaugural HSA class

WITC-New Richmond graduated its inaugural Human Services Associate class on May 17. The program started two years ago and helps address the growing need for professionals as the human services industry increases.

(4/22/13): The inaugural Human Services Associates (HSA) class graduated Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College's New Richmond campus on May 17 with their associate degrees. The program, which started fall 2011, continues its popularity as the need for people in the human services industry increases.

These students spent their second year getting hands-on experience by interning at human service agencies, with some students learning at more than one location. Students found their own internships and some even received job offers from their field placement locations.

The internships or field placement positions are non-paid and are in addition to the HSA coursework. Joel Gibson, instructor and licensed social worker, meets with the students and site supervisors several times during their field placements. The agency completes an evaluation on the student, as does Gibson, at the mid-term and end of the two qualifying semesters.

Some students already work in the human services field and others plan to continue their education upon graduation. HSA graduates may hold positions such as case worker, community support worker, intake worker and others. Working in the field, they serve in supportive functions assisting in assessment, treatment, interviewing and case development situations.

“I’m incredibly proud of this first group of students,” Gibson says. “They are all so competent and are great ambassadors for WITC. I’m very grateful and want to recognize the many agencies who partner with WITC to take part in these students’ education. The people at these agencies work with our students and enrich the education process to help prepare them for their future careers.”