Lowy-GEM Student Quotes

Being in the Lowy GEM program this year has been an amazing experience. I never would have thought that I would develop such an interest in working with older adults, but I absolutely loved it.  – Brita Orwoll


The Lowy-GEM Program in Aging offered me a unique learning experience both as a first year social work student at BUSSW and in my second year as I strengthened my clinical skills and began focusing on the work I would like to do in my career. The most valuable aspect of the Lowy-GEM Program for me was attending the monthly seminars. I have found these sessions to be so diverse and informative and I enjoyed each one. I have truly enjoyed the opportunity to be a part of the Lowy-GEM Program in Aging throughout my time at BU. I feel that the work with the aging population is increasing in importance and changing each day. This program has better prepared me for the work I will do in the future as a social worker. – Caroline Lamson


I learned that older adults often have complex and very individualized mental health needs.  As Lowy-GEM social work students I think we are in a place to promote emotional well-being and optimal mental health for our older clients with knowledge of the aging process. – Carolynn Howell


The duality of my primary and enrichment placements made for a particularly rich experience.  I spend a day and a half with people who are living independently and, for the most part, self-sufficient and beginning to come to terms with their aging process. then I drive across Boston to my enrichment placement and suddenly I am transported via a time machine to fifteen years in the future as I support hospice patients through the most significant and final transition.- Eliza Royer


I am grateful to have been a part of the Lowy-GEM program this year; it has certainly contributed to my professional development as a social worker pursuing work in the field of aging.  Thank you for a wonderful experience. In my placement, I have been working with professionals who actively seek to prevent and mitigate health problems as we age through creative program planning and development – the possibilities are exciting and I hope to continue in this vein post-graduation. Despite being a macro student, I have been able to maintain a direct connection with the older adult population by co-leading 6-week long Chronic-Disease Self-Management groups.  This has been a wonderful experience that aptly complimented my participation in the Lowy-GEM program. – Erica Farrell


    I came to social work school to pursue a career in gerontology. After participating in the Lowy-GEM program, I am more certain than ever that I am in the right field.  Having the opportunity to learn about other Lowy-GEM students’ field placements, and the innovative social service agencies that serve aging populations here in Boston, such as HEARTH and the LGBT Aging Project, has re-iterated for me what a diverse, exciting, and important field this is. – Erin Der-Mcleod


    I am incredibly honored to have been a part of the Lowy GEM Program as a second year masters student and feel as if it has been an integral part of my education and field experiences in the past year. – Jessica Chmielewski


    The Lowy-Gem Program in Aging was one of the main reasons I was drawn to the Boston University School of Social Work. – Jessica Moss


    I had the pleasure to have been a part of two agencies that taught me more than I could ever imagine. As I quickly approach my last few days at my practicum, and reflect on this past year, the skills I gained are skills I will continue to master in hopes to continue to work with this population. – Jessica Perez


      Being in the Lowy-GEM program this year has been such a great experience.  Before going into this, I knew that I had an interest in working with the aging population, but I was not exactly sure what that meant.  After learning and experiencing so much from the seminars and enrichment, I can say that I definitely do want to work with this population. The seminars covered everything from healthy aging and wellness to death and dying, as well as everything in between.  Every seminar was wonderful, but I think I will remember the death and dying one for a long time.  I was really touched by the stories that were shared during that seminar at Sherrill House. – Julie French


      Participating in the Lowy-GEM program has given me the opportunity to more deeply explore my interest in geriatric social work. During my internship with the guardianship program at JF&CS, I’ve had the opportunity to work with some of the most vulnerable elders. My work with these individuals has not only taught me more about  disease and its progression, but also clarified the importance of advocating for individuals who cannot advocate for themselves. – Katharine Glossner


      Being a part of the Lowy-GEM program has been such an enriching part of my experience this year. – Katie Byron


        Through the Lowy GEM Program I was placed at Sherrill House with an enrichment placement at Hearth Through having a primary and enrichment placement, I had a wide range of experiences and exposure to different populations within the greater aging population. In the monthly Lowy GEM seminars I was introduced to new topics that are relevant for gerontological social work, was able to hear from professionals about their work in the field, and meet other students who are interested in aging as well. – Laura Madeline Hudson


          From the first time I knew about the program, I was very excited about the opportunity to learn from two agencies serving older adults.. When choosing my field placement, I was not sure about my concentration. I wanted to experience clinical and macro focus from the perspective of two different agencies. My primary placement was at the Executive Office of Elder Affairs (EOEA) which offered me a macro experience, and my enrichment experience at Ruggles Assisted Living-Hearth offered me a clinical perspective. Both of them were very meaningful in my learning process. The Lowy-Gem program and its entire content of seminars and field placement makes this program a complete experience for the student who wants to build a career in the aging field. – Maria Victoria Carrasco


            The Lowy-GEM program has proven to be extremely worthwhile and incredibly rewarding. When I began graduate school I already held an interest in working with the older adult population, and hoped to learn more about issues that surround aging. Thanks to the Lowy-GEM program, I was able to pursue those interests and expand my knowledge base around issues that the older adult population faces. This was made possible both through the immersion in my two field placements and through the fabulous presenters who covered a variety of topics at the seminars we attended. – Max Winer


            I am very fortunate to have gone through the Lowy-Gem Program because it gave me the opportunity to learn how it feels to work with older adults and to view them as people, rather than just as grandparents. – Zuleika Toribio


            Reflecting on my time participating in the Lowy-GEM program makes me appreciate the variety and depth of information on work with older adults we’ve had access to over the last year.  Each month, I took away information that I will use in my professional life after I leave Boston University School of Social Work.  I will be able to better serve the geriatric population that I am passionate about because of my knowledge of issues impacting older adults. – Sarah McDonald