While growing up, I thought that Jesus’ was the saddest story of all time. It pained me to listen to the vivid narration of how people could lose touch with humanity to the extent of crucifying one of their own to remind them that they stopped being human.
The most grotesque part was the fact that believers celebrate the execution for supposedly being the price of salvation. This story is over 2,000 years old, and there are over 2 billion Christians worldwide who can retell it. However, the moral decadence contemporary society oozes would defy the disguise of the strongest religious cologne.
I chose social work because I have deep faith in humanity. I believe that true development and a richly satisfying life are derivable from empowering the majority cast further away from the epicenter through the ever-widening economic gap between the poor and the rich. In one of my 12th-grade writing assignments, I was intrigued by one of Paul Savoy’s dated but still relevant news articles titled “Human Needs, Human Rights.”
Savoy convinced me that the atrophy of political will and moral vision had ushered in an eternal age of atrocity. In this bleak era, America, despite being endowed with enormous private and public wealth, has grown numb. At the same time, millions, including children, are systemically herded into poverty and executed through starvation and lack of health coverage. A vicious, self-sustaining cycle is further created by, for instance, constitutionally guaranteeing a crime suspect a lawyer but not food when they are starving.
It is deeply disturbing that a nation can still boast development in the global arena while inundated with problems characterizing a Third World country. I believe social work is a practical way to criticize the deplorable standards our society has sunk to by exemplifying the change I desire. I was brought up in a family that cherishes work to unlock human potential and promote consciousness toward the suffering of those we are conditioned to dismiss and avoid.
This goal is riddled with incalculable challenges, especially in a country valorizing individuality. It is further flung out of reach if the seeker fails to understand human development, behavior, and the interaction of cultural, economic, and social institutions.
My past academic background equipped me with practical knowledge-seeking skills in the quest for social change, cohesion, development, and empowered people. I also volunteered for social work at Big Brothers, Big Sisters, where I mentored three at-risk youths.
However, I am afraid there is a lot I need to learn to understand how existing systems churn and sanitize, dehumanizing social stratification, and possible ways to disrupt this trend and revert power to the people. I need a degree in social work to fill the knowledge gaps in me and realize this ambitious dream.