By Destiny Santana, Eric Garcia, Franciso Garcia, and Peter Allen Lee
Inspired by one of their Social Work Policy professors, Masters of Social Work students Eric Garcia and Francisco “Pancho” Garcia have brought to fruition a social work podcast. From an assignment in Dr. Jennifer Wolf’s class which involved creating a one-off podcast to discuss policy, Eric and Pancho were inspired to create a serial podcast that would discuss and explore the social work field in more depth. Through special guests and topics, this podcast was meant to create conversations that would open the world of social work to its listeners. The team of students invited Dr. Peter Allen Lee, Director and Professor at the School of Social Work, to be the School’s representative partner and occasional co-host.
“We are very excited to share that SWGSA [the Social Work Graduate Student Association] and the School of Social Work have partnered to create and launch a new podcast, The Social Work Experience. The podcast hopes to create a community in the social work program by having Authentic Conversations at least once a month. They will do this by having special guests and announce pertinent information. Some future topics may include the program application process, getting to know social work students and professors, discussing social issues and problems, and professional development. Ultimately, they want to have discussions beyond the classroom!”
The inaugural episode was recorded on October 25, 2022 and published in November 2022, and now has five episodes produced, with more coming. The podcast has broadcasted interviews and spotlights on topics such as social work and life as a journey, how to apply to an MSW program, the student organization and student leadership, post-graduate life and career planning, and examples of specialized practice such as child welfare and the Title IV-E Program.
Currently, there have been 433 listeners and audience members locally, nationally, and even internationally. Primarily, the listeners are from the United States and in California, but there are listeners in other states such as Washington, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Virginia, Nevada, and Ohio. Other countries include Mexico, the United Kingdom, India, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines. Eric and Pancho are especially excited about the community being built among Social Work programs across the country, San José State University, professionals in the field, and other community partners since the podcast has launched and evolved.
“We are so appreciative and excited about our podcast, and looking forward to growing our audience, ultimately to inform, advocate, and better the lives around us. SJSU Social Work: Stand Up! Stand Proud! Stand Together!” – Eric and Pancho