Iona Dunthorne BA social work student case study

Iona Dunthorne

I chose to study within the School of Healthcare at the University of Leeds because the courses it offered were the ones I was most interested in. I knew I didn’t want to do nursing or anything health related but I was always particularly interested in Social Work, Mental Health and Occupational Therapy courses.

I have quite a few reasons why I decided to apply for the Social Work course. When I lived at home I decided to not take my A-levels any further after I did my AS exams due to lack of interest in the subjects I picked and the style of learning at sixth form. So after talking to my career advisor, it was suggested I embarked on the Health and Social Care course at college. I instantly loved it, I felt as though I had finally found something I was extremely passionate about and I excelled in the course. One of my lecturers at college had been a Social Worker, and it was this individual which inspired me to view Social Work in a different light and made me feel more grounded about where I was heading in the future in terms of a career. Social Work is increasingly becoming more important to me as a career the more I embark on placements and attend lectures, the more I learn the more I want to support and help others.

In the first year, I really enjoyed my ‘Disability, Inclusion and the life course’ module as I am particularly interested in supporting individuals with learning disabilities once I am a registered Social Worker. This module enabled me to view the different aspects of disability and how individuals with a disability are viewed by society.

One of the main highlights of the course has definitely been placement, I learned so much last year when working with a group of service users I had never experienced working with before (older people) and I am just so excited to see what my second-year placement will bring and the people I am going to meet.

I have been given a lot of support over the last year from my tutor, it is always helpful to have a friendly face to talk to if there are any issues concerning personal or work-related issues as I know they will do the best they can to support me.

In order to become a Social Worker, it is mandatory to have the degree, so everything I learned during my time at the University of Leeds will contribute to a team that I will be amongst in the future. I currently have a job working one to one with children and young people with learning disabilities, this course enables me to see how I could potentially support one of these individuals one day as a registered Social Worker.

You won’t regret studying at Leeds, I was very nervous before coming to University and even had doubts about whether I should embark on the course. However, I'm so glad I did as I have met some amazing people on my journey so far and learned so much about myself and others, it's definitely an opportunity you shouldn’t let go of.

I love Leeds, from coming from quite a small city to such a vibrant, student city like Leeds is amazing. There's always something going on at the University, great shopping and great nightlife. It just has a lovely vibe about it.