Chapter Update November-December- January 2011-12 Back by Popular Demand: Early Bird Special for Spring Symposium This year the Chapter is thrilled to oﬀer “early bird discounts” for Symposium parcipants who register by February 1, 2012. The Spring Symposium will be held March 11-14, 2012 at the Doubletree Hotel, 2100 Bush River Road, Columbia, SC. While we are sll ﬁnalizing the workshop oﬀerings, we can tell you that highlighted speakers include: Anton Gunn, MSW, Regional Director at the Region V oﬃce of the US Dept of Health and Human Services Dr. Anna Scheye, Dean of the USC College of Social Work and Regional Repre-
senta!ve for NASW. WHAT’S INSIDE: Dr. Kathleen O’Shea, Independent Social Worker, Pulitzer nominee and former nun Dr. Miriam Freeman, Professor Emeritus, College of Social Work, USC Dr. Kenney Phelps, Assistant Professor of Clinical Neuropsychiatry and Behavioral Science, USC Mark Binkley, Deputy Director of Administra!on, General Counsel, SC Department of Mental Health And many more! The Symposium will oﬀer as many as 20 contact hours for CEUs. Save big on the 2012 symposium by registering early. See below for fee schedule.
Have You Met:
A SW Intern’s Perspec-
What’s Inside: From Where I Sit
Getting Money from Insurance Companies
year) and CEU events, recruit
Registraon will open in December. Check our website for updates: new members, communicate with unit membership. www.scnasw.org
If you are interested or know of someone who would be well suited for one of the posiRegular non-member: $275 Non-member: $350 tions below, please contact the Student member: $55 Student member: $75 chapter of,ice at email@example.com Student non-member: $75 Student non-member: $75 Senior member: $95 Senior member: $125 POSITIONS: Treasurer Elect Senior non-member: $250 Senior non-member: $250 Secretary Graduate Student RepresentaWhat are the duties of a board tive SCNASW ELECTIONS!!! It’s election time! Once again, The Chapter member? Undergraduate Student RepCommittee on Nominations and Leadership • Attend quarterly board meet- resentative is beginning outreach measures to recruit ings, usually held in Columbia Catawba Unit Representative interested candidates for elective positions • Develop chapter priorities, pol- Northern Unit Representative for the upcoming 2012 election year. We Pee Dee Unit Representative icies, and annual budget are excited about a new and innovative • Promote the chapter and bene- Southern Unit Representative year and are seeking energetic, goal-driven, Western Unit Representative ,its of membership and life changing social workers such as • If Unit Representative, plan Delegate Assembly you. unit meetings (at least two a Alternate Delegate Assembly EARLY BIRD Registra#on (before 2.1.12) Regular member: $190
Regular Registraon (a5er 2.1.12) Regular member: $250
Chapter Update Have You Met Rhonda Conyers? General
dents and their parents
How did you decide to become a social worker? I have always enjoyed helping others and working to making a difference in the lives of the disenfranchised. I performed a fair amount of community outreach through my church and one day decided that I no longer desired to be a CPA, because I wanted to do something more altruistic in nature. Instead of pursuing a graduate degree in accounting, I enrolled in the MSW program at USC in fall of 2009, and never looked back.
• A “typical” day involves… processing refunds, providing guidance to parents and students and helping them to navigate the University system, providing information and support to other University departments. What do you like the most about your job? Connecting students and parents to the needed resources. Helping to make the bureaucracy of the University less cumbersome to navigate.
How long have you been in the 6ield of social work? In 1998, I began What do you 6ind most challenging working with youth at the Greenhouse about your job? Ever-increasing work load(paperwork) allows for Runaway Shelter little time to offer information and NASW member since: September support parents and students 2011 Philosophical-tell us your thoughts Academic-tell us about your education on social work I attended undergrad at the University of South Carolina. Received my BA in Sociology with a minor in Business Administration. I am currently working on my MSW at the University of South Carolina, upon completion I will take a brief hiatus before pursuing a Doctorate. Professional-tell us about your job – N/A(currently a full-time graduate student, I left my job at the USC in October the information below pertains to my position at Carolina) Name of Employer- University of South Carolina
Length of time with this employer- 4.5 years
What type of clients do you serve? Undergraduate / graduate stu-
• If you could do things all over again, would you choose the same path? Yes, I most content when I am helping others. • What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? I would like to be an educator at the collegiate level. What advice would you offer someone new to the 6ield of social work? Do not be rigid in your views, always be willing to try new endeavors, be active consumers of research, and always be open to introspection.
What abilities or personal qualities do you believe contribute most to success in this 6ield? An individual must be concerned about the human condition, be altruistic,
empathetic, and be ever ready to engage in critical thinking and advocacy for their clients. Excellent communication skills are a must, you must be willing to listen more than you speak at times. What do you see as the biggest challenge facing social workers today? I think one of the biggest challenges is the unwillingness of others to view Social Workers as professionals. Individuals hear the term social worker and immediately think of case management. Personal-tell us about your non -work self What is your favorite hobby/pastime? Playing tennis
If money/time were no object, what would be your dream vacation? I would take three weeks and explore the Greek Isles with my baby sister and my husband.
• Who is your favorite historical 6igure? Mother Teresa • Who/what is your favorite artist/type of art? I like the paintings of Tintoretto. Who/what is your favorite musician/band/type of music? Contemporary Christian
Who/what is your favorite writer/book? Favorite author to date is John Steinbeck, my favorite book is The Grapes of Wrath.
November-December-January 2012 A Social Work Student’s Perspective What has happened recently in your life that makes you proud/smile?
By Tonya Fishburne, SW Intern
With the current economic downturn, the job market is looking bleak. As social work students about to graduate, this is a cause for concern. I asked a few peers enProviding guidance, as- tering the job market how this was aﬀecng them. At sistance, and resources what point should graduate students start seeking emfor one of my fellow ployment? Where do we look? colleagues in the MSW program with her book Growing up we were always told that in order to ﬁnd bag drive. She was able success and a well-paying job you need a college deto exceed her goal and gree. Living in today’s world is seems like you need a now has an ample sup- college degree and a blessing! I ﬁnd that in any job I’m ply of book bags for applying for, I have compeon: other students. So Rhonda Conyers needy children at Alcorn how can one make oneself more marketable than the Middle School. next person? Many students fear entering the job market because of the chances of being turned down. Some What are some “words of wisdom” you like to live companies may say that you are too qualiﬁed because by? you have a Master’s degree and some may say that Do what you can, with what you have, where you you’re not qualiﬁed enough.
Chapter Update Editorial Committee Ann Dwyer, Chair Taryn Dominguez Carla Damron Sue Lyman Sally Hayes, proof reader Reporters/writers wanted! Submit to the newsletter!
Mollie Moody, MSW student, stated “a5er graduang I plan to move back to Virginia and look for a job in therapeuc foster care, with hopes of geFng my LMSW.” In taking steps to seeking employment, Mollie has stayed in contact with her undergraduate ﬁeld placement agency to see if any opening arises. She plans to seek employment in the Virginia area, with the salary ranging from $35k to $40k. Mollie does not feel that ﬁnding a job will be diﬃcult for her because social workers are always needed. She has already started looking for jobs, but will connue to look more around February of next year. Rachel Tubbs, also an MSW student, is not so conﬁdent about ﬁnding a job. “A5er compleng my MSW degree I plan to ﬁnd a job, ideally in the health care seFng, but with this economy I’ll take whatever job I can get.” Rachel has not oﬃcially started looking for jobs, but she has talked to several contacts back in Virginia about the possibility of geFng a job in their agency. She has not really thought about what salary range that she wants to be in, but she would like to be in the upper $30k to $40k range. Rachel said that she is afraid that ﬁnding a job will be diﬃcult, but she’s come to the conclusion that a job is a job and she would be thankful for what-
Chapter Update SW Student cont’d job that she gets. “I’m not expecng for my ﬁrst job to be my dream job,” said Rachel. She ended by saying that she has been puFng oﬀ her job search for as long as possible, but she’ll probably start looking in mid- January of next year.
From Where I Sit … Carla Damron, Executive Director
On the side of the Harvest Hope Utilization of SNAP (the truck, there is a photo of two Supplemental Nutrition African American boys, gangly Assistance Program) mirkids with arms draped affection- rors the trend. From ately over each other’s shoul- March 2008 to May 2011, ders. The boys stare out at the the number of SNAP parcars that pass the truck. They ticipants in South Carolina don’t look pathetic or tragic, increased by 139,275 and Upon graduaon I plan to they look like normal children. total bene,its received by take the licensure exam and They could be the boys who play SNAP participants inseek employment within a in my neighborhood. creased by $53,729,281. much food (just like healthcare seFng. I have Thanksgiving). It’s so started looking at jobs in Co- It scares me to think that these Yet in the face of these easy to forget how growing needs, political lumbia, SC and the CharloIe, are the faces of hunger. blessed I am. I hope that, NC area, with the starng If hunger was a contagious dis- rhetoric demands the end as Christmas Day apsalary of $40k, but I know I ease, there would be mass hys- of such bene,its. The Tea proaches, I take a minute need to be ﬂexible. As a cos- teria at the rate it’s spreading. Party, which has grown to think about those who increasingly popular in our metologist, I come in contact Just over the past six months, don’t have what I do. And state, rails about the with a variety of people who the Harvest Hope Food Bank has part of my Christmas gift “growth of the food stamp giving will include donaare in diﬀerent career ﬁelds-- seen a 42% increase in demand industry.” One commentaso I’m always networking and for services to hungry families. tor on their website states: tions to Harvest Hope geFng advice on what key In the Pee Dee Area, demand for “the system cannot inde,i- and the Heifer Project words to use when seeking food assistance increased by nitely sustain this ‘growth.’ (an international food employment and ways to en- 145%--leaving their Harvest I ask rhetorically, is the organization). It isn’t hance my resume. I don’t Hope shelves bare before American economy sup- enough—we never do really think that ﬁnding a job Thanksgiving. For their entire posed to feed all hungry enough, but it’s somewill be diﬃcult because I plan service area, a comparison of children on the face of the thing. to make myself more market- 2010 with 2008 shows a stag- globe?” (R. Gitlin, I know that many of you able than the next candidate. gering 91% increase. www.teaparty.org) who read this will also Despite the economy being Harvest Hope isn’t the only food give—to food banks, what it is, I’m determined to bank that’s scrambling to meet My answer is no, we can’t soup kitchens, and other ﬁnd a job. It just makes my needs. The Low Country Food feed all the hungry children, but we have a moral worthy charities. Maybe search a liIle more diﬃcult Bank, which serves the coastal obligation to try. And we can encourage others than usual. regions of our state, reports a shouldn’t we start with our to do the same. Because twelve-fold increase in need for My goal is to start applying food over the past ten years. It own people? Don’t we have if there’s one thing we for jobs in the social work reports that 54 percent of the a duty to feed hungry kids social workers underﬁeld in March and connect 190,000 people it serves had to in South Carolina? And stand, it’s this: if we don’t more with the people that choose between food and utili- others affected by hunger: I’ve meet through network- ties during the year, 32 percent the elderly, the disabled, do it, who will? ing. With that being said, I’m between food and rent or mort- and the disadvantaged? Have a happy, safe Holeager to start my job search! gages, and 39 percent between As I write this, we’re in the iday season! food and medical care. How middle of the Holiday seadoes someone make this choice? son. I know my Christmas dinner will include too
November-December-January 2012 The President’s Letter by Shirley Furtick, MSW, ACSW, LISW-AP/CP LMFT Happy Holiday Greetings to all! As we enjoy this special season, it is important to remember the colleagues who are no longer with us. Let us be thankful for their commitment and dedication to the profession and their pride in being professional social workers. Let us celebrate the new generation of social workers who come to us with vision and a commitment to carry the NASW SC Chapter to new heights. For those of you who want to give to a trusted cause, consider a contribution to NASW Trust in support the NASW SC Chapter. This is tax deductible. To ,ind out more contact the Chapter of,ice. NASW to Launch EAPrefer™ In South Carolina Beginning the second week in December, NASW will launch EAPrefer™ in South Carolina. EAPrefer is an exciting new benefit – solely for NASW members - that put your expertise and experience as social workers to use as Employee Assistance Professionals. By participating in EAPrefer, South Carolina NASW members can provide much-needed services to the community through the workplace, helping employees with issues ranging from substance abuse to childcare. Members have the opportunity to receive referrals from EAP network providers through a program that allows them to easily match qualified social workers with clients in need.
Happy Holidays from the NASW-SC CHAPTER STAFF (803) 256-8406 Carla Damron, LISW-CP, Exec Director firstname.lastname@example.org Juliana Palyok, Office Manager email@example.com Tonya Fishburne, SW Intern firstname.lastname@example.org
“I think this is a terrific new benefit for our members,” said Carla Damron, Executive Director for the South Carolina chapter. “Participating in EAPrefer is an excellent opportunity for our members to build their private practice or supplement their existing income, with a program tailored to fit their schedule.” EAPrefer has made it easy for members to participate by prescreening and negotiating with select EAP network providers in South Carolina to provide fair compensation. EAPrefer has also reduced much of the paperwork and administrative burden by creating an easy system for members to sign up and begin receiving referrals. To learn more about EAPrefer, requirements for participation, and to sign up please visit www.eaprefer.org or call 866-307-2325 to speak with a representative. The program launches midDecember in South Carolina.
Chapter Update 26th Annual NASW SC Chapter
Spring Symposium Silent Auc#on We are excited this year to be “dialing up” our silent aucon to include higher end items at potenally bargain prices. The Aucon is a great opportunity to raise money for our State Chapter. Please consider donang an item or solicing a local business to donate one. This year, all items must be new and have a retail value of $50 or higher. Thanks in advance for your generosity! Ideas: gi5 cerﬁcates for restaurants, salons, bed & breakfasts gi5 baskets with food/cooking themes, bath/pamper themes, etc ♦ kitchen: barware, small appliances ♦ gi5 cards (iTunes, Amazon, clothing retailers) ♦ condo/second home weekend in the mountains, at the beach ♦ ♦
If you wish to donate, contact the silent aucon chair, CharloIe Thomas at ctom2@aI.net or the chapter oﬃce at (803) 256-8406.
Save the Date: Wed, 1/18/2012 Southern Unit CEU Event Mt. Pleasant Library Training on Ethics given by Sallie Campbell
Michal Lura Friedman, daughter of Sarah L. Meadows, MSW, and stepdaughter of George Appenzeller, MSW, died in New York City on November 25, 2011 following the birth of twins. George and Sarah are long-me social workers who have worked in state government, at the university, and in private pracce. Sarah has been praccing social work in South Carolina since 1974 and George since 1975 when they graduated from the USC College of Social Work. During that me, they raised Michal along with four other children. Michal was born in Columbia, SC on August 29, 1967, where she aIended public schools and was a member of the Dreher High School Class of 1985. She resided in Columbia unl she graduated high school a5er which she aIended the University of Colorado in Boulder, CO. She was a singer-songwriter and actor, performing in many New York venues, and recorded several songs and albums and performed voice acng. She was known professionally as Michalthegirl and a paral list of her professional credits may be found at her website www.michalthegirl.com. Michal is survived by her husband, Jay Snyder and twin children Reverie Vivian Snyder and Jackson James Snyder, all of New York; mother Sarah Meadows and stepfather George Appenzeller of Columbia; father Ken Friedman, sisters Lynn Friedman and Wendy Friedman, all of Halifax, NS; sister Maitreya Rich of Los Angeles; stepbrothers MaIhew Appenzeller of Burlington, NC and Ned Appenzeller of Fairbanks, AK; and mother-inlaw Mary Ruth Snyder of Indianapolis. A memorial service was held at 4pm on Wednesday, November 30 at the Shambala Buddhist Center in New York. In lieu of ﬂowers, the family has requested that memorial donaons be made to a fund to support Michal’s husband Jay and their children. A trust is being established for the children to assist with child care and educaon expenses. Please send donaons online to www.thesnydertwins.com.
November-December-January 2012 Meet Our New Office Manager: Juliana Palyok On November 7, 2011 I received a call from Carla Damron offering me the Office Manager position for the NASW-SC Chapter. I gladly accepted and my first day was November 10. Although I was familiar with what the job entailed I wasn’t quite sure what the NASW-SC Chapter really did. I knew it was a non-profit organization and I have always wanted to work for one because I feel that they care more about people and important issues and not about making money. So after only a few short days I see that this is a non-profit that takes care of their own as well as others. Social work to me has always meant taking care of the ones who can’t care for themselves. Although this is true, social workers do more than just that. Since coming on board here I now see that their main goal is to make a difference. Not only for the less fortunate but for everyone. This profession is not for everybody it’s for the right somebody. I have now been here a month and the transition here has been predominately smooth with the exception of a few things that I have had to learn from scratch. But the help and teachings from both Carla and Stacie have made this process so much easier. I feel as if this job will be both rewarding and challenging and I’m so excited to be part of it. Over five years ago my husband and I found out we were expecting our first child and that she had spina bifida. When we heard the news there were so many emotions that came over us. We decided that the best care for her would be for me to quit my job and stay at home with her. So for over the past four years I have been a stay at home mom to our daughter and learned very quickly that being a stay at home mom is the toughest job I have ever had. Before my daughter was born, I worked for a pre-fabrication company as an administrative assistant. I really enjoyed my job there but I am very fortunate to have been able to stay at home with my daughter. After a year or so of being at home I decided that I wanted to go back to school. So I enrolled at the University of Phoenix and received my Associate in Health Administration in May 2010 and will have my bachelors in May of 2012. And after I finished my associates I worked just a few hours a week for a pediatric physical therapist helping with some of her administrative duties. And in August of this year
my daughter started 4K which gave me the opportunity to go back to work. When looking for a job I knew I wanted to work in an environment that was focused on helping people and making a difference. As a mother of a special needs child, I saw firsthand how the system works and the changes needed. And lo and behold I have found the perfect opportunity here at the NASW-SC Chapter.
Geting your Money from Insurance Companies By Judy Heath, Psychotherapist I remember when I first set up my private practice a hundred years ago. Naïve and full of energy, I figured – this will be fun! A great office downstairs in my home, a nice little waiting room and I’m in business! Oh yeah. Maybe one has to be a bit optimistic to even attempt such things. I learned everything the hard way. Today I am happy to report that I have a thriving private practice, the second one I’ve opened in my career; the first one having been in New York. I thought I’d share with my wonderful fellow Social Workers some of what I’ve learned about billing along the way. For me it was important to get a Computer Program that would help guide and organize me. At that time “Therapist Helper” was one of the only programs around, and I am still using it today. This allows me to keep track of what clients have
November-December-January 2012 Ins. Company’s cont’d. paid and what they still owe. It also produces very professional looking bills and statements. If any of you are “number phobic” (as I am), please don’t stop reading, because if I could deal with this stuff – anyone can. First off, I have always collected whatever I am owed by the client at the time of our session. I only print out bills for people who need to send them into insurance companies for reimbursement. For this reason, it is important to know the individual’s deductible and copay by the first session. You can usually find this out online. For instance, I am a Blue Cross Blue Shield provider and they have a user-friendly website on which I just enter the member information from my client and can determine whether his or her deductible has been met and how much a copay he owes for a session. If that information is not available on-line, you can call the number for Providers on the member’s insurance card. Most insurance companies give a provider at least 3 working days from when the member “is seen” in which to pre-certify. To this end, you might want to develop an Intake Sheet that the client fills out asking: Name, Address, Birthday, Phone Numbers, Insurance information etc. Also, always make a copy of the client’s card. Believe it or not, it used to be worse when I had to spend all day on hold with insurance companies – the internet has actually sped things up. I do employ a part-time bookkeeper (whose feet I kiss regularly), to bring out the big guns and chase down owed money or sit on the phone with insurance agencies when necessary. My experience with insurance companies has been that some can be confusing to navigate, especially as a beginner. Once you are in their system the reimbursement process runs smooth-
ly with continued attention to the particular provider’s requirements. There are clearly delineated service codes that reflect the particular service a therapist provides, e.g. individual therapy, family therapy, group therapy. Adherence to this simple process makes a world of difference. Additionally, careful diagnostics and treatment planning are a boon to the private practice social worker. My friend and colleague Peggy Sudol practices alongside me at The Life Guidance Center and we compare notes about new requirements and changes from insurance companies. We also share a bookkeeper who stays informed of such changes, as well as keeping track of when authorizations have expired and when re-credentialing comes due. It helps to be part of a knowledgeable and supportive team, even if you are a sole practitioner – you might consider meeting weekly with other counselors to compare notes. When I first began private practice, I was uncomfortable speaking directly to my clients about money, but I learned that although we help people, this is still a business and we must also put food on the table for our own families. People understand this, and it gets easier with time.
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NASW’s New Online CEU Provider
The PACE online fundraising tool has been officially launched! It can be found at :
There’s also a link to it from www. socialworkers. org. Please remember that all online contributions will be shared with the chapters, just like contributions we receive through membership renewals. So it’s in our interest to promote the new online fundraising capability.
CEUSchool’s goal is to provide you with quality on-line course content in a format that is convenient to use, affordable, and relevant for today's social worker. Their site offers fully accredited NASW classes that meet all of your CEU needs. You will receive the same academic benefits that you would enjoy at an onsite facility, along with the flexibility and self-paced learning that comes with an online education. Register with CEUSchool through NASW South Carolina and you will automatically receive 3 FREE credits !!
We love your stories! NASW SC encourages everyone to contribute noteworthy information for Chapter Update. All material should be typed and emailed to the Chapter Office. Chapter Update is published by the National Association of Social Workers South Carolina Chapter. Advertisement space and fees: 1/4 page, 1/2 page, full page: $125. Members seeking employment may advertise at no cost. Rental of membership labels is available for a one-time user fee of $95 plus S&H. Position vacancies may be advertised at a flat rate of $25 (not to exceed 15 lines). Members may run camera ready business card ads for $20. SC NASW reserves the right to accept, reject or edit advertisements and notices of events based on publication schedule, space limitations and appropriateness. The views expressed in Chapter Update do not necessarily represent positions of NASW. Because of the commitment of NASW to nondiscriminatory personnel practices, advertisers in NASW publications, by action of the NASW Board of Directors, must affirm that they are equal opportunity employers. For violations of professional ethics or personnel practices, a person may file a complaint with the NASW SC Chapter Committee on Inquiry. For information, write the Chapter Office at 2537 Gervais Street, Columbia SC 29204 or call 803-256-8406. For information regarding: Social work licensure, call or write the Board of Social Work Examiners, PO Box 11329, Columbia,