Social Worker

The social worker I shadowed was at a major hospital Toronto. Basically, she helps patients and families work through the challenges of life and assesses which services the patient may need.

Before the day begins, just like a clinical dietitian and speech pathologist, a social worker meets with doctors, nurses, and other hospital staff for team rounds. During the rounds a doctor may tell a speech pathologist that a patient needs to be seen and the social worker may update the group saying what the patient’s future plans are.

After team rounds, the social worker I shadowed sees the patients she is responsible for (her caseload). I couldn’t sit in on any of her meetings due to the serious nature of her work, but from what she told me the work sounds really emotionally draining. Of course it is also extremely rewarding, but I think I would burnout from dealing with so many sensitive problems. 

A Typical Day

A social worker working at a hospital learns about what patients need her services during team rounds and then counsels clients later that day.

Top 3 Perks

1) Rewarding work

2) Exposure to people in different ethnic groups 

3) Everyday poses new issues

Job Culture

Indoors, assessing services for clients, meeting with clients, emotionally draining work, making recommendations to doctors and other hospital staff


1) Complete a Bachelor of Social Work 

- Many employers prefer an applicant with a master’s degree in the field as well

Skills Needed

Communication, people skills, problem solving, flexibility

The Field

- The industry relies on government funding

- Technology has no affect but new ideas are changing and influencing the field