More than 135 of UJ’s second year social work students took a pledge that “they will adhere to the ethics and values that govern the profession in their social work practicums.”
The Department of Social Work at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) held an oath-taking ceremony on 22 February at the Auckland Park campus. The ceremony was intended for second year students before they embark on their social work practicums and internships.
According to Professor Adrian van Breda, Head of the Social Work Department at the University of Johannesburg (UJ), “This ceremony is second in importance only to the students’ graduation in three years’ time. It is the moment where we permit them to participate in the social work profession, by providing social work services to real clients and communities facing real life challenges.”
The ceremony was graced by the attendance of Social Work Masters students from Erfurt University of Applied Sciences in Germany. The keynote speaker was UJ’s Prof Farid Esack, Head of Religion Studies, and his address was around the need to confront the overarching structures that perpetuate the poverty and suffering of many South Africans.
Prof van Breda congratulated and thanked the students for their choice of profession and explained the importance of the role of the social work profession in society. “Social work is a profession committed to working with those who are most vulnerable and marginalised. It is a sacred responsibility, requiring great compassion and impeccable ethics”.
Present was also Ms Marina Greyvenstein from the SA Council for Social Services Professions (SACSSP), Social Work Department staff members, Ms Buyisiwe Mkhonza (a former student) and student guests from all over the country.
The event is a ceremonial occasion where students formally receive their registration certificates from the SA Council for Social Services Professions (SACSSP). As part of the ceremony, academic awards were awarded to the eight best students of 2015. Book vouchers were generously donated to these awardees by Juta Books.