Social Work Graduate continues career Success at GVSU
November 29, 2017
Elisa Salazar, a former student in the Master of Science in Social Work, has found her dream job as a work life consultant at GVSU. Elisa said “it is so amazing to be able to come back to the campus that really shaped my career”. She graduated in 2010 with a Masters of Social Work from GVSU.
As a work life consultant within the Human Resources department at GVSU, Elisa uses her background and experiences from previous positions to assist in conflict resolution processes, individualized coaching, and connecting faculty and staff to community resources. Elisa works in the benefits and wellness sector of Human Resources and she “gets to think strategically and creatively about ways to support the well-being and mental health of faculty and staff”. Currently, Elisa is working on developing mindfulness trainings and programming.
Elisa is a fully licensed Masters level Social Worker. She has experience counseling traumatized children, couples, families, and people with disabilities. Elisa has worked with adults battling severe mental illness and she has special training using a therapeutic approach while working with people facing borderline personality disorder. The therapeutic approach training has “really shaped me as a professional and personally”.
Elisa is a first generation college student, and the first in her family to earn a Masters degree. She appreciated Grand Valley’s clear and concise process with staff and faculty. “Whether it be admissions, financial aid, the bookstore, or the PSS at the social work office there is an enormous amount of support and patience.”
Elisa has been a mental health and substance abuse counselor for seven years now. The advanced generalist social work path that Elisa completed at GVSU prepared her for success in a variety of settings with diverse groups of people. Elisa further developed her skills in a position in California after she graduated from the program. She spent a year and half doing wrap-around home based services for severely abused children and gang entrenched youth. Elisa learned new treatment approaches which advanced her skillset as a clinician. Elisa then accepted a leadership role as Associate Director of Residential Services for three group homes for teenagers with substance abuse issues. Elisa made the decision to move back to Michigan to be closer to her family, and continued her career working with children and adults who were referred by child protective services and the Michigan Department of Corrections. All of these experiences have lead Elisa to her current position at GVSU as a work life consultant.
Congratulations to Elisa on all her success!