I Was Challenged In a Healthy Way

marianne whitaker

When I turned 40, I panicked and really thought hard about what I wanted to achieve in my life. The passion had been exhausted from my career at that time, so I quit my job and then I panicked again.
I walked into Sprott Shaw in January 2012 and met Phil. I sat down with him and I said, “I want to work with children or adults who have been diagnosed with autism.” Phil replied “I have just the course for you.” I wasn’t convinced as nowhere on the course outline did it specifically say “Autism”.

So, I panicked again and bombarded Phil with questions about the course and what if I change my mind and want to go in a different direction and not limit myself. Phil replied calmly “that’s why this course would be great for you ,as you will learn so many skills as well as everything you need for the field of Autism.”

Mmmmm, now I was intrigued.

Panic set in once again, so I called Phil and asked him “what if I can’t pass the exams? What if I need help?” I’m sure at this point Phil was thinking that I had serious self-esteem issues, but he didn’t say anything to indicate this. He calmly replied “the teachers and all the staff are here to guide you and help you through this course.” So, I signed on the dotted line and started the Community Support Worker – Social Services in March 2012.
Phil was right. The teachers and staff were great and without their knowledge and encouragement, I don’t know how I would have coped. I was challenged in a healthy way and learned so much about helping others. I expanded my mind and also learned so many new and exciting things about myself. My confidence grew and by the time I went onto practicum, I was raring to go out on my own.

Whilst on practicum at Little Steps Therapy Services, they offered me a position as a Behavioral Interventionist and now I work with children who have been diagnosed with Autism.

It’s amazing and guess what? No more panicking!

Marianne W.
Victoria Campus
Community Support Worker – Social Services

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