OUTfromUNDERit

~ where today's headlines start to make sense ~
in a most unexpected way

ABOUT ME

A funny thing happened as I perused my Facebook pages... Amongst all the fun and laughter, photos and music, my eyes caught hold of a national phenomena. Perhaps it's like the "Arab Spring" where this form of social media has shed light on a society simply through shared discussion.  Once I realized what I was seeing, I t took me some time to get my bearings. Starting this website and blog could be the best vehicle for an open discussion on what Seems to be on a lot of Americans' mind. I think the one question that we should be asking ourselves is "What is it that shapes our understanding of the world and it's inhabitants?"
Although the following news items and any possible discussions they could ignite may not feel suitable for the faint hearted; I still believe we all need to take an honest look at how we came to understand ourselves as a nation and as people. It's fairly simple, yet extremely important...... Name for yourself the sources of information which you rely upon to build your perception of America and think about which piece of that information now influences your thought processes? (ie Where can I travel, who can I trust in my community, who could be life threatening, where are the good paying jobs, does it make sense to buy a gun now, and are illegal immigrants really living off the taxes I pay?)  My hope is to take this opportunity to shed light on the possible truths and untruths of our national understanding and at the same time encourage a long overdue review of who we are as individuals and as a nation.  
BIO
WORK EXPERIENCE

There's not much else to say other than to say that my hopes are for visitors to use this site to explore other possibilities for the narrative of our lives.

 

Perhaps this venue can elicite a change in our overall social conscious. Over the long run a shift in our awareness could change things for the better in both the country and the world. 

 

One can only hope. 

 

23
Years
Benefits Eligibility and Referral Social Worker
Since 1993 I have worked as a Social Worker at The Department of Transitional Assistance (Formerly known as The Welfare Office). Throughout the years I have witnessed many changes to the program, both at the State and Federal levels. Some changes I see as being welcomed and needed; while others, not so much. 
5
Years
Federal Action Office
V.I.S.T.A. Program
VISTA stands for Volunteers In Service To America. As a paid program developer my job was to research a need in a given community and to develop a program with which to help meet that need. Each site needed to develop it's mission statement, coordinate an advisory board made up of leaders in the community, hire and train volunteers. You could say that the VISTA Program is a Domestic Peace. Corps in a sense. 
54
Years
Aside from all that...
My life is that of a musician, painter, mother, and grandmother. Since I can remember, I've always had a curiosity for finding the origins of any given individual's perception of our country and on a larger scale, the world. Major events like the assasination of JFK , Robert Kennedy, MLK, and Malcoln X .....The Vietnam War and war protestors.....The four unarmed students shot at Kent State by Federal Marshall's for protesting the war......The resignation of President Nixon amid allegations of illegal activities.....every one of these events occurred as I was just able to use abstract thinking. These events alone should give us cause to question what we know about ourselves. I'm hoping this venue can be a catalyst for just such an undertaking. 
 
EDUCATION
1989 - 1993
Springfield College
School of Human Services
 
The School of Human Services was acquired by Springfield College in Central Massachusetts in 1991. Prior to that the campuses were part of and located at New Hampshire College in Hookset and Manchester, New. Hampshire. 
 
When I began my studies at The School of Human Services, I had already been working for The Federal Action Office VISTA Program located in Boston, Massachusetts for 3 years. 
 
At at this point, I had already been active in the research and development of community based human service programs for several years. After speaking with a work colleague I decided to take the opportunity to expand my knowledge of the human service field and to legitimize my hands-on knowledge with a Bachelors degree in the field of Human Services Administration. I knew at this point in life I wanted to be sure I had the right tools and know-how. In addition, I had better have proof of some marketable credentials. I was legitimately surprised at how much I learned while working on my Bachelors Degree. The education was, as they say, "outside the box" in terms of critical thinking skills. I learned more about how to learn than at any other time in my life. The course was material was unusually insightful, not reliant an old and stagnant mind numbing textbook. We studied everything from Urban Development to Hospice Care to The AIDS epidemic and beyond. Every class I took I was interested to see what I'd be learning. I was working full-time and had a young daughter and at the end of the day I actually looked forward to my studies. I found out at some point that the teaching methods for this school were based on the Philosophy of Brazilian Educator Paulo Freire. His methods touched on so many aspects of how to impart knowledge. His focus was to ensure that ones eagerness to learn and their ability  to question what they've learned might stay with the student for a lifetime. He has written numerous books on the subject of Education. His work is well worth the read.