News Release

Social Work Grads Celebrate the Journey

The fellowship born of learning and striving together was evident as seven social work graduates celebrated with classmates, professors, and family members on Friday, May 16, during the department’s Senior Celebration.

“We have seen you grow and develop as social work professionals,” said Dr. Mackenzi Huyser ’98, assistant professor of social work, addressing her outgoing students and recounting their service and accomplishments over the past years. “Thank you for letting us walk with you on your journey.”

Graduating seniors in the social work program are:

  • Kristin Bolan of Brookfield, Wisconsin
  • Andrea Dieleman of Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • Stephanie Gill of Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • Mallory Hansen of Roseville, Minnesota
  • Jennifer Havenaar of Kalamazoo, Michigan
  • Heidi Jansen of Elgin, Illinois
  • Rianne Veenstra of Pella, Iowa

Bolan, Havenaar, and Hansen offered reflections of their experience in the program and the bonds they formed with each other and their professors.

Hansen pointed out the qualities of each of her classmates; the godly attitude and strength of Dr. Rose Malinowski, associate professor of social work; and the shaping influence of Huyser.

“Thank you for setting an example,” Hansen said to her. “We will be better social workers because of you and the social work program.”

Chaplain Bill Van Groningen offered a meditation and blessing, and at the close of the ceremony, each student received a bouquet of roses to pass out to family and friends who had supported them during their journey from student to social worker.

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