Fueling her passion for mental health and social justice: MSW student Becca Reymann

msw student becca reymann smiling in front of a mountain lake

As a concentration-year master’s student in Colorado State University’s School of Social Work, Becca Reymann (she/her) is expanding her qualifications in mental health, especially within the context of social justice. “Though I entered this program with the intention of becoming a therapist with an interest solely in micro-level work,” said Reymann, “I am feeling more passionate than ever about also doing work on a more macro-level, to change the oppressive policies and systems that create the suffering we see on a micro-level.”

Read more in our interview with Reymann about her experiences in CSU’s Master of Social Work program:

What sparked your interest in social work?

“I was originally drawn to social work because of my passion for both mental health and social justice work. I am being trained to become a therapist in a place that is rooted in social justice and advocacy. I appreciate learning about how the macro systems trickle down and impact everything on a mezzo and micro level. CSU’s MSW program is helping me zoom out and gain perspective on how the social issues we see day-to-day have come to be and how, as social workers, we can work to make lasting change.”

What are your academic and research interests?

“I am taking a full load of classes, engaging in 20-25 hours a week of internship, and have a position as a graduate research assistant (GRA). For my internship, I work at CSU Health Network, where I facilitate group and individual therapy, as well as participate in outreach and weekly training seminars. I cannot speak highly enough about CSU Health Network and its training program for emerging therapists!”

“I am also a GRA working alongside Dr. Shannon Hughes. Dr. Hughes’ work focuses largely on alternatives to traditional mental health. I will be helping support her in the development of a new peer support program and the expansion of an existing CriticalThinkRX program—a curriculum that encourages providers and community members to think critically about psychotropic drug use.  I am extremely grateful to be working alongside a professor whose research and mission I feel incredibly aligned with.”

How do you stay motivated in your degree program?

“Staying motivated in school can feel difficult, especially considering the world we are living in today. What helps me stay motivated is remembering what a gift and privilege it is to be here, and checking in on why I am doing this work to maintain perspective—then I remember I LOVE learning this material.”

“It also helps to get outside often, prioritize self-care needs, and lean on my cohort members. The professors and staff members in the School of Social Work are open to feedback, willing to work with us, and encourage self-care, which creates a safety net of support and care within the program.”

What advice do you have for prospective MSW students?

“My advice is to lean on your cohort. CSU’s small cohort size for the MSW program has really enriched my learning experience. It has allowed me to really get to know and learn from my professors and classmates alike in a way that feels incredibly unique. I consider my cohort to be some of my greatest teachers. I have absolutely loved my experience here so far—the small cohort size, engaging classes, incredible professors, and expansive internship opportunities have exceeded my expectations.”