I was born and raised in Madison, WI and I’m a proud alumni of the University of Wisconsin. I have lived in Florida for 7 years near my oldest son, but I travel home to Madison a lot to see my mom, sister, and youngest son. Family is very important and I love and adore mine. I’m a huge sports fan and fall is my favorite time of year because its football season! My favorite activity to relax and enjoy self-care is a walk on the beach collecting sea shells, visiting friends, and playing with my cats and dogs. My favorite volunteer endeavors were coaching Special Olympians and coaching competition cheer leading.
I am currently a retired police officer. I was blessed to have several careers. My first job was with Wisconsin Special Olympics and then for the University of Wisconsin for 14 years in several roles: UW Athletics fund raising, UW Police Officer, and UW Safety Trainer. My passion for helping people and their causes lead me to the University of Southern California (USC) and the School of Social Work. I’m in my 6th of 8 semesters of grad school and I’m loving my internship with the SISGI Group. I’m excited to be associated with Social Work Helper and Deona Hooper this semester and to write and educate other social workers on important social issues.
On July 19th I will be hosting my first Twitter Chat (#AlsoSW) with the help of Thenera and Deona.
In order to get to know Kathern better, we asked her some questions:
#1 What is your area of focus as a SISGI intern?
Transitional housing and more shelters for the homeless population and preventing homelessness for victims of domestic violence. Permanent sustainable housing and care for the homeless population with mental health issues.
#2 Describe your most interesting or challenging assignment during your internship?
My upcoming Twitter Chat in July. I’m still getting accustomed to social media and the technology that comes along with that.
#3 Name one thing you like(d) about the SISGI Group intern experience?
The ability to choose a focus area that I am passionate about and work on deliverables in that area.
#4 What would be your dream job?
To make a documentary to raise awareness on a social issue and then actually effect the change.
#5 What has been your greatest learning experience while interning with SISGI Group?
The long term commitment it takes to effect sustainable solutions and change.
#6 What is one thing that surprised you about working with a virtual internship?
The sense of oneness that comes across when working on deliverables and group projects. It’s hard to imagine that you could get that sense of teamwork from looking into a camera on a computer, but you can. Thenera’s passion for social justice and social change comes through the computer screen and is inspiring!
#7 Name one interesting fact about yourself that you would like to share.
I have opened my home up many times in the past 20 years as temporary shelter when the need has been there.
#8 How do you plan to use the knowledge you’ve gained from this internship in your career?
I plan to use my knowledge to continue to raise awareness about the marginalized through the use of documentation and documentaries and do my part to improve their quality of life.