From a family of educators arises Micaela Jones—emerging social worker. This graduating senior originally thought she would continue the “Jones legacy” as a teacher until she began student teaching and realized that many times, the “home prevented students from being able to thrive in the classroom.” Couple that with a heart for justice, and it became clear that social work was the correct path for Micaela to pursue so that she could impact change at a larger systemic level. It was this passion that earned Micaela the title of BSW Outstanding Student of the year!
When she looks around at the world around her, Micaela sees the lack of empathy and compassion as a barrier to communities thriving. As a Black Mexican American woman, Micaela has seen the consequences of racism, sexism, and xenophobia, and has a desire to see “fairness, justice, and equality” shine through the darkness. She sees it as her mission to enact change so that other people don’t have to struggle in the same ways that she did growing up.
It only makes sense that her friends characterize her as “comforting” and “welcoming.” The relationships that she’s created have provided Micaela the space to be vulnerable and open-minded to the perspectives of others.
Throughout her college career, Micaela has relied on her family, friends, and the community that she has built during her time at Baylor to balance the stress of class, work, and navigating a global pandemic that began during her freshman year.
Micaela has an outstanding capacity for critical thinking, organization, and clear communication. She has a passion for the profession and its core values, yet she is able to be prudent and teachable at the same time. She has made every classroom environment better, modeling responsible work ethic and initiative for her peers.
“Do the best that you can in the moment, that’s all you can ask of yourself.” This is the message that Micaela’s mother often told her, and it is something that has helped her move through the school’s rigorous program. She has learned how to resist her perfectionist tendencies and view her self-worth in relation to who she is over the grades that she can produce.
This balanced view of herself as a whole helps Micaela to show up better to her internship placement at Meals on Wheels Waco. It was here that Micaela engaged with clients and assess their eligibility for the program. This field placement has given her the tools to support the “wholistic well-being of the client” instead of only focusing on one specific issue.
Micaela also served as a Line Camp and Welcome Week leader for the past two years and has helped incoming students as they learn what it means to be a Baylor Bear. She understands how intimidating college can be and knowing that she was a source of peace for those entering a new environment is what she is most proud of.
As one of her professors puts it, “Micaela has an outstanding capacity for critical thinking, organization, and clear communication. She has a passion for the profession and its core values, yet she is able to be prudent and teachable at the same time. She has made every classroom environment better, modeling responsible work ethic and initiative for her peers.”
As Micaela prepares to graduate and pursue her Masters of Science in Social work at the University of Texas at Austin this fall, she encourages those that come behind her to utilize the relationships that her cohort and professors have to offer. She noted just how many resources and assets these individuals have to offer that can make this seemingly overwhelming process that much easier. She also encourages others to enjoy college and have fun!
"As difficult as it can be to balance all of your responsibilities, it is important to find joy during the process," Micaela said.
Congratulations, Micaela! We are so proud of the work you have done and the work you will still yet do. #sicem