Meet Adreanne Dugger

A Heart for Those Grieving Leads to Social Work
MSW student finds social work to be the perfect foundation for career in therapy
Adreanne Dugger Advocate

Growing up, Adreanne Dugger had not planned on studying social work. It just wasn't something she thought of as part of the path she wanted to pursue. She dreamed of becoming a counselor or a therapist, so, naturally, she majored in psychology as an undergraduate at Baylor. Little did she know a degree in social work would truly be the helping profession she had long-been attracted to as a child.

Although she knew she wanted to help people, it wasn't until after her father died during her freshman year that she felt the calling on her heart to support those who are grieving. She thought that meant following the path of psychology. However, during the last semester of her undergrad career, she learned that a master's degree in social work would provide a great foundation for therapy. She began praying about it her last semester and took an internship at the Department of Veterans Affairs. She was encouraged when a representative from the school of social work came to speak with her. She later received an information packet from the school and saw that psychotherapy and counseling were the first careers on the list for social work. The rest, as they say, is history!

Divine guidance

"Day one of [social work] classes, I thought, 'Thank you God, this is exactly where I need to be,'" she said.

Adreanne believed God was leading her toward the career she longed for, and was being faithful when she was unsure of what direction to go. She also saw God's provision and guidance in her decision to obtain her MSW when she was awarded the Willis Family Scholarship, just one of many scholarships the Baylor School of Social Work offers its students.

"I wouldn't be here, if I hadn't been awarded a scholarship," she said.

Adreanne now interns at the Mental Health Mental Retardation Center where she works under the intake social worker. She helps with intakes and diagnosis by asking patients about their background, family and school experiences. Through this she determines if patients are eligible for the program and if the services at the center will help them.

A future of hope and healing

After Adreanne graduates, she plans to do psychotherapy and counseling, possibly specializing in grief counseling. She also hopes to research actions you can take in grief counseling that would be beneficial. Currently, she is assessing needs that currently aren't being met in the grieving process.

"I want to stay involved in the community, and maybe do a community grief group for free," she said, noting that many of these groups cost money that individuals might not have. Adreanne hopes to help others realize that even while grieving, they can make it through school or make it through their workday and eventually make it through their hardships, and to help bring comfort to them. Her ultimate goal is to do so while sharing the love of Christ through loving people.