Class Year: May 2024
Degree Program: MSW On-Campus
Concentration: Adult Mental Health
Name of Summer Job/Organization: Open Sky Wilderness Therapy and Restorative Solutions, both in Colorado
When considering how he’d spend his summer, Seth Rose found two opportunities related to his interests in counseling, community mediation and culture building. He is alternating work in two-week increments as a wilderness therapist high up in the Colorado Rocky Mountains with an internship focused on restorative justice education.
Now in his fourth summer with Open Sky Wilderness Therapy, Rose leads “off-the-grid” adventures to help adolescent and young adult clients who are struggling with various life circumstances to grow and heal by building awareness and self-esteem through mindfulness, improved communication skills and dynamic therapeutic interventions. A goal is to help students identify their values and learn to make choices that reflect their own values rather than those imposed externally.
“As a guide, I reflect to them how their current behaviors may or may not align with these values and impact others,” Rose said. “The work is rooted in mutual respect and understanding and it creates a powerful process in rewiring narratives, unconscious behaviors and communication skills.”
Rose is balancing that role with an internship at Restorative Solutions, an organization that develops restorative justice curriculum and training for universities looking to establish a “culture of care” which places high importance on relationships within the institution and systems of justice.
“Community is seen as the foundation of justice and thus restorative justice circles include mentors, elders, teachers, friends, victims and perpetrators,” he said. “I am helping to lay out a strategic framework and process for colleges by adapting the curriculum and language currently aimed at educators and administrators toward accommodating social workers.”
When Rose returns to campus in August, he said he is looking forward to continuing his work through an internship with the Cuyahoga County Fatherhood Initiative—a program that encourages fathers to maintain an active role in raising their children—before graduating in May.
“I hope to further develop and apply my learning of the structure and architecture of rites of passage and intergenerational community development within an intercultural urban setting,” he said.