“PEOPLE ALWAYS TOLD ME THAT I’M NOT GOING TO MAKE MONEY IN THE FIELD OF SOCIAL WORK, BUT IT TURNS OUT THAT I ACTUALLY AM. AND FURTHERMORE, IT MAKES ME HAPPY.”
University of New Hampshire
Title: Connect Program Coordinator
College: University of New Hampshire
Major: Social Work
First Job: Teach for America
Current Salary: $45,000-$60,000
After starting his career as a teacher/learning specialist, Andres returned to his alma mater of UNH to put his degree in Social Work to use. In the admissions office and the Connect Program, he found fulfillment working with under-represented students. At UNH, Andres was excited to discover that he could find not just happiness, but also financial success and stability in the field of social work!
What experience in college helped you get to where you are today?
I came to UNH thinking that I was going to study political science, but I realized political science wasn't my thing. I wanted to do something that would allow me to work with people from underrepresented backgrounds. Because of this I decided to study social work. I knew that whatever job I had in the future had to be working with people and paying it forward.
Who is a work mentor you admire and why?
In high school my guidance counselor was a huge mentor of mine. We still keep in touch today. Even at times when I thought I wanted to give up, she made sure I stayed involved and kept going. She’s one of the biggest reasons I ended up going to college.
What’s the best advice you ever got from a work mentor?
My mom always told me to do whatever makes me happy. People always told me that I’m not going to make money in the field of social work, but it turns out that I actually am. And furthermore, it makes me happy. So there’s a lot of good that has come out of it.
What advice would you give to a college student looking to build a career as a problem solver?
I tell people that it will be hard work, but you have to do what makes you happy. Whatever you study, don't feel like you have to go to a specific job because of that. The skills you take out of what you learn in college are very important, and they can be used in multiple places.
What drew you to work in the social sector?
Being in the social sector allows me to help others and not only myself. As I move myself forward, I can move others forward with me. I think you have to realize that we all need help to move forward together, because no one can do something on their own.