Celebrating and Honoring the Profession: Heidi Frank MSW, LCSW

Social Work Month Highlight

Meet Heidi Frank (she/her) MSW, LCSW

Headshot of Heidi Frank
Heidi Frank

Thank you for this opportunity to highlight social workers for SW month. My name is Heidi Frank, MSW, LCSW and my pronouns are she/her. I have been a social worker since 1999.  My desire to be a social worker started at UW-Oshkosh in 1995. Since then I have worked in a variety of social work settings and in 2005 got my Master’s degree from St Catherine/St Thomas in St Paul, MN. Currently I work at local hospital as an Integrated Behavioral Health therapist working in primary care. This role has helped me bring mental health services to those seeking support quickly, with evidenced based therapy to help manage depression, anxiety, trauma, and any other needed support patients may have. To have mental health services in primary care has been life changing for some. There is less stigma and ability to coordinate care with providers to get the best possible support for patients needing support. In addition to this current position, I have worked in preschool mental health day treatment, inpatient psychiatric unit, outpatient behavioral health clinic, domestic abuse centers, and partial hospitalizations. Social work has so many opportunities to connect with clients and change/influence outcomes on a macro level as well.

What inspired you to become a social worker?
This is a funny question because I went off to college with the goal of being an accountant. My kids laugh at this because I have had to stop helping them with their math homework around 3rd grade. At UW-Oshkosh, everyone had to take a diversity class for a requirement for graduation. One of the entry-level social work classes filled this requirement so I took it. When the professor was discussing the social work model, ethics, principle, etc. I felt so aligned with what she said. I connected with everything she talked about. After class, I went to talk with her and she encouraged me to take another social work class.  Since 1995 I have been in love with social work.

What class(s) do you currently teach for UW Madison? 
I have taught at UW-Madison in the PTP MSW program since the first field mental health unit. It started as a part-time job, however, turned into a career that I have loved. My favorite day of course is graduation day and seeing the students reach their goals and dreams. The energy that new social workers brought to me in this career with this position has kept me excited and eager to keep learning myself. Thank you to all the current and past students for keeping me energized and passionate about social justice and supporting those that need support.

Thank you Heidi for all your contributions to the social work profession and the Sandra Rosenbaum School of Social Work!

Thanks to Michelle Helmer, MSW, LGSW, Eau Claire Site Director, Part-Time MSW Program for organizing this series celebrating social workers!