Part-Time Program Instructor Spotlight: Heidi Frank

Our Part-Time Program offers classes on Saturdays in Madison or Eau Claire, and features practical experience field placements and faculty who are dedicated professional social workers. This is one in a series of Instructor Spotlights.

 Heidi Frank What is your social work background?

I have a Bachelor’s of Social Work degree from the University of Oshkosh (go Titans!) and a Master’s of Social Work from the College of St. Catherine/University of St. Thomas. I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and have certificates in Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR) and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy Intensively Trained (DBT).


Describe your current position in the field?

Currently I am a field instructor in the Part-Time MSW program at UW-Madison in the Eau Claire site. I have been in this teaching position for five years. I also work full-time at Mayo Clinic, Eau Claire as a psychotherapist. I have been at this position for 11 years. I have been a social worker since 1999.


What are the challenges you experience in your position?

The biggest challenge I face in the Part-Time Program is managing the needs of the program with the demands of the student work-school-life roles. The Part-Time Program is an excellent way to reach higher education with the demands of family and work, however, it is a commitment for the students to balance. The challenge then I face is helping them manage all their roles while giving them the best education from UW-Madison.


What is rewarding about the work you do?

The most rewarding part of this work for me is GRADUATION day and seeing all the students with what they have accomplished and seeing their proud families. It warms my heart to see how proud family and loved ones are of their hard work. I love graduation day!


What do you think is the best aspect of the Part-Time Program?

The best aspect of the Part-Time Program is the energy and excitement about learning and social justice changes. Personally, I get reenergized when I come to campus and witness the work of the students and their dedication and passion to social work clients and values.


What do you like to do in your spare time?

In my spare time I love reading, travelling, movies and spending time with my children. I also love researching and spending time thinking of my next vacation. Any words of advice to pass on to aspiring social workers? The biggest piece of advice would be to focus on a way to “care safely.” Burnout and vicarious trauma can be consequences of working with individuals, groups, and families that are oppressed and traumatized. Taking care of yourself and learning how to care for others without it impacting you negatively is a crucial development in your work as a social worker.

Leave a comment

Last edited by jmlee29 on Friday, December 15, 2017 | Printer Friendly Version