Cynthia Sewell – Mi’gmaq/Maliseet Bachelor of Social Work

St. Thomas University

Returning to the University as a mature student was both exciting and challenging. I remember…

My name is Cynthia Sewell from the Pabineau First Nation and I am a recent graduate of 2011 from the Mi’gmaq/Maliseet Bachelor of Social Work program at St. Thomas University in Fredericton NB. I can not express enough how “fortunate” I feel to have had the opportunity to accomplish my dream of obtaining a Bachelor of Social Work Degree with a concentration in Indigenous Studies from St. Thomas University. This opportunity made obtaining the BSW even more profound and meaningful to me as I accomplished my academic goals. I was able to receive an academic degree in studies that related to me and our beautiful First Nations communities I live in.

I had started my academic career in the early 1990’s and had put it on hold for a while to return to my wonderful First Nation community where I worked and started my family; all the while continuing to take courses part time at university. In 2009 the opportunity presented itself to me to Study full time with St. Thomas University through the Mi’gmaq Bachelor of Social Work Program and I knew I had found the academic studies and background I was looking for in my career.

Returning to University as a mature student was both exciting and challenging. I remember thinking some nights “why did’nt I do this earlier”, because balancing studies, family and work presented a lot of “stressful” moments for me over the three years…lol! The one thing though I was so grateful for and truly blessed in receiving was that I did not have to do everything alone. So many wonderful family, Elders, faculty and friends were “there” to support me and my son Sipu as I completed my studies. The saying no man is an Island I learnt is really true. Everyone’s wonderful support is what helped me achieve my academic dreams. I would like to take the opportunity in this write up to say Thank You to everyone in my life whose been there for me and my son.

Since graduating on July 13, 2011 from St. Thomas University, I am now excited and happy to have begin my social work career with Elsipogtog First Nation as an Eastern Door Coordinator within their Health Center. This truly has been a “dream that has come true for me” and I encourage everyone to reach for your dreams, and complete your educational goals because it is reachable and you can do it!