Mount St. Joseph University

A Helping Hand: Mount Graduate Lives Out Career in Social Service Work

Behavioral and Natural Sciences, Social Work, Sociology, Alumni

By: Amanda Gratsch

With a commitment to equality and social justice, Rachel Stone, ’96 has worked primarily in the social service field and helping professions since receiving her bachelor’s in Sociology with a minor in Criminal Justice at the Mount.

Stone chose the Mount due to its reputation in the community and individual recommendations from other friends who chose to study here, as well as the smaller class sizes, and high professor-to-student ratios.  When choosing a program, Stone was lucky enough to have a professor at the Mount who recognized that she would be a good fit for social service work, and recommended that she seek an internship at Women Helping Women.

“Due to the small class sizes and having opportunities for professors to truly evaluate my strengths was an amazing benefit of the Mount, and was instrumental in leading me in the direction of this work,” says Stone.

In addition, the Mount’s commitment to service work and community projects in general was inspiring to her. It was truly the personal and close-knit nature of study and teacher/student relationships that allowed her passion to be recognized and ultimately realized. “I honestly believe that I was meant to do this work. However, it was primarily compelled by a Mount professor recognizing my potential to do it.”

Since graduation, Stone started at Women Helping Women, assisting survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault for seven years before working to provide counseling services to juvenile offenders at the Hamilton County Youth Center. She worked as a Research Associate at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, assisting physicians in Adolescent Medicine, and later worked as a Grant Coordinator for a Juvenile Drug Court treatment program.

Stone currently works for the Family Nurturing Center as a Clinical Facilitator. In addition to supervising visits between non-custodial parents and their children, she provides daily supervision to ten facilitators. “We provide a safe, supportive environment for visitation for adults working towards custody and reunification with their children,” says Stone. “As a supervisor, I provided one-on-one guidance, support and coaching for our staff.”

The most recent change Stone has seen in her field involves the increase in substance use, specifically heroin, and how it is affecting families. She notes that social work as a career means more than simply wanting to help people. While that is a large part of it, it also sometimes means being challenged by limitations in how you can be helpful. She recommends this highly rewarding work to anyone committed to social justice and equality.

“I can’t say enough great things about the Mount. My educational experience was top notch, and I highly recommend it to everyone for personal attention you receive. My niece just applied to social work at the Mount, and I’m thrilled to support her as she pursues this at my favorite learning institution.”

Click here to learn more about the Mount's Sociology program.