My Journey – Engineer to Social Worker

Hi everyone –

This has been a long time coming, and the journey hasn’t always been easy, but I am really excited to announce that for the next two years I will be working towards my Masters in Social Work at Aurora University!

I will be a full-time student, working part-time, and interning part-time.

This has been a long journey, and for all those who are trying to figure out their lives, just know that sometimes it takes awhile for His plan to fully present itself.  

I realized about two years into my undergraduate degree that I did not want to be an engineer.  But I pushed through, thinking I would find something within it that satisfied me, or I would attempt to get a double major.  I was half-way through it anyways, how hard could it be?

Well….doing something you are not passionate about, quickly leads to unsatisfaction.  I remember interviewing for countless engineering internships, thinking “I am lying to myself and everyone I interview with, and they can tell that my passion isn’t there.”

It was years of this.  And it felt like it would go on forever.

Until… I was interviewing for my internship as a MSW student, and for the first time in my life, my smile came easy, my excitement could barely be contained, and I did not have to lie to myself or others.  I was being the authentic me, and for the first time in a long time, it was confirmed that I was exactly where I needed to be.

Again, my journey has been a long one, but God’s path is SO good and satisfying.  Trust in the journey, Trust in Him.  There will be doubt… so much doubt.  And honestly, there is no easy way to get through it, then to remind yourself (constantly) that He has a plan.  A perfect plan.  And even when you are “lost”, He knows exactly where you are going.

I will be beginning classes the last week of August.  By the grace of God, I was able to obtain an internship with the Children’s Advocacy Center within two weeks, where I will be advocating for children (ages 3-17) who have been through trauma, such as domestic abuse.  I will get to have experience with group therapy session and by the end of the year long internship, I will get my own case load to work through.

Social work is a career of fighting for those who cannot fight for themselves.  When I think back to my ungrad application those exact words were said, “I want to be the voice for those who do not have a voice.  I want to help those who cannot help themselves.”  I thought that would be through engineering, obviously it was not!  I may never understand why I had to take certain turns, but I know it has made me the person I am today.  Someone who is ready to fight for others and to stand up for what her true dreams are.

In two years, I will have my dream career of working as a counselor with high schoolers to help them face the challenges within their lives.  I have seen first-hand how the choices an adolescent makes can change their lives forever.  I want to help the young adults of our nation make life choices that push them on a good path.  The youth of our world need mentors and people who truly care about them.

So when you a feeling lost, just remember that the journey is long, but so worth it.  My journey started six years ago, as a Senior in high school applying to ungrad.  So much has happened over the years, but the one thing I wish I would have done, is listen to my friends and family around me (and even random people).   Sometimes the people in your life know you better than yourself.  I have been told for years I would make an amazing counselor, based on my natural God given talents AND my interests.  IT TOOK ME SIX YEARS TO LISTEN TO ALL THOSE PEOPLE.  God places people in our lives for a reason, so listen to what they have to say.

For those of you in a career or major you do not enjoy, DO NOT WORRY.   Take time to listen to Him.  Journal to Him, go to Adoration, make Pros and Cons lists, talk with people in other fields, talk with friends, use the resources around you to best direct your life, but always keep Him at the center of it all.  I spend four years in a major I did not enjoy, but I do not regret it, and I would not change any of my journey.  It helped me become the person I am today, it gave me the friends and community that helped me fill my life with Christ, and has lead me to the career of my dreams.

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”   Joshua 1:9

Sorry this was so long, but I just wanted to share!  This is for all those who are feeling a little helpless, you got this!   God is good, life is good.   I love you all ❤  


Nellie Ray


12 thoughts on “My Journey – Engineer to Social Worker

  1. That is so awesome Nelson. Much love and blessings.
    I too was a reluctant engineer 😛
    There is nothing more satisfying than helping others lead happier and healthier lives 💕🤗

    Liked by 2 people

  2. my life is a little of a reverse-chronicle as compared to yours.
    I joined a class of computer science with the view of being an engineer sort of.Again I only yearned for piloting and nothing else for quite a long time before.Yet I ended dropping out in my second year and joined a group of social workers.
    What a waste of time and life!!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s