Hiding Our Social Work Assets



I have a presence on all the major social media platforms (except TikTok). I am most active on Instagram because it’s fun and easy. With so much happening during the last two years – pandemic, police brutality, mass shooting, political division, overt racism – I needed something to that would allow me to feel productive and share valuable information but in a less-structured and less “professional” manner. I needed less news and more travel photos and cute baby videos. Since March is Social Work Month, I returned to Twitter almost out of habit. I remembered that my social work self is always alive on Twitter and how much I missed “social work” Twitter. Something reignited in me.

“Social Work is such a diverse field. There is so much more to this profession than therapy and child welfare. If you’re wondering how to leverage your social work degree, increase your earnings potential, or move into social work leadership, let’s chat.” Was posted with an image from The Social Work Effect of 36 possible social work job titles at the beginning of Social Work Month. The post has garnered almost 200 retweets, 400 likes, quite a few direct messages, and a collective ‘I didn’t know there was so much you can do with a social work degree’.

I’m always shocked and sad when I hear social workers and social work students say they went a specific route or took a specific job because they didn’t know there were other options. Why are we still hiding our social work assets? Diversity is one of the things that I love most about the social work profession. Our education and training results in so many transferable skills that I truly believe that the only limits on how we can use this degree are the limits in our minds.  It’s time to eliminate the status quo and elevate and expand the dimensions and possibilities of a career in social work. I am committed to doing my part.

I had already set a goal to speak to more social work students this year about building a successful social work career and I am currently scheduling guest lecturer dates, however I felt led to do more. I finally decided to revise my Uplevel Your Position Career Development Program specifically for undergraduate and graduate social work students. I will be announcing my next cohort soon.



Nicki Sanders, MSW, ushers high-performing women of color in mid-level social work and human services leadership through promotion to senior leadership. As Founder and CEO of Nicki Sanders Leadership Consulting, her mission is simple – to eliminate toxic workplaces by developing skilled, empathetic, and goal-oriented leaders who have the vision, support, and resources to create a culture where business prospers, and employees thrive individually and collectively. Nicki has an extensive background in nonprofit management leading high-functioning, multi-disciplinary teams. She is an accomplished professor, coach, trainer, and group facilitator who has combined her gift for authentic relationships, Master of Social Work degree, and over 20 years of diverse work experience to create a life and career aligned with her values and purpose. Nicki is a lover of cupcakes, travel, and 80’s hip hop and R&B music.

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