Last year was a very special year for Mackaully Parada. It was the year she would graduate from Seton Hall University with a Bachelor's Degree in Social Work, marry her husband who she met during her first week at Seton Hall 4 years prior, live in 3 different states, and begin her Master's Degree at the #1 ranked M.S.W. program in the nation. This was the year that many of Parada's dreams came true, but it was only the beginning of what would be an enriching adventure and fruitful career in her life after Seton Hall.
Seton Hall was very much Mackaully's second home throughout her 4 years as an undergraduate student. A native New Yorker, she lived in the dormitories, worked on campus, participated in intramurals, and spent many nights in the Walsh Library. Though Mackaully considers herself to have been a "normal college student," her B.S.W. experience was nothing less than extraordinary. At Seton Hall, she was given the opportunity to participate in 3 off-campus internships to supplement what she was learning in the classroom, which made "all the difference" in the love and passion she developed for the field of social work. Even more important, Mackaully says, were the relationships she built with her professors. "My professors at Seton Hall believed in me and pushed me to achieve at my highest potential. They worked with each of us individually and helped mold us, according to our unique interests and abilities, into the professionals we are today. With their support and mentorship, I was given the tools and the confidence to follow my dreams."
Mackaully's resume, filled with noteworthy internship experiences, numerous volunteer involvements through Seton Hall's DOVE programs, and excellent faculty recommendations, caught the attention of graduate admissions offices nation-wide. After earning admission into the top 3 M.S.W. programs in the country, Mackaully chose to attend the University of Michigan School of Social Work; she pursued a concentration in Interpersonal Practice and Health with a minor in Management of Human Services. "The skills I developed while completing my major studies in Social Work in the Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Social Work and double-minoring in Psychology and Criminal Justice on top of internships and extracurriculars at SHU gave me a huge advantage in graduate school because I was already taught how to balance heavy 18-credit workloads with practicum obligations."
Throughout her 12-month accelerated M.S.W. program, made possible by Seton Hall's B.S.W. accreditation status, Mackaully was selected for an intense 1,000+ hour internship at the Children's Hospital of Michigan (CHM), where she worked under the supervision of the hospital's Cardiovascular Transplant Social Worker and was the first M.S.W. student in CHM history to observe an Orthotopic Heart Transplant from inside the operating room. "My experiences at the Children's Hospital were incredibly humbling and they truly heightened my passion for medical social work. However, if it hadn't been for the rigorous preparation and training I received at Seton Hall, it would have been far more challenging to adjust to the fast-paced intensity of social work in a Level 1 Trauma Center."
One year and two degrees later following her 2017 graduation from Seton Hall, Mackaully is employed as a Clinical Social Worker in a major healthcare system. She credits her educational and professional successes to God, her family, and Seton Hall University, and feels "forever grateful" for her four years in South Orange. "Seton Hall gave me life-long friends, my loving husband, invaluable mentors, priceless memories, and an unparalleled undergraduate experience."