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Title: The dawn is too distant: The experience of 28 social work graduates entering the social work field in China
Author(s): Lam, Ching Man 
Author(s): Yan, M. C.
Gao, J. G.
Issue Date: 2013
Publisher: Routledge
Journal: Social Work Education 
Volume: 32
Issue: 4
Start page: 538
End page: 551
Nurturing new, competent social work professionals requires multilevel preparation extending from school to the workplace. However, not much has been done to understand this school-to-work transition process in countries where the social work profession is still in an early stage of development. This paper reports the findings of an exploratory qualitative study of 28 new social workers in China, where social work is an emerging profession, on how they entered the field and what challenges they encountered. Their stories indicate that what they learned in school did form a foundation for the establishment of their professional identity in the workplace. However, due to workplace politics and to the lack of recognition of their professional status, they experienced an unsettling induction process. Coupled with the challenges of inadequate financial compensation, the careers of these new social workers may face an early end despite the great future for the profession promised by the government. Implications of this study for social work education in China are also discussed.
DOI: 10.1080/02615479.2012.688097
CIHE Affiliated Publication: No
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