Angela McKinney '19 Headshot

Angela McKinney '19

Social Work

Improving Her Community

After moving to Cedar Rapids from Chicago in 2014, Angela McKinney ’19 went on to earn an associate’s degree from Kirkwood and a bachelor’s degree from Mount Mercy—while working for the Jane Boyd Community House in an after-school program.

“The after-school program was a safe place for children who lived in the Wellington Heights/Oakhill-Jackson Community to go after school,” said McKinney. “In 2017, five hours a week were cut from programming. That’s when I decided I would return to school to complete my bachelor’s degree.”

McKinney wanted to open more opportunities for herself, so she enrolled at Mount Mercy. The social work program began to prepare her for both the professional community and graduate school. When interviewing for graduate school placement, she found that many of the assignments and projects she completed at MMU were brought up and discussed.

My field placement impacted my career goal through the program structure and how the Transitional Housing Program works with women as a whole to help women gain their independence and lead a meaningful life.

Angela McKinney '19

Her two field placements—at Tanager Place and the Catherine McAuley Center—also connected her with local professionals, while challenging her to learn and do more.

“My children enjoy it here, and the opportunities are endless,” said McKinney. “I’ve developed connections to the community through my work with Jane Boyd and my MMU education. Cedar Rapids is a resource rich city. I feel the local agencies have a common goal: to help people build a stronger foundation. This is why I want to give back to the Cedar Rapids community.”

McKinney is now a case manager for Catherine McAuley Center’s Transitional Housing Program, which works with unaccompanied women who are homeless as a result of substance abuse, domestic violence, or mental illness. This opportunity was opened to her after a conversation with the program manager. They discussed what would be best for her career goals, and McKinney began as full-time in June 2019.

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