After struggling and overcoming her own issues with substance abuse, Altemese “Ally” Worthy knew that she had the first-hand knowledge and experience to help others with similar problems.
“I was born and raised in New York and worked as a substance abuse counselor for 12 years,” she said. “As the single mother of a young son, I knew that it was time to leave the big city. We moved to North Carolina in 2006 for peace of mind and a fresh start.”
At first, Worthy was discouraged because her New York credentials were not recognized in North Carolina. However, a good friend suggested that she look into the Human Services Technology program at Sandhills Community College. Once she found out about the courses in Substance Abuse, she enrolled in 2009. She graduated in May 2011 with an Associate in Applied Science in Human Services Technology – Substance Abuse.
She believes that she was incredibly blessed during her time at SCC, which she feels was validated by her success. She was inducted into Phi Theta Kappa, the international honor society whose membership is available to students by invitation only and requires a 3.7 GPA. She won an academic achievement award for Counseling and was an active participant in the Human Service Club. She also worked as the work-study for the campus’s Police Department where she performed a myriad of duties including monitoring and reviewing the operations of security cameras and processing campus citations.
“Moving to North Carolina was the right choice,” Worthy said. “I love my college experience as an adult learner.” Worthy will transfer to the University of North Carolina at Pembroke in the fall to pursue a bachelor’s degree in Social Work.
After graduation, she looks forward to putting all of her knowledge, experience and education to work by becoming a liaison between jail and treatment. “I want to be a voice for people who don’t have a voice,” she said. “People need someone whom they can depend on, and I want to be that someone.”
The Human Services profession is dedicated to providing services to individuals and families in need of assistance. It works to enhance the quality of life for those who are served. Human service professionals perform a variety of roles including serving as counselor to those who need support; broker to help people use community resources; teacher of daily living skills; advocate for those who are unable to advocate for themselves; mediator between clients and between clients and agencies caregiver to children, elders, disabled adults and counselor of substance abuse.
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