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Bethia Stevenson (1929 - )

Bethia Stevenson 2015. Image courtesy of Gavin Blue Photography.

Beth’s initial awareness of social work as a profession came when a fellow Arts student described to her what a social worker did. Beth subsequently enrolled in the Diploma of Social Studies at The University of Melbourne, beginning her studies in 1963. She had a bursary from the Department of Health, and after graduation she worked first at Royal Park Psychiatric Hospital, followed by time at the Parkville Psychiatric Unit, then a move to Larundel Psychiatric Hospital as Senior Social Worker.

Her next move took her to the University of New South Wales, where she became Director of Field Education in the School of Social Work, a position she held for four and a half years before she returned to Melbourne. She then spent some time on a research project related to fieldwork resources in social welfare with the Social Welfare Commission before taking the position of Head of the Social Work Department at the Royal Women’s Hospital. Beth retired from the Women’s in 1989 when she reached the age of 60, but then began a part time job with the Victorian Council on the Ageing, where she was still employed at the time of the interview in October 1996.

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