A Desire to Help Others Drives Mansfield University’s Dai Davis

MANSFIELD, PA – When Dai Davis began her academic journey at Mansfield, a Commonwealth University, her goal was to help others by becoming a nurse. But through course work, she soon found that nursing wasn’t the right career path. Instead, a class in social work led her to change her major and chart a new way to help others.

“I learned that my desire to help others was through empowerment and advocacy,” Davis said. “Addiction: Assessment, Treatment, and Prevent was the first social work course that I enrolled in, and it opened my eyes to how I really wanted to help people.”

Dai Davis cheering during a Mansfield football game
Davis cheering during a Mansfield football game

“When people hear the term social work they automatically think it is a profession strictly based on helping children,” Davis added. “However, social and child welfare workers aim for family preservation as much as possible. Social work and social workers have so much to offer from gerontology to medical, financial, education, and even mental health. Bachelor of Social Work students understand how people interact at micro, mezzo, and macro levels.”

Davis, a first-generation college student from Philadelphia, chose to attend Mansfield after coming for a visit in the spring of 2019. She immediately felt at home and saw the faculty’s passion for wanting their students to be successful and reach their full potential. 

Dr. Tiffany Welch, BSW program director and Mansfield lead, says Davis is driven and works hard to get the most from her education.

“Dai is one of many outstanding examples of a student leader in our Bachelor of Social Work program,” Welch said. “Since arriving, she has demonstrated a commitment to the six core values of social work. She has stood out in various ways as she has held leadership positions and worked in our campus cupboard, assisting the learners on campus with getting their basic needs met.”

“Dai has also been an advocate for her peers, been a voice for the BIPOC community, and voted by her peers as a leader in both the social work club and Phi Alpha honor society. She demonstrates a solid work ethic, and is committed to the practice of these skills here at Mansfield as well in her life,” Welch added. “Dai has already entered into a contract as a Child Welfare Education for Baccalaureates student which requires her to commit to working in the state of Pennsylvania at a county children and youth agency for one year post-graduation. I am so proud of her desire to help others and be a positive voice for change in our world.”

Left to right: Akiah Lovett, SWK club secretary, Lexie Ashley, Phi Alpha Social Work Honor Society President, Iyendai Davis, President Social Work Club, Dr Tiffany Welch, advisor to both SWK club and Phi Alpha Honor Society 

Davis can devote time to being active on campus as president of the Social Work Club and treasurer of the Eta Chi chapter of Phi Alpha Social Work Honor Society through several scholarships she has received. She also finds time to be on the cheer team.

“Because I did not have to worry about working or taking out loans to attend Mansfield University, I could capture the full college experience. I was able to join organizations and hold executive board positions,” Davis said. “Through institutional and private scholarships, I can bridge the gap to cover the cost of attendance. Without these funds, I would not be graduating as a first-generation student in five months. Not being able to afford school is the main reason people drop out.”

“Life after graduation is all about obtaining licensure and one day being Iyendai S. Davis, LCSW,” Davis added. “I plan on seeking a Master’s in Social Work with a concentration in healthcare. After completing the program, I would like to serve as a medical social worker in intensive care units and neonatal intensive care units.”