Dina Andrews has created quite the legacy. She is the epitome of social work, not only having mastered the interventions and skills required, but also maintaining the ability to follow her heart and share it with those around her. If you were to spend five minutes with her, you would leave her presence feeling happier and healthier.
As an employee of The Guidance Center, Dina has worn many hats. Her clinical skills have assisted not only thousands of children but the hundreds of supervisees, interns, colleagues and community partners with whom she has interacted. When Dina began her work with The Guidance Center 30 years ago, she would have no idea how broad her impact would be. She has weathered macro systems evolving, program development, role changes and many, many more phases during the life of her career. As an agency historian, Dina recounts many experiences and staff that have come and gone during the past three decades.
At the heart of who Dina is stands a professional who is 100% committed and dedicated to her work. Often being the first to arrive and the last to leave for the day, her door is always open for those around her. Work highlights for Dina include; her passion for training social work interns, involvement in the Transition Age Youth (TAY) services, dedication to the School Based Program and her community outreach. The social work field is lucky to have Dina as her thoughts are always first and foremost on the training and guidance of future social workers.
Having a strong desire to teach, she is always the first to ask for more interns. She willingly takes on more work in order to develop competent interns that will head out into the profession well-trained. Dina also spent a couple of years during the 1990’s coordinating the transitional youth and young adult program with Los Angeles County. She ran groups for teens and incorporated outside speakers and parents in order to further support the youth in the groups.
As an integral part of the School Based Program, Dina is known for her connections with her schools, her unfaltering support for her staff and her cheerful and positive demeanor.
Dina’s true spirit is in her outreach. Very few people in Long Beach have not heard of her or benefited in some way from her skills. As a naturally warm and compassionate person, Dina was integral in creating linkages with the district when the Center’s School Based Program was just starting. Dina facilitated the partnership with Healthy Start locations and thus the School Based Program gained roots.
Since then, Dina has spent the past 20 years working to strengthen community relationships between the schools, the students, community resources and The Guidance Center. Dina is the first to volunteer for community events, health fairs, career development days, cultural fairs and family nights at schools.
We are immensely grateful for the 30 years that Dina has shared with us. We simply wouldn’t be where we are today without her.