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Meet Our Intern Angela Trenda


Angela Trenda is a Master’s of Social Work (MSW) intern at Vinland’s residential program in Loretto. She is working on getting her MSW through University of St. Thomas and St. Catherine’s University’s School of Social work. She is on track to graduate in May 2017.

Why are you interested in your field of study?

I have a background in investments, marketing and communications. So, this was a career change for me that evolved over the years. Once I left the corporate world, I moved into consulting for non-profits in marketing and development. It was through those experiences that I saw the wonderful work that many social service agencies do and I wanted to work more directly with clients. My colleagues encouraged me to get my MSW. My classes and interning at Vinland have reaffirmed that getting my MSW is the right path for me; we’re doing heart-centered work.

Why were you interested in an internship at Vinland?

I knew from the moment I walked in that Vinland was a special place. It quickly became apparent that Vinland is dedicated to helping clients work on recovery in all aspects – mind, body and spirit. The staff is amazing. There’s a lot of laughter, joy, compassion, and positive work going on here.

What do you like to do for fun?

I enjoy biking in the summer and cross country skiing in the winter. I’m a true Minnesotan – I like being outside in all seasons. I also have a passion for doing abstract paintings.

What is your favorite part about working at Vinland?

There’s so much that I love about working here. I enjoy collaborating with and learning from the staff, and I’m learning a lot from the wisdom and strengths that the clients have too. Many of the clients have experienced difficult circumstances and I am in awe of their determination to work through those challenges. One of the things I like best is working in partnership with clients and staff to help clients discover the capabilities they have in changing their lives.

If you could have dinner with someone alive or dead who would it be and why?

I would like to have dinner with Eleanor Roosevelt. She is inspirational to me in the way that she traveled across the U.S., directly learning about the hardships and resilience of the people. She was the voice for people who felt they had none and helped to create and change policy and programs that positively impacted so many in our country.

How do you deal with challenges in life?

I take challenges one step at a time, break them apart, and look for the possibilities.

What is your favorite music on any given day?

I like to mix it up and listen to music from the 80s through what’s currently on the radio. I turn up the volume for Coldplay and Adele.

If you never had to worry about money, what would you do with your life?

I’d do what I’m doing; no question.

What movie have you seen and enjoyed? What book are you reading now?

I most recently saw “The Martian” and I read a lot for school but one of my favorite books (which was made into a mini-series) is “Pillars of the Earth” by Ken Follett. It’s got it all – good, evil, struggle, triumph, lots of twists and turns.