Dean's Welcome Message
Dr. Nancy J. Smyth
As Dean of the School, I would like to welcome you to the University at Buffalo School of Social Work. We are a vibrant and diverse community of scholars, educators, practitioners, and life-long learners—we are unified by our vision of a better society achieved through the generation and transmission of knowledge, promotion of social justice, and service to humanity.
As part of the University at Buffalo, the flagship campus in the New York State University system, we offer a wealth of opportunities for learning, both inside and outside the classroom. As the twelfth most international campus in the United States, UB students and faculty can develop relationships with people from all over the world. In addition, we are located in a bi-national region that is steeped in history and diversity. From the nearby Southern Ontario region of Canada, to the reservation communities of the Seneca and Tuscarora Nations, Western New York and the Buffalo-Niagara region have much to offer. Our masters students are in field placements through the region and in neighboring states and Canada. However, our learning opportunities are much broader—students work with faculty on nationally and internationally-focused research.
Every one of our faculty and professional staff influences communities in multiple ways, for example, by: sharing expertise on an agency or professional association board of directors, conducting research projects in partnership with community agencies, reviewing and editing articles for professional publications for social workers and other professionals all over the world, writing books that educate the next generation of social workers in the U.S. and abroad, presenting at the United Nations Indigenous Peoples’ Forum, providing consultation to agencies, and participating in the prestigious Campbell Collaboration, an international group that sets policy on evidenced-based practice. The impact of this work is not limited to the communities outside of the university--faculty integrate this expertise in their teaching, bringing it into the classroom and creating real world and service learning assignments for students.
Faculty research touches on many critical topics, including substance abuse, trauma, aging, health access, chronic disease, child welfare, sexuality, and cross-cultural practice. Our research center, the Buffalo Center for Social Research highlights some of this work, as do the publications listed in the faculty section of our website. Our faculty also are an important part of the University’s UB 2020 Strategic Strengths, bringing our expertise to the areas of Extreme Events; Health and Wellness Across the Lifespan; and Civic Engagement and Public Policy.
We believe that one person, one group, one organization, one community can make a difference in the world, and we have over 5800 alumni all over the world who are living proof that this is so. Check out our magazine, Mosaics, to read about their important work.
Finally, we recently finished documenting our own rich, seventy-five year history, so please visit our History Project page for an overview and for information on ordering the documentary video.
Thanks for stopping by. I hope you’ll explore our website to discover more about our community, accomplishments and opportunities.