The Three "Whys"
Why Social Work?
A social work degree opens up more career paths than any other comparable degree. No other degree encompasses this breadth:
- Therapist, planner, community organizer, executive director, policy analyst, researcher
- Work across systems: individuals, families of all forms, groups, organizations, neighborhoods, service systems, communities, regions, states, nations
- Every field of practice: addictions, aging, anti-poverty, child welfare, criminal justice, disabilities, health, mental health, social development, social justice, trauma … just to name a few!
- Work with people: in schools, hospitals, prisons, the military, clinics, agencies, government, communities.
- Work on behalf of the vulnerable and oppressed in society to “challenge social injustice,” to end discrimination, to address poverty, and to promote meaningful change.
- Build on strengths, support growth, prevent problems, ameliorate long-standing problems, advocate for change, develop innovative interventions, lead an organization, unravel the causes of complex social problems, study what works, educate the next generation of social workers
These are just some of the opportunities provided to you by becoming a social worker. Only a degree in social work opens ALL of these doors and many others.
Live Large. Choose Social Work.
Why Social Work at UB?
Don’t choose us because you want the standard elements of a social work degree in an accredited program. We DO have all those elements. But so does everyone else, so that’s not a good reason to choose us. Choose to join our community of learners because:
- You can individualize your education to meet your learning goals:
- MSW: create your advanced year from our diverse menu of courses
- PhD: design the focus of your interdisciplinary course of study choosing from the 10 other professional schools and academic departments through the university
- We’re ranked in the top 12% of CSWE accredited social work programs.
- We recognize the significant role that psychological trauma and human rights violations play in a range of social issues and so designed our MSW curriculum so it integrates a trauma-informed, human rights perspective to bring this additional lens to your understanding of the world.
- Our research is strongly rooted in community collaborative partnerships.
- Our university campus is ranked highest in international student diversity among U.S. public universities.
- Our university is ranked by Kiplinger in the top 100 of Best Values in Public Colleges.
Why Western New York?
The Buffalo-Niagara region is 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:
- Rich architectural heritage, including buildings by Frank Lloyd Wright and Richard Sullivan
- Extensive Frederick Law Olmstead system of parks and parkways
- Affordable housing and low cost of living
- Award-winning schools
- Thriving arts and cultural scene, including the Buffalo Philharmonic, the Albright Knox Art Museum, the Burchfield-Penney Art Museum, Just Buffalo Literary Center, Shea’s Performing Arts Center, Irish Classical Theater, and Shakespeare in the Park, just to name a few
- Proximity to three Great Lakes
- Minutes from Canada (Niagara on the Lake, Niagara Falls, Toronto, The Shaw Festival, Stratford Shakespeare Festival)
- Urban, suburban, and rural communities
- Major league professional sports (football, hockey, lacrosse)
Want to know more?
There's a wealth of information available about our region. Here are a few resources to get you started:
- A Glimpse of Buffalo: Take this virtual tour of Buffalo, a YouTube video that features some of the family members of students from our international student community.
- Buffalo: This Place Matters: A video overview of the distinct character of Buffalo neighborhoods, architecture, and culture, making it very clear why Buffalo was selected as a site for the conference of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
- Some Key Regional Resources: Buffalo Niagara Enterprise presents some of the regional assets for living and working here and the Buffalo Niagara Convention and Visitor’s Bureau describes some of the regional attractions. For local stories about the region, check out Buffalo Rising, one of the major local blogs.