Social Work welcomes five new faculty for the 2014-2015 academic year

Published September 8, 2014



With the full support of the University, the School of Social Work welcomes five new faculty members for the 2014-2015 academic year, and they include: associate professor Gretchen Ely and assistant professors John Baker, Annahita Ball, Elizabeth Bowen and Nadine (Shaanta) Murshid.

Gretchen Ely, the School’s newest associate professor, focuses her teaching and research on policy, in addition to her exploration of health disparities, behavioral and physical health related to intimate partnerships, and social justice. She also serves as a member of the editorial board for Social Work in Public Health, along with acting as a manuscript reviewer for several other publications. Ely is a member of the Council on Social Work Education, the Society for Social Work and Research, and the Social Work in Health Inequities Network.

John G. Baker is now an assistant professor in the School of Social Work. His research program is based in the University at Buffalo Concussion Management Clinic, with research projects including neuropsychology and neuroimaging aspects of concussion, returning to school after a concussion, exercise testing and treatment of concussion, and daily functioning treatment outcomes. He is the clinic neuropsychologist and teaches a practicum course in psychosocial aspects of concussion. Baker is also currently a member of the Psychological Association of Western New York.  

Annahita Ball, an assistant professor who researches interorganizational partnerships and interprofessional collaborations in youth-serving contexts that promote the healthy development of children and families, has pedagogical interest in matters of diversity and oppression, social work services in schools, human behavior, and policy. She is a member of the National Association of Social Workers, Society for Social Work and Research, Council on Social Work Education and American Council of School Social Workers. Ball is also a member of the Mental Health Education Integration Consortium (MHEDIC).

Assistant Professor Elizabeth Bowen enjoys teaching students about the nature and treatment of alcohol and other drug problems, social welfare history and policy, and health and disability social work. The recipient of several accolades in the profession, Bowen received the Doctoral Fellows Award from the Society for Social Work and Research (2014), the Chancellor’s Graduate Research Fellowships from the University of Illinois at Chicago (2013 and 2014), and a Fulbright Fellowship to Malaysia from the U.S. Department of State English Teaching Assistantship Program (2009), among many others. She is a member of the American Public Health Association, Society for Social Work and Research.

Shaanta Murshid, assistant professor, is passionate about educating future social workers about research, diversity and oppression, immigration, international social work, and violence. She was a member of the Doctoral Program Executive Committee at the Rutgers University School of Social Work and was also awarded a Saathi of Rochester Excellence in Education Award and an Excellence in Social Work Education Award from Rutgers. Murshid's social consciousness on both national and international levels has guided her talks and publications in both scholarly journals and popular media, including her 2014 article, "The killings at Bangladesh's Bihari Camp – Murder mystery or murder with impunity?" in India's Frontier Weekly.