About Nancy J. Smyth

I’m professor/dean at the University at Buffalo School of Social Work, occasional blogger, and a self-proclaimed geek. I’ve worked as a clinical social worker for over 25 years, primarily doing psychotherapy with people recovering from trauma and addiction; at the moment, though I’m taking a break from my work as a psychotherapist. My research and teaching has focused on the interface between addiction and mental health problems, which has led me to focusing on trauma.

When not working or spending time with my family, I can be found lurking around Facebook, Twitter, Second Life and other virtual spaces. I am often asked about how I got interested in virtual worlds: if you’re interested in this, check out my blog post that answers that question.

This blog explores the human connections that we make in a virtual spaces as well as the interface between social work and technology, especially Web 2.0. In addition, topics related to education, higher education, social work, and technology are sometimes featured. At the heart of all of it though, what I’m really interested in are all the ways we connect with one another in virtual spaces and how it influences “real life” and changes who we are, how we view the world, how we learn, and how we grow.

Unfortunately, the demands of my job often result in sporadic blogging. My posts are infrequent…but I’m here. And please know that all of the opinions expressed here are strictly my own and do not reflect opinions held by the University at Buffalo, or the University at Buffalo School of Social Work.

18 thoughts on “About Nancy J. Smyth

  1. Hi Nancy
    Love your blog….I am LCSW and tech geek. Enjoy your posts….been sharing them on my twitter and FB via tweetdeck. Im in Maplewood, NJ. Love exploring therpay/internet connection. Will be back to your blog to post more! Thanks

    Debra

    Like

  2. Hi Nancy
    I really enjoy your blog and its great to have a professional experiencing second life and sharing those experiences. I have a mental illness and have been using SL for the past few months as a treatment and support tool. I was only diagnosed last year. I have started an art gallery and support ‘retreat’ for want of a better term in SL and thought you might like a look. I also put out a free magazine related to the gallery and you can pick that up there. This is a little background about what I’m trying to achieve. It was an introductory article in the first magazine issue.

    AN OPEN LETTER TO ALL SECOND LIFE RESIDENTS, FAMILY MEMBERS, CARERS AND COMPASSIONATE SUPPORTERS OF ARTISTS WHO SUFFER MENTAL HEALTH ILLNESS

    T A M I, The Art of Mental Illness, is an art gallery established for the exhibition of all forms of art, by people who deal with mental illness daily. The gallery is managed by founder and curator, Danny Noyes, whose real life persona has suffered with Bipolar Affective Disorder with Suicidal Ideation for over a decade.
    My real life persona has found that people with such conditions have talents that so often go unrecognised. Sometimes, because of the stigma and misunderstanding these illnesses have within our communities, others, because of the extremely poor self esteem or outrageously high expectations. Such is the manner of some disorders. Using second life and creating a supportive community around this gallery, will I’m sure, build an understanding, that all of us in the mental health community, carers and effected, should look forward too.
    This Gallery then is established with this objective. To provide an outlet within second life to exhibit, discuss and support, residence with artistic passion that suffer with mental health issues. To exhibit all forms of the arts at no cost to the artist. To only have original work that may be sold directly through the artist. To encourage artists to provide links and information to their real world art for proper exposure. To seek support from benefactors to improve the real life exposure of the artists with mental health issues. The Art of Mental Illness – Art gallery is for all of us who feel safe in second life living with these wretched conditions. My aim is to ‘get the word out’ because understanding these conditions, goes a long way in assisting real life people to lead as normal a life as they can. Your support in this will go a long way in helping. If you would like to help please email me at dannynoyes@theartofmentalillness.com.au
    You may also join out group, The SL Group for Mental Illness.
    The Art of mental Illness is at Longwood.

    So obviously Danny is me in SL. I hope you have a look. Kind Regards

    Glenn Callaghan

    Like

    • Hi Glenn (Danny)…I’m honored to have you stop by my blog and share your letter and link to the The Art of Mental Illness gallery. I will definitely check it out! Thanks so much.

      Like

  3. T A M I, The Art of Mental Illness, is an art gallery established for the exhibition of all forms of art, by people who deal with mental illness daily. The gallery is managed by founder and curator, Danny Noyes, whose real life persona has suffered with Bipolar Affective Disorder with Suicidal Ideation for over a decade.
    My real life persona has found that people with such conditions have talents that so often go unrecognised. Sometimes, because of the stigma and misunderstanding these illnesses have within our communities, others, because of the extremely poor self esteem or outrageously high expectations. Such is the manner of some disorders. Using second life and creating a supportive community around this gallery, will I’m sure, build an understanding, that all of us in the mental health community, carers and effected, should look forward too.
    This Gallery then is established with this objective. To provide an outlet within second life to exhibit, discuss and support, residence with artistic passion that suffer with mental health issues. To exhibit all forms of the arts at no cost to the artist. To only have original work that may be sold directly through the artist. To encourage artists to provide links and information to their real world art for proper exposure. To seek support from benefactors to improve the real life exposure of the artists with mental health issues. The Art of Mental Illness – Art gallery is for all of us who feel safe in second life living with these wretched conditions. My aim is to ‘get the word out’ because understanding these conditions, goes a long way in assisting real life people to lead as normal a life as they can. Your support in this will go a long way in helping. If you would like to help please email me at dannynoyes@theartofmentalillness.com.au
    You may also join out group, The SL Group for Mental Illness.
    The Art of mental Illness is at Longwood.

    +1

    Like

  4. Hi, Nancy,
    can I print your 9.10.2010 blog about Facebook in my newsletter?
    I find it very relevant and helpful. Thanks for sharing your views!

    I believe Facebook has great potential for good, and also for ill.
    Using it wisely can add much power to good goals.

    Dana Terrell, LCSW

    Like

  5. Nancy J. Smyth,

    The SR Education Group is a publisher of resources for potential students, and were currently in search of experts who are willing to share their Social Worker expertise. Your name came up in a Twitter search for professionals in this field. In appreciation of your time and insight, were offering a $50 Amazon.com gift card in exchange for a short article.

    You can see an example of what were looking for at http://www.onlineclasses.net/expert-education-opinions

    Let me know if this is something you might be interested in, and Ill provide details.

    Thanks,

    Kathryn Colclazier
    Outreach Coordinator
    SR Education Group

    Like

  6. Hi Nancy,

    I noticed that you recently read and tweeted about “Lucidchart – Excellent Web Based Diagramming and Charts, Free for Educators and Students”.

    We’d really love to get the word out to as many educators as possible about this powerful free tool, and were wondering if you would be willing to help us by writing a review of our app on your blog or letting us ghost write one for you?

    Thanks,
    Jane

    Like

    • Thanks for your comment, Jane. I may decide to do a review on Lucidchart at some point, when I have time to explore it. I bookmarked it for something to check out in more depth in the future.

      Best of luck to you in your work on Lucidchart!

      Like

  7. Pingback: #SWpolicy410 & Twitter Chats in Social Work Education | Jimmysw's Blog

  8. Pingback: Notes from an Aspiring Humanitarian Receives The Liebster Award | Notes from an Aspiring Humanitarian (N.A.H.)

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