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Jennifer Zelnick, MSW, ScD

Associate Professor, Chair, Social Welfare Policy Sequence

BA, Temple University; MSW, University of Pittsburgh; ScD, University of Massachusetts, Lowell

Dr. Jennifer Zelnick’s academic and practice career has focused on advocacy and organizing to improve social policies in health and social services. Before embarking on an academic career, Dr. Zelnick worked with youth and families in community-based social services that addressed domestic violence, substance abuse, and homelessness in Philadelphia, PA and Tucson, AZ; worked as a community/union organizer; and served as the executive director of a non-profit organization dedicated to health care reform. She has taught social welfare policy, community organizing, and research at the Master’s level at Salem State University and the Hunter College School of Social Work for more than 10 years. Dr. Zelnick’s research focuses on the health and social service workplace, and be- gins with the premise that that quality health/social services depend on de- cent, sustainable work environments. Her research is geared towards useful input into policy development. Recent projects have focused on understanding nurses’ views on infection control in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa and workplace violence against social workers in Massachusetts. Dr. Zelnick is the co-editor of the book review section of the Journal of Sociology and Social Welfare. As the new chair of the Touro College Graduate School of Social Work Social Welfare Policy sequence, Dr. Zelnick will dedicate her strengths and passion to engaging clinical social work students from different backgrounds in learning about the political process, social justice, advocacy, and macro-practice skills needed for leadership in the social work field.