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Helen P. Hartnett, Ph.D.

Professor and Coordinator, Eberly Interdisciplinary Research Collaborative for a Healthy and Safe Society

Dr. Hartnett served in the Peace Corps in the Dominican Republic in the early 1980’s as a health and nutrition specialist. She later became a social worker practicing community organizing and political advocacy. For many years, she worked with people who experienced homelessness to help shape just housing policies, income supports and health care access. Her Master’s thesis, degree in Women’s Studies and my PhD dissertation focused on the lives and experiences of people experiencing homelessness from a feminist lens. She has a record of teaching, research, and service in the areas of homelessness, advocacy/policy practice,community organizing, critical evaluation of practice, and the ways in which social work practice is influenced by socio-spatial processes – the geography of services provided to people in any environment. Her research continues to consider issues related to social justice in policy practice and access to treatment/care. She currently serves as the Chair of the Anti-Racism,Equity and Justice Committee in the School of Social Work and is a member of the Social Justice Think Tank in Eberly College of Arts and Sciences.


  • Ph.D., Ohio State University
  • M.S.W., Ohio State University
  • M.A., Women’s Studies, Ohio State University


  • Social Welfare Policy
  • Program Evaluation
  • Community and Organizational Practice


  • Homelessness
  • Community Practice
  • Program Evaluation
  • Social Geography


  • Committee on Anti-racism, Equity, and Justice
  • PhD Committee


  • Association for Community Organization and Social Administration (ACOSA)
  • Council on Social Work Education (CSWE)
  • National Association of Social Workers (NASW)


Rishel, C. W., Guthrie, S. K., & Hartnett, H. P.  (2020). Who am I and What do I do? Developing a Social Work
      Identity through Interprofessional Education and Practice. Advances in Social Work.

Rishel, C. W., Tabone, J. K., Hartnett, H. P., Szafran, K. F. (2019). Trauma-Informed Elementary Schools:       Evaluation of a School-Based Early Intervention for Young Children. Children & Schools, 41, 239-248.

Rishel, C. W. & Hartnett, H. P.  (2019). Preparing the Workforce to Prevent Behavioral Health Problems in Children       and Youth. Journal of Teaching in Social Work, 39, 2-22. 

Young, D., Texeira, S. & Hartnett, H.P. (2015) Social Action Meets Social Media: Environmental Justice in West       Virginia. Journal of Rural Social Work Vol. & No.1-Special Issue. Pp. 1-11.

Hartnett, H. P., Tower, L, Harper, C., Lech, J. & Hirsh, A (2014). Accommodations for people with disabilities in the       workplace: does gender matter? Disabilities Studies Quarterly
      retrieved 9/9/2014

Hartnett, H. P., & Postmus, J. (2010). The function of shelters for women: Assistance or social control? Journal of
      Human Behavior in the Social Environment 20:2, 289-302.

Hartnett, H. P. & Johnson, T. (2008). Anatomy of a Mean City: Including People Experiencing Homelessness in the       Discussion. Journal of Social Distress and the Homeless, 17(3), 171-183.