Spring graduates are official

The official numbers for Spring graduates are in. Thirty-two graduate students earned their degrees through the School this spring, including three doctoral students. On the undergraduate side, 84 students earned their degree in Interdisciplinary Studies, six with Latin Honors.

Congratulations to all our graduates!

View photos and video of the School’s commencement ceremony.

Campers experience college life

Story and photo by Sara Abraham-Oxford

INTS Summer Camp

Camp attendees with Dunbar High School Teacher Cameron C. Sandler (left) and INTS Advisors LaKalya Cooper and Carolyn Gist (right).

Fourteen high school students from the Fort Worth ISD participated in an Interdisciplinary Studies Mavs Summer Camp hosted by the School last week. The three-day camp included sessions with INTS Director Dr. Donna Akers and INTS faculty, a community involvement presentation led by Fort Worth Deputy Mayor MaryAnn Means, a Planning for Action session led by Institute for Urban Studies Director Brian Guenzel, and a visit to the campus Community Garden.

Campers also learned about financial aid and the study abroad program and took a campus tour. Rounding out the students’ simulated college experience were a stay in KC Hall, meals at the Connection Café in the University Center, and recreational sports at the Maverick Activities Center. INTS Academic Advisors LaKayla Cooper and Carolyn Gist kept the campers on track during all of the activities.

See more photos from the camp.

Workshop immerses students in spatial analysis

Story and photo by Sara Abraham-Oxford
Workshop_SpatialAnalysis

Dr. Treviño (standing) works with students during the workshop.

Students and staff attended the Spatial Analysis Workshop hosted by the School last week. Dr. Jesús Treviño, an Urban Planning and Public Policy (UPPP) alumnus and professor at Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León in Mexico, led the workshop.

The workshop was “really useful for academic research although it was quite heavy material for three days,” said Kukhyoung Kim, a UPPP student. She noted that an especially useful feature of the workshop was access to some of Treviño’s research databases along with step-by-step instructions on conducting spatial analysis on them. Kim added that the workshop’s focus on combining spatial and non-spatial data required some statistical knowledge in addition to using geographic information systems (GIS).

Dr. Jesus Trevino to lead GIS Workshop

This workshop is for UTA students, faculty and staff, and SUPA alumni:

GIS Workshop_July 2014

Research analyzes location patterns of arts organizations

Art Spaces, Art Places Report CoverDr. Carl Grodach and two graduate students recently completed a report titled “Art Spaces, Art Places: Examining Neighborhood Preferences of New York Arts Organizations.” Their research studied the location patterns of New York state and city arts organizations, finding that while there is a link between these organizations and the urban core and creative economy, the organizations tend to avoid diverse and disadvantaged neighborhoods. The researchers note that identifying key neighborhood attributes associated with distinct types of arts organizations can help identify potential sites and strategies to engage the organizations in underserved neighborhoods.

Urban Planning and Public Policy doctoral students Nicole Foster and James Murdoch III worked on the research with Dr. Grodach. The report was made possible by a grant from New York Community Trust’s Arts & Culture Research Fund. The research will be presented at two special sessions on the Arts and Urban Planning at The Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning (ACSP) conference in Philadelphia this fall.

Dr. Martinez-Cosio’s research wins award

Dr. Maria Martinez-Cosio was awarded the 2014 Current Research Award from the Community Development Society. The award was given to Dr. Martinez-Cosio and her co-author, Dr. Mirle Rabinowitz Bussell, in recognition of work on their book “Catalysts for Change: 21st Century Philanthropy and Community Development.” Dr. Martinez-Cosio was also appointed to a U.S.-Canadian research collaboration, “Philanthropic Action of Canada’s Grant-Making Foundations: Investigating their Social Innovation and Catalytic role in Societal Change,” funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. Her role will be to share the typology she developed on private foundations engaged in community development in the U.S. and help develop points of comparison with Canadian foundations.

Spring graduates advance to alumni status

SUPA Commencement Spring 2014

SUPA’s spring commencement ceremony was held May 9 at the UTA’s College Park Center. The ceremony included hooding for doctoral candidates on stage. Program directors Dr. David Coursey, Dr. Ard Anjomani and Dr. Rod Hissong hooded the School’s masters candidates before the ceremony.

Dean Barbara Becker, the faculty and staff congratulate these graduates and welcome them as SUPA alumni.
View photos and video of the School’s commencement ceremony.

Online MPA program ranked No. 4

Good news about SUPA’s Online MPA program, which placed No. 4 in the Spring 2014 rankings of top graduate programs on GraduatePrograms.com. View the ranking. Rankings are based on ratings and reviews from current or recent graduate students on the site. Thank you students!

Interest in urban form links student group with professionals

by Sara Abraham-Oxford
A strong focus on the urban form defines Students for the New Urbanism (SNU), one of the student organizations at the School. Affiliated with the Congress for the New Urbanism which promotes walkable, mixed-use spaces, SNU was formed “to connect students with the professional community,” said Shane Pace, founder and 2013 President of the student organization and a Master of City and Regional Planning alumnus. He added, “While there is some crossover with the Student Planning Association, there are different professionals that SNU relates to including architects, urban theorists and designers.”
SNU aims to work as an advocate for new urbanism practices, raise awareness about the built environment, present educational forums and provide opportunities for members to network with professionals. The student organization held officer elections in Fall 2013, with the newly elected officers taking office in January. Incoming SNU President Kristina Heredia is a Master of City and Regional Planning student.

Visiting Scholar assessing street addressing systems

Post and photo by Sara Abraham-Oxford

Maher AlshammariDr. Maher Alshammari, a visiting scholar at the School of Urban and Public Affairs, is somewhat acquainted with SUPA faculty and the UTA campus. Alshammari earned a Master of City and Regional Planning degree as well as a Ph.D. in Urban Planning and Pubic Policy from SUPA. He is currently on sabbatical leave from his position as Assistant Professor at the University of Dammam in Saudi Arabia.

While at SUPA, the scholar is working on his research titled “A Comprehensive Street Addressing System for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia: An Exploratory Study of Replicating the US System in the Kingdom.” He will examine the challenges of improving the system for identifying buildings, streets and neighborhoods in Saudi Arabia; evaluate previous approaches to the system; and review the system used in the U.S. Additionally, Alshammari will use a survey to identify elements of an ideal addressing system suitable for Saudi Arabia. The research goal is to determine how a well-organized street addressing system could serve Saudi Arabia.

Alshammari particularly appreciates the guidance of Professor Ard Anjomani, who was the chair of his dissertation committee, as well as the resources available through the Institute of Urban Studies and the UTA Library, while he works on his research. He will be at SUPA until January 2015.