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Nico Ponza

Nico Ponza

Portrait of Nico

About

Why I'm majoring (or minoring) in Urban Studies: I am minoring in Urban Studies to learn ways of making cities more accessible to larger demographics.  Having lived in a suburban city my entire life, I have relied heavily on my car for transportation.  Last quarter, I studied abroad in Madrid and was immersed in the culture that surrounded this big city.  I instantly fell in love.  Furthermore, having skateboarded for more than half of my life, I am interested in analyzing the ways that different demographics utilize city space.

What I like best about Urban Studies: The best part of Urban Studies surrounds the real-world connections.  Learning about past successes and failures involved in urban spaces allows me to pick and choose my favorite parts of existing cities while imagining possibilities for future urban spaces.
 
Favorite class / professor (and why): Introduction to Urban Design with Dehan
(Danno) Glanz.  This class sparked my interest in Urban Studies, as I learned how to accurately diagram urban places and remark on the functionality of famous plazas and cities. I enjoyed seeing my ideas come to life through the design presentations, in which design groups remarked on the weaknesses of urban spaces and possible ideas for solutions.
 
Favorite book (and why): The Mutt-How to Skateboard and Not Kill Yourself remarks on the true creativity involved in a largely marginalized sport.
Skateboarding has been an essential part of my life since I was ten years old.  I feel that this sport has allowed me to creatively express myself outside of the classroom setting.  In a similar manner, Rodney Mullen's book demonstrates the commitment and dedication that is immersed within this sport.  As skateboarders consistently use the urban architecture of big cities, this book gives an alternate perspective surrounding the ideal use of the city.
 
Career goal / Future plans: I would love to work within product design and/or urban planning in the future Honors Thesis or other research project:
 
Other academic interests (major, minors): Science, Technology, and Society
 
Extracurriculars:
Board Member at the Tim Brauch Memorial Foundation Volunteer Coach at The Coaching Corps Community Manager at Kappa Alpha