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Peer Advisors

Contact any of the peer advisors if you have a question about the major and would like a student perspective!

Interested in becoming a peer advisor?  It’s a great way to be involved in the major, meet new people, and spread the word about Urban Studies!  Applications are due in May to Associate Director Michael Kahan.  You may download the application form (PDF).

Portrait of Santos holding a dog.

Santos Hernandez

Concentration:Urban Society and Social Change
Hometown: East Lansing, MI
Year expecting to graduate:
Honors thesis or other research project:

Why I'm majoring (or minoring) in Urban Studies:

As a former engineering student, I think that the major is a great combination of hard social science skills and applied sociology. I have been fascinated by cities since I was a child, frequently traveling to Detroit to visit my father's neighborhood and family. I hope to do impactful work for underserved communities like those in Detroit and Urban Studies gives me the context and tools to be successful that sector.

What I like best about Urban Studies: The program has an undergraduate focus
so all the teachers really care about what they are teaching and their
students. People in the major also all tend to have a strong sense of justice
and care deeply about the same issues that I do.
 
Favorite class / professor (and why): URBANST112 - The Urban Underclass:
Every text feels so important to understanding race in American cities and
they also make up the seminal works of the Chicago School. I love urban
sociology, and this class has a ton of classic thought on it. As a bonus,
Michael Rosenfeld is an amazing lecturer and is who inspired me to change to
Urban Studies.
 
Favorite book (and why): The Road by Cormac McCarthy: I really love the
bluntness of the text and have a really soft spot for the post-apocalyptic
genre.
 
Career goal / Future plans: I hope to one day work in fixing urban education
in this country. I am interested in being a teacher, doing data analysis, or
working for a community organization, but I haven't decided for sure!
 
Honors Thesis or other research project: Art Synthesis: Culturally Relevant
Pedagogy and the Arts in Bay Area Public Schools
 
Other academic interests (major, minors): Education, Sociology, Computer
Science, Design, East Asian Studies
 
Extracurriculars: Leland Stanford Junior University Marching Band, Cooksey
Skate Club, Synergy
 
Something else you should know about me: I can hold my breath for a really
long time.
Portrait of Nicole Phillips

Nicole Phillips

Concentration:Urban Society and Social Change
Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
Year expecting to graduate:
Honors thesis or other research project:

Why I'm majoring in Urban Studies: I believe American Urban Spaces have to potential to incite real change across the board. I also believe that a large majority of America’s social issues are hyper-present in cities and if we can figure out a way to change the status quo in urban spaces those solutions can be modified for other spaces. This is why I love the major. I'm passionate about the hands-on, real-deal learning that is unique to Urban Studies.

 

Portrait of Micaela Suminski

Micaela Suminski

Concentration:Urban Society and Social Change
Hometown: Philadelphia, PA
Year expecting to graduate: 2015
Honors thesis or other research project:

Why I'm majoring (or minoring) in Urban Studies: It's the perfect major to study a combination of macro and micro patterns in people, history, politics, and more. I'd like to work in a field of social justice and cities are a hotbed of opportunities to do so.

What I like best about Urban Studies: The chance to study race relations and education amid the network of urban priorities like housing, politics, settlement, planning, and more.

Favorite class / professor (and why): Race, Policing, and Mass Incarceration, hosted by H. Samy Alim and Jennifer Eberhardt. The guests (including dream hampton and Talib Kweli!) during this seminar provided a wealth of knowledge, inspiration, and direction amid city riots, shootings of unarmed civilians, and national unrest.

Favorite book (and why): The Quiltmaker's Gift--I loved this book as a child.

The message is one of generosity and giving, and the artwork is beautiful to top it off. Also, The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander.

Career goal / Future plans: My dream job is to serve as the Secretary of Education for the United States, a city school chancellor, or the mayor of Philadelphia. (Lofty goals, I know.) Honors Thesis or other research project:

Other academic interests (major, minors): Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity, Education

Extracurriculars: Stanford Political Journal

Alternative Spring Break Leader

LSJUMB

Something else you should know about me: I'm really excited to study in Washington, DC this fall and Cape Town, South Africa this winter!