Hometown: Davenport, Iowa
Year expecting to graduate: 2019
Concentration in Urban Studies: Urban Society and Social Change Urban Studies is my: major Why I'm majoring (or minoring) in Urban Studies: Urban Studies offers a super comprehensive lens on contemporary societal issues and injustices, and what we can do about them. Coming into college, my goal was to best understand the world and what my role in contributing to progressive change should be and this community has been a great place to do it. The classes, professors, and other outside opportunities cover everything from sociology and history to urban design and politics: I love the combination of broad, macro-level learning with specific, practical learning. I've been able to apply what I've learned to work in economic development, urban planning, policy research, and community organizing. I plan to be involved in grassroots-based, scalable social change in the future, and I feel that understanding complex systems at the city level is the best way to do this.
What I like best about Urban Studies: The tight-knit community of students, professors, and alumni allow you to be easily heard and supported by others with similar interests. I’ve found everyone in the Urban Studies community to be kind, open, and deeply curious.
Favorite class / professor (and why): Overall, Gandhi in His Time and Ours with Aishwary Kumar, because the way we broke down Gandhi’s ideology totally blew my mind and challenged many of my long-held beliefs. In Urban Studies, probably the Urban Underclass with Michael Rosenfeld: it’s a very well-taught class and it covers some pretty essential aspects of urban studies using Chicago’s history of racial discrimination, residential segregation, urban “renewal,” and federally-subsidized suburbanization.
Favorite book (and why): Probably a tie between The Count of Monte Cristo and One Hundred Years of Solitude.
Career goal / Future plans: I have no set or clear idea of what I'll be doing in the future, but here's one possibility: I would love to work in community development, as a sort of urban consultant who travels to different cities to learn about their challenges (housing, food deserts, climate adaptation) and to connect stakeholders while suggesting urban design interventions and grassroots, collective responses.
Honors Thesis or other research project: I'm working on a senior project on Complete Streets based on research I conducted in my hometown, as well as an independent project where I'm combining an overview of major societal issues and a blueprint for society in the future.
Other academic interests (major, minors): History minor, focused on radical revolutions
Los Salseros de Stanford, Community Manager of Outdoor House, ultimate frisbee, environmental justice advocacy