MA in Urban Studies Alumni News!

Several of our Alumni had exciting news to share this month! Victor Gimenez is a graduate from the MA in Urban Studies with a concentration in Youth Development, class of 2009.  He has been appointed to serve as pastor at Union Memorial United Methodist Church in Darby, PA. Aleea Slappy is a graduate from the MA in Urban Studies with a concentration in Community Development, class of 2009.  She has served over five years with The Enterprise Center, most recently as the Director of Training and Education, but she has recently accepted a position at the DC Women’s Business Center. Rashana Miller is a graduate from the MA in Urban Studies with a concentration in Youth Development, class of 2013.  Rashana has been promoted from the position of Assistant...

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Why the MA in Urban Studies, Community Arts concentration?

Hannah Poon shares about her experience in the MA in Urban Studies with a concentration in Community Arts.  Are you ready to enter the realm of community art making?  Learn more and start an application at www.eastern.edu/urbanstudies.              

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Reflections on the MA in Urban Studies by Ashleigh Bynum

This week I completed my first year of the MA in Urban Studies program at Eastern University. While I must admit this year has been challenging, I have enjoyed my learning experience so far. Making the decision to apply to graduate school was difficult for me. While I was looking forward to learning more about community development, I was not very excited about the work, especially writing papers, taking exams, and the idea of pulling all-nighters. However, as I finished my final months of Mission Year, I realized the Urban Studies program offered me an opportunity to make a difference in my community and lives of others. This motivated me to see beyond the school work, to the importance of having the necessary tools to make lasting and effective change. One of...

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Meet the Class of 2014

Meet the Class of 2014

Graduation time has arrived, and 19 students graduated on Saturday, May 10th, from the Master of Arts in Urban Studies program.  Hailing from across the North American Continent, the class of 2014 has brought a vast array of life experience, contributing to the rich program experience found while pursuing this degree.  The research interests of this class range from serving foster care youth, to equal food access, to assessment practices, to the criminal and juvenile justice system, to immigration reform, to urban and suburban farming.  Despite their diversity of experience and interest, these students have been bonded by a common desire to bring transformation to communities, to specifically empower the most vulnerable.  On May 7th, the graduates presented...

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Public Transportation in Philadelphia

Philadelphia is the 5th most efficient public transportation system in the United States but has plans for an overall improvement of the system.  Some steps to move forward in public transportation include new Payment Technologies and Bike Share.  Following one of the most snowy winters, the public transportation system has received more attention than previous years. Suggestions for improvement have included giving SEPTA buses priority of the green light, stops at every other block and not every block, and adding more L shaped routes. While these suggestions may bring improvements to some communities, such as center city and University City, there are other factors to consider for the greater community. And so we welcome Bike Share. The Bike Share originated in...

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5 de Mayo by Erica Cuellar

5 de Mayo and Mexican Independence Day are two separate holidays and moments in history of which Mexicans are very proud. No there is no such thing as two Mexican Independence Days. What many people don’t realize is that Mexican Independence Day is actually on September 16th, which is also known as “El Grito de Dolores” which translates into the “cry of Dolores.” Dolores (also translated into pain) refers to the city in Mexico where the long battle of 11 years all began. “El Grito De Dolores” refers to the ringing of a bell by Father Miguel Hidalgo proclaiming the fight for justice and dignity as they persevered for their independence from Spanish rule. This holiday is often celebrated beginning September 15th, the date when the conspiracy was...

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Street Harassment by Ashleigh Bynum

I met with a friend this week for breakfast, at a restaurant in West Philadelphia. Prior to our meeting, I had just walked through a neighborhood in North Philadelphia that I had visited for the weekend. As I walked from one end of the block to the other, I noticed a young man and two of his friends sitting on a front stoop. As I walked past, I quietly nodded and gave a slight smile, as if to recognize them sitting there, which was all I intended for this interaction; however, my new friends thought differently. As I passed their stoop, the boys proceeded to shout obscenities, not one of  them daring to come down to approach me. So I reacted, as I typically do in this instance, by ignoring their antics and continuing on my way. By the time I made it to breakfast...

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