Field Trip to Rochester Offers Students a Sampling of Local Planning Careers

November 1, 2013

In mid-October, the Organization of Urban and Regional Studies (OURS) arranged a daytrip to Rochester, New York, for a group of undergraduate students in the Urban and Regional Studies (URS) program.

The group began the day at the Rochester Downtown Development Corporation, a nonprofit economic development firm, where they met with Jason Haremza, senior planner and urban design specialist for the City of Rochester. CRP Visiting Lecturer George Frantz then led the group on a walking tour of the Park Avenue neighborhood in southeast Rochester. Known for its vibrant mix of local shops and restaurants, pocket parks, and historic buildings and residences, Park Avenue was recently voted the best neighborhood in the city by readers of Rochester's City Newspaper.

The students also traveled to the South Wedge neighborhood to meet with Tanya Mooza Zwahlen (M.R.P. '03), president of Highland Planning, a consulting firm she founded in 2007. Highland Planning focuses on urban revitalization, transportation planning, public outreach, and program implementation. The group heard from George Moses, executive director of Group 14621 Community Association and North East Area Development (NEAD). Moses's organizations seek to improve the quality of life in northeast neighborhoods by enhancing education, employment, housing, and recreation opportunities for residents. The day ended with a tour of downtown Rochester by Erik Frisch, transportation specialist for the City of Rochester.

The trip to Rochester provided URS students with an opportunity to see a range of careers within the planning field. OURS, an organization representing URS students, aims to foster community among students while providing a wider perspective on the professional aspects of planning. They sponsor a number of educational events every year.

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