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Thursday, March 17 • 9:15am - 10:40am
TH9.15.05 Promise of Urban Fellowships for Building Capacity in Distressed Communities—Place Based Policy Lessons From the Field

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Urban fellowship programs have been around for decades starting with initial investments from the Ford Foundation in the 1960s, but the academic literature says very little about how fellowship can serve as agents of local policy change or help build community capacity. Based on a 2015 assessment of the Strong Cities, Strong Communities (SC2) Fellowship program (2012-2015), this roundtable will explore the “promise of urban fellowships” as a critical component of federal placed-based urban policy to enhance and expand the capacity of local governments and community based organizations in distressed communities. To frame the discussion SC2 fellowship management and evaluation team members will share the results from their program evaluation and position it within the expanding academic and practitioner interest in federal place based urban policy. They will also feature their extensive research about the emerging field of urban fellowship—a typology of fellowship programs—informed by a November 2014 symposium convened at the Urban Institute that brought together program directors and fellows from other leading fellowship programs (e.g., Detroit Revitalizations Fellows, Washington DC’s Capital Cities Fellows, and CUREx) together with the SC2 fellows. Important questions surfaced during the symposium will help inform the colloquy’s discussion: 1) How do urban fellowship programs define success? 2) What is the structure and process for selecting, placing, and managing the fellows? 3) How do fellows develop support networks and how do local networks support the fellows: 4) How to measure and evaluating the impact and influence of urban fellows? and 5) How to scale and sustain urban fellowship programs over time?

avatar for Lauren Bulka

Lauren Bulka

Strategic Initiative Coordinator, Virginia Tech - National Capital Region

Graig Donnelly

Director, Detroit Revitalization Fellows, Wayne State University

Kathryn Hexter

Cleveland State University
avatar for Gretchen Moore

Gretchen Moore

Executive Director, Downtown Fresno Foundation
I have nearly two decades of diverse experience specializing in community engagement, commercial revitalization, non-profit management and coalition-building. The Downtown Fresno Foundation is dedicated to building a vibrant downtown through placemaking, talent retention/attraction... Read More →

Walter Wright

Program Manager for Economic Inclusion, Cleveland State University


Kathryn Hexter

Cleveland State University

Thursday March 17, 2016 9:15am - 10:40am PDT
Indigo 204B