Urban Affairs | Albright College

Urban Affairs

The majority of the world’s population resides in cities.  Many who do not reside there are employed in cities or depend on them for basic services such as health care, governance, arts/entertainment, and education.  Given these facts and cities’ powerful political, cultural economic and social roles, it is undeniable that cities play an integral role in the world.  Moreover, urbanization has continued to increase for over a century.

The urban affairs major engages the multidisciplinary study of such issues as the history of urbanization, economic influences on urban growth and development, political influences on and of the city, social/cultural causes and effects, and the interplay of each of these dynamics.    It is designed to provide analytic skills, theoretical frameworks, research methods, and substantive knowledge to initiate and evaluate constructive solutions to urban problems such as poverty and economic/political inequality, racial segregation, damage to the natural environment, and crime and corruption.  It intends to promote public service while launching socially and environmentally relevant careers. Students are trained for career opportunities in community development, urban planning and design, public policy, and the administration of public and private agencies including municipal administration, environmental management, housing, law, or social services.  Students are also prepared for graduate study in such fields as public policy and administration, urban design and planning, environmental planning, social welfare, public health, and law.

A specific advantage to Albright’s program is our proximity to Philadelphia, the District of Columbia, New York City and Baltimore, but even more significantly, we are located in an optimal sized city for student engagement.  Students can take advantage of Albright’s partnership with The Washington Center to earn college credit while serving semester long, or summer internships with institutions in Washington, D.C.  In addition, students can take advantage of the resources of the College’s Center for Excellence in Local Government and its many partnerships with departments within city government and local non-profits. Albright’s agreement with the University of Delaware, giving its graduates preferential admissions to the University of Delaware’s School of Urban Affairs and Public Policy, is also a significant asset of the program.

The curriculum is designed to have an introductory course (“Urban Politics” – POL220) to familiarize students with the range of issues in urban studies and contextualize the subsequent courses.  The major also includes an applied capstone course that serves to reinforce the integration of the intermediate courses.  Finally, full majors are asked to choose one of five areas of focus (or tracks) within urban affairs.  These three-course tracks will give students an expertise within a subfield of urban affairs.  Students are encouraged to undertake independent study, participate in study away, and become involved in community service projects.  A co-major and minor are also available in Urban Affairs.  The co-major does not include a track or sub-disciplinary specialty, since the alternate major would fill this role.

For more information, contact Dr. Kennon Rice in the Sociology Department.

All of the following core requirements:

  • ECO105 Principles of Economics
  • SOC101 Introduction to Sociology or ANT101 Introduction to Anthropology (required Social Science Foundations course)
  • POL220 Urban Politics
  • SOC210 Research Methods
  • ESS325 Geographical Information Systems
  • SOC211 Social Statistics (required Quantitative Reasoning Foundations course)
  • HIS322  The City in American History (Should HIS322 be unavailable, HIS206 Healthy Cities: Urban Public Health, HIS311 US Social History, HIS312 US Economic History, or HIS280: Living on Earth: Ecological Approaches to the American Past may be taken as substitutions)
  • ECO337 Public Finance and Policy or ECO224 Environmental Economics
  • POL214 Public Policy
  • URB490 Senior Seminar in Urban Affairs

Students must also complete ONE of the following tracks or specialties within Urban Affairs:

Human Services and Diversity Track/Specialty

 Complete three of the following:

  • ANT320 Sex/Gender/Culture
  • PHI135 Race, Class and Gender
  • PSY290 Diversity Issues
  • SOC203 Human Services for Families and Children
  • SOC261 The Family
  • SOC262 Social Stratification and Structured Inequality

Environment Track/Specialty                    

  • ESS 101 Introduction to Environmental Issues
  • Complete two of the following:
    • ANT/PSY 265 Ecological Psychology
    • ECO224 Environmental Economics
    • POL321 Environmental Policy
    • SOC291 Environmental Sociology
    • SOC251 Crime and Deviance

Crime Track/Specialty

  • SOC251 Crime and Deviance
  • Complete two of the following:
    • ANT310 Crime, Culture, and Conflict Resolution
    • SOC202 The Criminal Justice System
    • SOC302 Juvenile Delinquency
    • SOC305 Terrorism
    • SOC307 Organized Crime
    • SOC311 Domestic Violence
    • SOC360 Crime and the Media
    • SOC385 Violence and Victims

Communications Track/Specialty

  • COM250 Mass Communications and Society or SOC331 Mass Media and Pop Culture
  • Complete two of the following:
    • COM315 Public Affairs Reporting
    • COM317 Public Relations and Advertising Campaign Planning
    • COM327 Public Relations Writing
    • SOC360 Crime and the Media

Ethics and Law Track/Specialty

Complete three of the following:

  • BUS250 Business Law
  • POL331 Criminal Law
  • POL372 Civil Liberties
  • COM320 Freedom of Expression
  • PHI135 Race, Class and Gender
  • PHI140 Individual and Society
  • PHI 203 Ethics or PHI 250 Business Ethics or PHI 270 Environmental Ethics
  • PHI204 Contemporary Moral Problems

 

Combining Urban Affairs with other Majors 

Requirements:

  • SOC101 Introduction to Sociology or ANT101 Introduction to Anthropology (required Social Science Foundations course)
  • ECO105 Principles of Economics
  • POL220 Urban Politics
  • SOC210 Research Methods
  • SOC211 Social Statistics (required Quantitative Reasoning Foundations course)
  • ESS325 Geographical Information Systems
  • ECO 337 Public Finance and Policy or ECO 224 Environmental Economics
  • Senior Seminar

 

Urban Affairs Minor:

The Urban Affairs Minor engages the multidisciplinary study of such issues as the history of urbanization, economic influences on urban growth and development, political influences on and of the city, social/cultural causes and effects, and the interplay of each of these dynamics.    It is designed to provide analytic skills, theoretical frameworks, research methods, and substantive knowledge to initiate and evaluate constructive solutions to urban problems such as poverty and economic/political inequality, racial segregation, damage to the natural environment, and crime and corruption.  More information about urban studies can be found under the listing for the major in Urban Affairs.

 

Requirements:

 

  • SOC101 Introduction to Sociology or ANT101 Introduction to Anthropology (required Social Science Foundations course)
  • POL220 Urban Politics
  • POL214 Public Policy or ECO 337 Public Finance and Policy
  • HIS322 The City in American History (Should HIS322 be unavailable, HIS206 Urban Public Health, HIS311 US Social History, HIS312 US Economic History, or HIS280: Living on Earth: Ecological Approaches to the American Past may be taken as substitutions)
  • ESS325 Geographical Information Systems or SOC210 Research Methods

urban-affairs

Charles Brown, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Sociology; Department Chair
610-921-7865
cbrown@albright.edu

urban-affairs

Carla Abodalo, MS
Senior Instructor of Sociology
610-921-7592
cabodalo@albright.edu

urban-affairs

Brian Jennings, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Sociology
610-921-7892
bjennings@albright.edu

urban-affairs

Elizabeth Kiester, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Sociology
610-921-7885
ekiester@albright.edu

urban-affairs

Kennon Rice, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Sociology
610-921-7881
krice@albright.edu

urban-affairs

Barton Thompson, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Sociology
610-921-7593
bthompson@albright.edu

urban-affairs

Teri Jensen-Sellers, M.A.
Adjunct Lecturer in Sociology
610-929-6729
tjensen-sellers@albright.edu

urban-affairs

Adrienne Lodge, M.S., C.F.E., C.A.M.S.
Adjunct Lecturer in Sociology-Criminal Justice
610-929-6768
alodge@albright.edu