Summer Community Service Fellowship (for GSD Students)

Joint Center for Housing Studies Community Service Fellowship
In collaboration with the Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD), the Joint Center for Housing Studies is offering Community Service Fellowships for GSD students. The mission of the GSD's Community Service Fellowship Program (CSFP) is to expose students to new challenges and methods of working, and to encourage them to explore connections between the academic interests they pursue at School and the practitioner’s vocation to understand and address existing challenges faced by communities both locally (in the Boston area), nationally (elsewhere in the US), and internationally. The Program also provides summer funding to support students as they gain relevant work experience. Read about the experience of previous recipients on the Community Service Fellowship blog.

The JCHS Community Service Fellowship for GSD students will support students obtaining internships or other volunteer opportunities with organizations whose work focuses on housing, the built environment, and/or community development.

GSD students from all concentrations are eligible to apply for funding to work in a nonprofit or public sector setting, in Massachusetts, or in other US cities and regions. Funding is available to support 10-week internships across a wide spectrum of possible entities, including but not limited to:

  • Municipal or regional planning departments or offices
  • Housing or Redevelopment Authorities
  • Federal or state agencies (eg. HUD, DHCD)
  • National non profit intermediaries (eg. LISC, Enterprise)
  • Local community service organizations and/or community development corporations
  • Research and advocacy organizations (eg. National Low Income Housing Coalition, CHAPA)

The application deadline is in March 8, 2019.

The 2018 JCHS Summer Community Service Fellows were:

  • Maura Barry-Garland, a Master in Urban Planning student, who is working on three affordable housing projects being carried out by the South Boston Neighborhood Development Corporation.
  • Gloria Chang, a Master in Architecture and Master in Design Studies student, with a focus on risk and resilience, is working at the U.S. Naval War College's Civilian-Military Humanitarian Response Program in Newport, Rhode Island.
  • Francisco Colom, a Master in Design Studies student, with a focus on critical conservation, who is working at the MASS Design Group, a non-profit in Boston that aims to research, build, and advocate for architecture that promotes justice and human dignity.
  • Katie Gourley, a Master in Urban Planning student, who is working at the Mayor's Internship Program in Philadelphia on Rebuild Philadelphia, a $500 million program to revitalize the city's neighborhood parks, recreation centers, playgrounds, and libraries.
  • Christin Hu, a Master in Landscape Architecture student, who is working as a designer at YouthBuild Boston, a non-profit that provides underserved young people with the support and credentials needed to successfully enter the building trades.
  • Maria de la Luz Lobos Martinez, a Master in Landscape Architecture student, who is working with the Livable Streets Alliance and the Southwest Boston CDC on the Emerald Necklace Initiative, which aims to enhance connectivity and walkability and improve access to the Neponset River in Boston's Hyde Park and Roslindale neighborhoods.
  • Emma Phillips, a Master in Urban Planning student, who is helping design a new urban garden for the Garden School Foundation, which offers garden-based learning in outdoor living classrooms for underserved youth in Los Angeles. 
  • Gabriel Ramos, a Master in Urban Planning student, who is working at the Africatown Preservation & Development Association, a Seattle-based non-profit that is developing strategies for documenting and preserving the African American presence in that city's Central District and surrounding communities.
  • Juan Reynoso, a Master in Urban Planning student, who is working on housing-related issues in the Office of California Assemblyman Todd Gloria (D-San Diego).
  • Chandra Rouse, a Master in Urban Planning student, who is working as an Economic Development Intern with the South East Chicago Commission, a community-based organization focused on enhancing the quality of life in five of that city's neighborhoods.

The Summer 2017 Joint Center for Housing Studies Community Service Fellows were

  • Matt Genova (Master in Urban Planning) assisted with several projects around the implementation of nMotion, Nashville's, 25-year transportation plan.
  • Miriam Keller (Master in Urban Planning) assisted the National Low Income Housing Coalition in Washington, DC on efforts to educate federal lawmakers about housing needs and efforts to analyze and shape policy proposals.
  • Casey Peterson (Master in Urban Planning) worked at the New York City Department of City Planning (DCP) in the Waterfront & Open Space Division where she conducted an extensive analysis of New York City's current and future floodplain, taking stock of the various building typologies and land uses along the waterfront. This data will be used by DCP as the agency engages community boards across the city in the process of updating the zoning text for the floodplain. In conducting this research, she enhanced her skills in GIS and Excel and gained an appreciation for the rigor DCP applies to its research. During the course of the internship, Casey also assisted in producing graphic materials for community zoning workshops and for City of Water Day, an annual event hosted by the Waterfront Alliance.
  • Leah Pickett (Master in Urban Planning) worked at the New York City Department of Housing Preservation & Development's (HPD) Division of Property Disposition and Finance. As an intern with the Director of Land Disposition, Leah worked on a disposition strategy for a portfolio of HPD owned properties. In particular, she researched the viability of the community land trust (CLT) model. She approached this question from a few different angles: working on underwriting models, researching CLT best practices and case studies around the United States, and helping to identify and address persistent strategic questions within HPD. Ultimately, she produced a memo on the "value add" of CLTs and supported the development of a CLT framework for the City of New York.
  • Claire Summers (Master in Urban Planning) worked in Boston’s Department of Neighborhood Development on a variety projects, including research and identification of potential locations for non-profit development of affordable housing.
  • Katherine Wolf (Master in Urban Planning) worked with the Boston Planning & Development Agency on recent initiatives in the Glover’s Corner neighborhood of Dorchester. Kate worked with the Community Planning Team on the recent launch of the Glover's Corner Study Area, known as PLAN: Glover's Corner. She was tasked with designing and a community engagement activity for an upcoming public meeting, and creating a summary of "progress-to-date" to update residents on what had been accomplished in terms of the planning timeline. Kate also produced a white paper including precedent research on climate resiliency, specifically surface stormwater conveyance as public open space. This research was adapted to a slide presentation to be used at a fall community public meeting.
  • Jessica Yuan (Master in Architecture I) worked with the Construction Open Space group at Boston’s Department of Neighborhood Development on several projects including updating research on housing typologies for affordable housing developments. She worked on a few projects, including several presentations for community meeetings, design reviews for ongoing projects, revisions of the department's prototype houses, and research and graphics for guidelines and policies. She aided in ongoing revisions to the department's Design Guidelines, and produced a final document which incorporates best practices for unit layouts and kitchens. Jessica also worked with a Housing Innovation Lab fellow, Riddhi Shah, on producing unit layout graphics for a proposed microunit policy. She collaborated on the design guidelines for the policy, basing them off of existing DND guidelines. She also helped with the Neighborhood Homes Initiative (NHI), which uses a set of prototype homes for infill development on city owned lots. Jessica contributed several revisions to these prototypes, as well as reviewed permit drawings for ongoing NHI projects. Her design work also included creating a preliminary site strategy for a large set of parcels in Mattapan, a project which was a collaboration with two interns from the Real Estate Management and Sales team.