Capstone Projects

All urban studies concentrators must complete either an honors thesis or a capstone project. A capstone project can take several forms: an original research paper written for an urban studies seminar; an academically-supervised applied, artistic, or community service project; or an honors thesis with significant urban studies content written for a student’s other concentration.

Most capstones begin as an original research paper in a seminar, but students are also encouraged to use the capstone as an opportunity to reflect on their broader education in urban studies. For example, as part of their capstone project, Theresa O'Neill '10 and Corliss Gross '10 built on their summer UTRA experience to make a short film together on homeless tent cities in Providence during their senior year.  Titled Displaced (password: displaced2), the film tells the poignant story of homeless Rhode Islanders relocated after the demolition of the Welcome Arnold shelter in 2007 and again after the dismantling of two tent cities in 2009. Other urban studies concentrators have worked with local community organizations, held exhibitions, and designed urban planning proposals as part of their capstone projects.

Alex Lipinsky '13 (center), "Municipal Approaches to Urban Agriculture"Alex Lipinsky '13 (center), "Municipal Approaches to Urban Agriculture"

Students should inform the Director of Undergraduate Studies what their capstone will consist of by the second semester of their senior year. At the end of the Spring semester, all graduating seniors (including those set to graduate the following Fall) will briefly present their capstone project to peers and faculty in the Urban Studies Program. 


Honors Theses and Capstone Projects 2022

Watch the 2022 Honors Thesis and Capstone Presentations 

2022 Senior Capstones

Mary Arend, “Colonial Remembrance and Berlin’s Humboldt Forum” 

Bliss Beyer, “Herzog & de Meuron’s Parking Structure” 

Sophia Chan, Affordable Housing and Gentrification: Comparisons between Providence and Hong Kong” 

Jeremy Chan, “Dark Night on Kennedy Plaza” 

Nathaniel Hardy, “Project Schooner: The Municipal Politics Behind an Amazon Warehouse” 

Elana Hausknecht, “Who is the 'community' in Community MusicWorks?” 

Nicholas Hyland, Designing a Streetcar Network for Columbus, Ohio” 

Ryan Kim, “An Analysis of the Silver Line Extension in the Washington Metropolitan Area” 

Kendall Krantz, Intra-Community Shuttles: a ride towards car-free cities” 

Maia Kurvers, “Kennedy Plaza: How to Avoid Displacing Unhoused Community in Revitalization Efforts” 

Zoe Pottinger, “Mapping Mobility: Charting Access Zones in Proposed and Existing Subway Stations in New York City” 

Jasmine Powell, “Reckoning with the Past to Preserve Our Future: The Impact of Redlining on Birth Outcomes” 

Chaz Vest, “One World Trade Center: A long, winding, and decisively New York-style path to resiliency” 

Margreta Welch, Life after ‘American’: A Reflection on Societal Rifts in Contemporary USA” 

Thomas Wilson, Reimagining Dorothea Dix Park: Analyzing the Master Plan for Raleigh’s Keystone Park through Various Urban Frameworks”