A factory on Cleveland’s Cuyahoga River. (Image: Elisabeth Benham)

This semester, approximately 45 students in the Department of City and Regional Planning took a three-day field trip to Cleveland to bond with each other and learn the inner workings of American urbanism firsthand. After the weekend, fearless field trip co-leader Linda Shi, assistant professor in the department, asked the class to reflect on what they saw.

The five essays linked below display a wide range of reactions to Cleveland, informed both by the diverse experiences of the writers as well as readings from Professor Shi’s required class for MRPs. That course, Introduction to Planning Practice and History, exposes first-year students to urban planning theory and issues in the U.S. and abroad. Check it out:

Elisabeth Benham, MRP 2020
Hometown: Bloomfield Hills, Michigan
Academic interests: housing and international studies

Joel Hochman, MRP 2020
Hometown: New York City
Academic interests: community/neighborhood development, international/comparative planning, transportation, public space, and affordable housing

Jon Ignatowski, MRP 2020
Hometown: Canton, New York
Academic interests: rural land use planning and community development

Chin Ya Russell, MRP 2020
Hometown: Koahsiung, Taiwan
Academic interest: academic institutional planning for higher education

Minh Tran, MRP 2020
Hometown: Hanoi, Vietnam
Academic interests: land use and international development

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