Your School, Your Choice!

Making Policy Public

Your School, Your Choice!

Carbon City

City Studies

Carbon City

What Is Mandatory Inclusionary Housing?

Envisioning Development

What Is Mandatory Inclusionary Housing?

Shine a Light on Your Utility Rights

Making Policy Public

Shine a Light on Your Utility Rights

Welcome to Health Care!

Making Policy Public

Welcome to Health Care!

What Does It Mean To Live In My Own Place?

Making Policy Public

What Does It Mean To Live In My Own Place?

Participants by Project

Christine Gaspar

Christine Gaspar

Christine is the Executive Director of CUP. She has over fifteen years of experience in community design. Prior to joining ... more

Christine Gaspar

Christine is the Executive Director of CUP. She has over fifteen years of experience in community design. Prior to joining CUP, she was Assistant Director of the Gulf Coast Community Design Studio in Biloxi, Mississippi, where she provided architectural design and city planning services to low-income communities recovering from Hurricane Katrina. In 2012, she was identified as one of the “Public Interest Design 100.” She holds Masters in Architecture and in City Planning from MIT, and a Bachelor of Arts from Brown University.

She’s been a CUP fan since 2001, and a staff member since 2009.

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Mark Torrey

Mark Torrey

Mark Torrey is a Community Education Program Manager for CUP, working on Making Policy Public and the Envisioning ... more

Mark Torrey

Mark Torrey is a Community Education Program Manager for CUP, working on Making Policy Public and the Envisioning Development Toolkits. Previously he spent a good long while working as an Information Technology Specialist (computer guy) at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, but then decided to firm up his understanding of cities by getting a Masters in City and Regional Planning from Cornell University. He wears his pants in the Highwater fashion, which most of the CUP staff find to be ridiculous, but it keeps his pants from getting caught in the bike chain.

He has been a CUP staff member since 2011.

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Hatuey Ramos Fermín

Hatuey Ramos Fermín

Hatuey Ramos Fermín is an educator and multimedia artist who uses photography, video, installation, ... more

Hatuey Ramos Fermín

Hatuey Ramos Fermín is an educator and multimedia artist who uses photography, video, installation, graphics, performance, intervention, maps, sounds, and social and curatorial practices to creatively investigate issues related to urban space. His work is informed by the documentary and the fine arts.

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Christine Gaspar

Christine Gaspar

Christine is the Executive Director of CUP. She has over fifteen years of experience in community design. Prior to joining ... more

Christine Gaspar

Christine is the Executive Director of CUP. She has over fifteen years of experience in community design. Prior to joining CUP, she was Assistant Director of the Gulf Coast Community Design Studio in Biloxi, Mississippi, where she provided architectural design and city planning services to low-income communities recovering from Hurricane Katrina. In 2012, she was identified as one of the “Public Interest Design 100.” She holds Masters in Architecture and in City Planning from MIT, and a Bachelor of Arts from Brown University.

She’s been a CUP fan since 2001, and a staff member since 2009.

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Prudence Katze

Prudence Katze

Prudence Katze arrived in New York from Memphis, TN in 2004. Since then, she has graduated from the Cooper Union, and has ... more

Prudence Katze

Prudence Katze arrived in New York from Memphis, TN in 2004. Since then, she has graduated from the Cooper Union, and has been working with projects that examine our urban ecology. She started working with CUP as an Education Intern in 2009 and has assisted Hatuey Ramos-Fermin with both the “I Heart East New York” and “Who Benefits from Community Benefits Agreements at the Kingsbridge Armory” Urban Investigations. Prudence also taught a workshop with students from the Resilience Advocacy Project, and produced the resulting book “The Road to Cash Assistance.”

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Leslie McBeth

Leslie McBeth

Leslie McBeth is an educator who doesn’t like classrooms.  She spends most of her time as a high school teacher ... more

Leslie McBeth

Leslie McBeth is an educator who doesn’t like classrooms.  She spends most of her time as a high school teacher in Toronto taking students out of the school building and into the community.  Leslie coordinates the school’s Service Learning program, which sees 200 students volunteering in their community every week.  As a member of the Radical Education Research Collective (RERC), Leslie exchanges ideas with educators who believe the future of learning will be radically different.  In her former life in New York City, Leslie was an advocate for improving public space and civic engagement as part of the dynamic team at the Design Trust for Public Space.

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Valeria Mogilevich

Valeria Mogilevich

Valeria is a visual storyteller who creates tools for participation in collaboration with social justice organizations. She ... more

Valeria Mogilevich

Valeria is a visual storyteller who creates tools for participation in collaboration with social justice organizations. She also consults with cultural institutions, education non-profits, and others on community engagement and youth education. Valeria was formerly the Deputy Director of CUP, where over the course of eight years she created popular education tools with community-based organizations and developed curricula to help public high school students change the way the see their own neighborhoods. She has shared her thoughts on project-based learning, collaboration, and design for social impact at places like the New Museum, the Cooper-Hewitt, Pratt Institute, and institutions from Indianapolis to Rotterdam. Valeria holds a Bachelor of Arts from Brown University in Modern Culture and Media.

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Zach Postone

Zach Postone

Zach Postone is interested in neighborhood planning, community gardens, climate change politics, and technologies of the ... more

Zach Postone

Zach Postone is interested in neighborhood planning, community gardens, climate change politics, and technologies of the future.  He’s originally from Berkeley, CA, and studied Political Science and Art at Swarthmore College. As an intern at CUP, Zach was involved with several CUP projects, including “What the Cell?”, the Soda Census, and the Zoning Toolkit.

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Fielding Hong

Fielding Hong

Fielding is a Youth Education Program Manager at CUP. He has over 10 years of experience as a youth educator working at the ... more

Fielding Hong

Fielding is a Youth Education Program Manager at CUP. He has over 10 years of experience as a youth educator working at the intersections of history, the arts, and social justice. Fielding has worked as both a high school history teacher in Philadelphia and a museum educator in New York. He holds a B.A. in Film Studies from Wesleyan University, a teaching degree from the University of Pennsylvania, and a Master’s in Culture and Gender Studies from Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea. 

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Caits Meissner

Caits Meissner

Caits Meissner is a New York City-based writer, multidisciplinary creator and educator. She is the author of the ... more

Caits Meissner

Caits Meissner is a New York City-based writer, multidisciplinary creator and educator. She is the author of the illustrated hybrid poetry book Let It Die Hungry (The Operating System, 2016), and The Letter All Your Friends Have Written You (Well&Often, 2012), co-written with poet Tishon Woolcock. She has taught, consulted and co-created extensively for over 15 years across a wide spectrum of communities, with a special focus on imprisoned people, women and youth. Caits holds a BFA in Communication Design from Pratt Institute, and an MFA in Creative Writing from the City College of New York. She currently serves as the Prison and Justice Writing Program Manager at PEN America.

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Christine Gaspar

Christine Gaspar

Christine is the Executive Director of CUP. She has over fifteen years of experience in community design. Prior to joining ... more

Christine Gaspar

Christine is the Executive Director of CUP. She has over fifteen years of experience in community design. Prior to joining CUP, she was Assistant Director of the Gulf Coast Community Design Studio in Biloxi, Mississippi, where she provided architectural design and city planning services to low-income communities recovering from Hurricane Katrina. In 2012, she was identified as one of the “Public Interest Design 100.” She holds Masters in Architecture and in City Planning from MIT, and a Bachelor of Arts from Brown University.

She’s been a CUP fan since 2001, and a staff member since 2009.

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Valeria Mogilevich

Valeria Mogilevich

Valeria is a visual storyteller who creates tools for participation in collaboration with social justice organizations. She ... more

Valeria Mogilevich

Valeria is a visual storyteller who creates tools for participation in collaboration with social justice organizations. She also consults with cultural institutions, education non-profits, and others on community engagement and youth education. Valeria was formerly the Deputy Director of CUP, where over the course of eight years she created popular education tools with community-based organizations and developed curricula to help public high school students change the way the see their own neighborhoods. She has shared her thoughts on project-based learning, collaboration, and design for social impact at places like the New Museum, the Cooper-Hewitt, Pratt Institute, and institutions from Indianapolis to Rotterdam. Valeria holds a Bachelor of Arts from Brown University in Modern Culture and Media.

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Oscar Nuñez

Oscar Nuñez

Oscar is a Community Education Program Manager at CUP. He is a graduate of the City and Regional Planning ... more

Oscar Nuñez

Oscar is a Community Education Program Manager at CUP. He is a graduate of the City and Regional Planning Master’s Program at Pratt Institute with a concentration on Community Development. While completing his studies at Pratt, Oscar worked and interned in various local community organizations and groups, including CUP, on issues dealing with planning, design, and community education and engagement. Previously, he received a B.A. in Sociology and Latin American Studies from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada.  Originally from Tegucigalpa, Honduras, he moved to Washington, D.C. at a young age. He is fluent in English, Spanish, and French and can give pretty good directions in Portuguese.

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Jenn Anne Williams

Jenn Anne Williams

Jenn was CUP’s Youth Education Program Manager. With a strong belief that all youths deserve equitable access to ... more

Jenn Anne Williams

Jenn was CUP’s Youth Education Program Manager. With a strong belief that all youths deserve equitable access to the arts, Jenn has developed inclusive programs, published curriculum guides, and trained educators in how to use the arts as a tool for understanding, development, and social change with over 100 New York City public schools and community based organizations.  Jenn continues her pursuit of art as a tool for empowerment as a practicing artist, designer, educator, and administrator implementing high-quality, interdisciplinary art programs. You can follow her creative pursuits at artjawdesigns.com.

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Dillon de Give

Dillon de Give

Dillon de Give is an artist and educator who acts in a spirit of humane experimentalism. His projects set a stage ... more

Dillon de Give

Dillon de Give is an artist and educator who acts in a spirit of humane experimentalism. His projects set a stage for subtle alterations to everyday social performances and expose novel and equitable methods for distributing an experience of art. Dillon holds a BS in Radio/Television/Film from Northwestern University and an MFA in Art and Social Practice from Portland State University.  He is a co-founder of the Walk Exchange, a cooperative walking group. He organizes the annual Coyote Walk Itinerancy, a retreat that traces a path between New York City and the wild.  Dillon worked with CUP to produce the videos “Common Cents,” “Now Boarding,” and “Who Rules?”

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Fielding Hong

Fielding Hong

Fielding is a Youth Education Program Manager at CUP. He has over 10 years of experience as a youth educator working at the ... more

Fielding Hong

Fielding is a Youth Education Program Manager at CUP. He has over 10 years of experience as a youth educator working at the intersections of history, the arts, and social justice. Fielding has worked as both a high school history teacher in Philadelphia and a museum educator in New York. He holds a B.A. in Film Studies from Wesleyan University, a teaching degree from the University of Pennsylvania, and a Master’s in Culture and Gender Studies from Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea. 

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Ilaria Ortensi

Ilaria Ortensi

Ilaria Ortensi is an artist and art educator with an interest in architecture, urban landscape and the representation of ... more

Ilaria Ortensi

Ilaria Ortensi is an artist and art educator with an interest in architecture, urban landscape and the representation of contemporary spaces. She uses both documentation and fiction to create images that viewers are encouraged to question. Born in Italy, she received her MFA from Columbia University in 2015 and is currently part of the Hercules Art/Studio Program in Long Island City, NY.

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Leigh Taylor

Leigh Taylor

Leigh is CUP’s Development & Program Coordinator. She is a recent graduate from Bard College, where she studied ... more

Leigh Taylor

Leigh is CUP’s Development & Program Coordinator. She is a recent graduate from Bard College, where she studied Sociology with a focus on Gender & Labor. Following college, Leigh has worked for organizations invested in social justice education for young people, specifically youth from historically marginalized communities. She is involved in movements of justice for domestic workers, incarcerated folks, and young people of color. She is excited to work with CUP to create accessible tools for people from communities like hers.

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Clara Amenyo

Clara Amenyo

Clara was the Program Manager for CUP’s Public Access Design program from 2012 to 2014. Before coming to CUP, she ... more

Clara Amenyo

Clara was the Program Manager for CUP’s Public Access Design program from 2012 to 2014. Before coming to CUP, she worked in Structured Credit for Barclays Capital. Clara has a Bachelor of the Arts from the University of Pennsylvania.

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 Damayan Migrant Workers Association

Damayan Migrant Workers Association

DAMAYAN is a 10-year old grassroots, membership-based organization of low-income Filipino im/migrant workers, primarily ... more

Damayan Migrant Workers Association

DAMAYAN is a 10-year old grassroots, membership-based organization of low-income Filipino im/migrant workers, primarily women domestic workers. DAMAYAN organizes Filipino workers to defend their rights and to understand and challenge the root causes of forced migration and poverty. Through its programs and campaigns, DAMAYAN has effectively addressed exploitation, health problems and gender violence against Filipino women domestic workers. It uses solid organizing to combine political analysis and education with services, basebuilding, leadership development, and advocacy. It is a democratic organization with a wide base of over 800 members and an elected Board of Directors of all women domestic workers. DAMAYAN worked with CUP on Work Forced, a video about the labor trafficking of Filipino domestic workers.

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Christine Gaspar

Christine Gaspar

Christine is the Executive Director of CUP. She has over fifteen years of experience in community design. Prior to joining ... more

Christine Gaspar

Christine is the Executive Director of CUP. She has over fifteen years of experience in community design. Prior to joining CUP, she was Assistant Director of the Gulf Coast Community Design Studio in Biloxi, Mississippi, where she provided architectural design and city planning services to low-income communities recovering from Hurricane Katrina. In 2012, she was identified as one of the “Public Interest Design 100.” She holds Masters in Architecture and in City Planning from MIT, and a Bachelor of Arts from Brown University.

She’s been a CUP fan since 2001, and a staff member since 2009.

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Raj Kottamasu

Raj Kottamasu

Raj Kottamasu is an artist, designer and urban planner. His work includes animation, print & web design, illustration, ... more

Raj Kottamasu

Raj Kottamasu is an artist, designer and urban planner. His work includes animation, print & web design, illustration, design research and cultural programming for organizations including The Architectural League of New York, Public Policy Lab, The Participatory Budgeting Project, and the NYC Department of Parks & Recreation. Raj also currently teaches Information Graphics in the Programs for Sustainable Planning & Development at Pratt Institute. He served as a Public Access Design Fellow in 2012, producing the animated video ‘Work Forced’ in collaboration with CUP and Damayan Migrant Workers Association.  He holds a Master’s degree in City Planning, with a certificate in Urban Design, from MITrajworks.com

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Displaced From This Place?

Urban Investigations

Displaced From This Place?

Ready, Set, Apply!

Technical Assistance

Ready, Set, Apply!

The Deciders

City Studies

The Deciders

We Own It

Making Policy Public

Welcome to Health Care!

Making Policy Public

Welcome to Health Care!

Safe Space?

City Studies

Safe Space?

What Is Affordable Housing?

Envisioning Development

What Is Affordable Housing?

Ready, Set, Apply!

Technical Assistance

Ready, Set, Apply!