University of Rochester

2006 Urban Fellows Report on Projects in Rochester's Neighborhoods

August 2, 2006

A graduation symposium for the Rochester community presented by Urban Fellows from Rochester and Rochester-area colleges will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 2, in the Council Chambers of City Hall. Guest speakers will include Mayor Robert Duffy and Council member Dana Miller.

This year's fellows will share their experiences and the results of their projects with nonprofit and government agencies throughout the city. Seventeen college students participated in the 10-week program run by Leadership Rochester, Rochester's premier leadership development program that is located at the University of Rochester. Leadership Rochester received funding for Urban Fellows from state Sen. Joseph Robach, the City of Rochester and the Enterprise Foundation.

The Urban Fellow Summer Internship Program, now in its fifth year, emphasizes civic engagement, promotes learning about urban issues and encourages a celebration and appreciation for cross-cultural issues and urban life. Through their experiences in the field, students discover Rochester and the possibilities for city livingó"a remedy for 'brain drain' from urban centers in New York State," said Josanne Reaves, executive director of Leadership Rochester.

Students, including eight from the University of Rochester, are placed in fields that include health care, education, public safety, women's issues, economic development, youth, the arts, and housing. They're on assignment four days each week at internship sites, and attend daylong seminars on Wednesdays designed to allow fellows to learn about history, politics, demographics, and the sociology of urban systems in the area.

Former and current Urban Fellows, many of whom are Rochester natives, have represented all seven area colleges as well as Alfred, Howard, Southern California, Harvard, Brandeis, Georgetown, Brown, Russell Sage, and Cornell universities, along with the University of Delaware and Wells, Mt. Holyoke, Ithaca and Vassar colleges.