Global, Urban, and Environmental Studies (GLUE)

Urban Studies

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Approximately half the world’s population lives in urban areas. In industrialized countries, such as the United States, less than a quarter of the population remains rural. What does this mean for students at an urban university? Notwithstanding the effects of globalization, most of our work, living, and recreational spaces, cultural institutions, ethical development, and commercial activities exist within the context of cities and their surrounding metropolitan regions.

Raising basic questions about the dynamics of modern life — for example, how living in New York City differs from living in Los Angeles, Berlin, Johannesburg, or Rio de Janeiro — Urban Studies is designed for both the student who wants to think critically about the urban setting and the student who seeks graduate training or a career in education, law, community development, journalism, urban management, public policy, or public health. Students can develop individual paths in areas such as urban geography, urban history, urban culture, urban policy, and urban development. New York, a dynamic, diverse city that faces a range of challenges, serves as an educational laboratory and resource. Urban Studies is part of a suite of interdisciplinary undergraduate programs at The New School that examine the 21st century’s greatest challenges — globalization, urbanism, social justice, and sustainability.

Explore the top ten reasons to pursue Urban Studies at The New School

Major in Urban Studies

The major in Urban Studies, which leads to a Bachelor of Arts in Urban Studies, provides you with an understanding of the peoples and structures that make up cities both in the United States and internationally. Courses explore

  • the city as contested social, political, and imaginary ground, examining the interplay of urbanization, migration, and racial/ethnic identity
  • the impact of labor markets on diverse populations
  • how the city shapes and is shaped by cultural life and the natural environment
  • the interaction of municipal agencies and nonprofit organizations in areas such as housing and homelessness, health, and social welfare
  • how people in the city work with and against one another
  • how neighborhoods are created, destroyed, and revitalized
  • the role of the city in the national and global economy
  • urban politics as a reflection of and protagonist in these questions

Learn more about majoring in Urban Studies:

Lang Students
BPATS Students

Minor in Urban Studies

The Urban Studies minor provides a foundational, interdisciplinary understanding of urbanism and the social, spatial, material, ecological, political, and institutional conditions that shape cities and metropolitan regions. With experiential learning as a key component, the minor provides a strong foundation for students’ engagement with the city, whether as citizens, scholars, artists, designers, architects, bloggers, activists, journalists, educators, curators, or other actors with a stake in the urban.

Learn more about minoring in Urban Studies.






















Registration Checklist

*Note: this registration checklist only provides recommended tips. Please consult with and defer to your academic advisor prior to registration.

Spring 2020 Senior Thesis Projects

  • “Kinda Sorta Public Spaces” – Jervey Inglesby
  • “Coming Out & Popping Up: How queer pop-up events produce communal queer spaces” – Rachel Elson
  • “The 14th Street Landmark Postcard Project” – Juana Urrea Arango
  • “The Modern Food Desert: What We Know, What We Think We Know, and What to Do About All of It” – Samantha Curry
  • “Newtown Creek – Out of Sight, Out of Mind: The Challenges of Industrial Resilience and the Prioritizing of Residential Real Estate” – Amelia Alman
  • “Equitable Solutions to Displacement: A Case Study of Transit Expansion in Seattle” – Natalie Moselle
  • “‘We Will Be Back’: How Disaster Capitalism and Extractive Industry Fueled an Urban Renaissance in Oklahoma City” – Stockton Cobb

Featured Course Projects

Spring 2019 Senior Thesis Projects

  • “Inwood Hill Park and the Future of Green in the City” – Reem Abi Sabra
  • “Reimagining Resiliency” – Daniel Chu
  • “Bodega Talk: Exploring Community and Identity in NYC Corner Stores” – Liam Donaldson
  • “Architecture of Necessity in Havana, Cuba” – Yudelka Gomez Espinal
  • “Housing not as Commodity, but Housing as Home”: The Case of Penn South” – Josephine Hill-James
  • “The Rust Belt is Not Here, Yet” – Isabella Olivo
  • “Practices make solutions: A look into social practices in Bushwick that serves our needs” – Christine Mercedes Rodriguez

Fall 2018 Senior Thesis Projects

Spring 2018 Senior Thesis Projects

  • “ An exploration of sense of place in the age of algorithms” – Samiha Ahmed
  • “Building Just Communities” – Sade Swift
  • “How Transit Oriented Development & Placemaking Can Redefine San Antonio’s Urban Core” – Michael Klunder
  • “Gentrification or Nah: And what that means to teens” – Desiree Rodriguez-St Plice
  • “That Didn’t Work Out Well for Them: The American Dream and the Suburban Horror Film” – Julia Foote
  • “Biomimicry to Inform Urban Design” – Courtney Sprigg


Alexandra Délano Alonso (Global Studies)

Jürgen von Mahs (Urban Studies)

Elaine Savory (Environmental Studies)

GLUE Advisor:
Christina McElderry
64 West 11th St., Room 106
Phone: 646.909.2260

GLUE Program Manager:
Shaked Landor
66 West 12th St., 9th Floor
Phone: 646.909.2784

Global Studies Program Coordinator
Clara Beccaro
66 West 12th St., 9th Floor
Phone: 646.909.2404

Global Studies Student Assistant:
66 West 12th St., 9th Floor
Phone: 646.909.2404

Hours & Info
66 West 12th Street
New York, NY 10012

212-229-5119 x 2784
Monday – Friday: 10 AM – 6 PM


The New School’s interdisciplinary undergraduate programs in Global, Urban and Environmental Studies (GLUE) form an academic laboratory for students to delve into the manifold ways in which global forces are redefining our cities and our ecologies. Within a project-centered curriculum students develop expertise through one of our undergraduate majors and a suite of graduate programs. Students learn to synthesize and creatively employ concepts and skills from social sciences, design, and humanities, and to use this knowledge to impact their world.

Take The Next Step

Submit your application


To apply to any of our Bachelor's programs (Except the Bachelor's Program for Adult Transfer Students) complete and submit the Common App online.

Graduates and Adult Learners

To apply to any of our Master's, Doctural, Professional Studies Diploma, Graduates Certificate, or Associate's programs, or to apply to the Bachelor's Program for Adult and Transfer Students, complete and submit the New School Online Application.