Go about your city and investigate for yourself the situation of the displaced and those who assist them. Based on what you find, what are your recommendations for bettering the situations of those displaced persons that you believe could be helped? Write about your discoveries in the form of a persuasive article for an influential community newspaper.
Refugees, the poor, and the homeless, seeking shelter and security in more prosperous urban centers, are part of the constant ebb and flow of displaced populations. In recent decades, the issues cities and their inhabitants face in efforts to care for the displaced seem to have worsened. Worldwide, cities and their institutions, public and private, have responded to the needs of the displaced with varying degrees of success and attention.
As future architects we want to know if those with our professional skills as designers and planners could be of use to local governments, institutions and private groups in meeting the needs posed by these disenfranchised populations. To find out, we are obliged 1) to understand the issues first hand and 2) to understand that solutions to these problems must be interdisciplinary.
The Question will require that you do field work in your community. An interdisciplinary approach to researching and writing the Essay is also encouraged. For this purpose, consider teaming up with another undergraduate majoring in architectural design, urban studies or one of the social sciences.