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Bachelor of Arts in American Urban Studies

About this Program

Earn your Bachelor of Arts in American Urban Studies in 2 years, 8 months. Discover where this degree can take you!
At MCNY, you will achieve intellectual growth though learning and doing. Our innovative liberal arts program marries classroom theory with real civic engagement offering every student the opportunity to become an agent of change in a complex urban environment.

What is American Urban Studies?
Our program in American Urban Studies focuses learning on urban life in American cities through the examination of many subject areas and the application of group and individual endeavors. New York City is used as a learning laboratory and provides MCNY students first-hand experience in analyzing the challenges faced in urban areas. The result is a confident, well-rounded graduate who knows how to assess real world issues and implement change.

In MCNY's Bachelor of American Urban Studies, you will:

  • Learn from multidimensional, dynamic faculty
  • Gain valuable teamwork skills
  • Overcome obstacles by becoming a problem solver
  • Unite classroom theory with real-world practice through the Constructive Action
  • Open up limitless career possibilities

What can a liberal arts program do for you?
Students pursue the liberal arts because they want to grow their capabilities as an intellectual member of society. The core of a liberal arts curriculum examines subjects as diverse as art, literature, politics, math and science. Our graduates become problem solvers, critical thinkers, effective writers and persuasive public speakers. We provide practice in the liberal arts by combining comprehensive and diverse knowledge with a focus on civic engagement in an urban context. That is what makes the Bachelor of Arts in American Urban Studies a powerful tool in opening doors for your future.

New York City is your classroom.
There is no better place to study the phenomena of urban areas than in New York City. Students take advantage of the tremendous learning opportunities in New York by going out into the city and seeing the institutions, organizations and groups that make New York thrive. Students have observed community board meetings, interacted with stakeholders, conversed with leaders of cultural institutions and have gained understanding of religious institutions. These field experiences will allow you to see first-hand how New York's complex web of people and organizations come together to form the greater urban environment.

The Constructive Action makes the liberal arts practical.
The cornerstone of our unique purpose-centered educational approach is the Constructive Action. More than a thesis, it is an act of service that empowers students to better manage their lives, meet community needs and work within the greater urban environment to improve the world. Students learn to integrate knowledge with work. They learn to plan, carry out and assess their ideas for change. As students progress through the semesters, they develop as people, professionals and as community activists.

Each semester, your coursework provides the foundation for your Constructive Action. The themes or purposes of each semester are:

  1. Computer Applications and Information Literacy
  2. Self-Assessment through Writing and Technology
  3. Interpersonal Communication and Conflict Resolution
  4. Communicating across Cultures
  5. Empowerment through the Arts
  6. Civic Engagement
  7. Assessing Urban Needs
  8. Planning and Managing Urban Needs (continued from seventh semester)

Here are some examples of Constructive Action topics and experiential learning activities:

  • Interpersonal Communication and Conflict Resolution
    • Fostering self-confidence and success with secondary-school girls
    • Maternally-led blended family conflict:
      • Student led family meetings to decrease hostility and improve communication between she and her mother
    • Communication conflicts with male members of different cultures
      • Student interviewed men in her life to understand the core belief, social customs and communication styles among West Indian and American men.
    • Fire drills at a charter school
      • While interning at a charter school, student designed and implemented fire drill plans for the building, involving FDNY, PTA, students and staff
  • Communicating across Cultures
    • Video documenting responses to 9-11
    • Communication with street vendors in Central Park
    • PTA lead-poisoning education in a multi-lingual elementary school
  • Civic Engagement
    • Introduction of Bedford-Stuyvesant resident concerns to community board and council members
    • Print representation of unique neighborhoods in New York City
    • Tenant-led intervention to clean trash from residential projects
  • Assessing Urban Needs & Planning and Managing Urban Needs
    • Decline of black families due to absent father
    • The effects of gentrification and its impact on the insurgence of racial incidents in Central Harlem
    • Traumatic stress disorder as it relates to 9/11: a phenomenological perspective
    • The economic and biosocial aspects of obesity as an urban problem

The American Urban Studies program is a pathway to a career of your choice.
American Urban Studies does not lock you into one career; it opens up a pathway to many career possibilities. Going through the program serves as inspiration for finding your true calling. Graduating from the program serves as a springboard into potential careers and/or further education. Graduates of American Urban Studies can go into:

  • Education – Childhood and Secondary in Social Sciences
  • Law School
  • Public Administration
  • Civil Service on the local or regional level
  • Health and Human Resources
  • NYPD and Specialized Units
  • Political Science
  • Arts Administration
  • Urban Planning
  • Non-profit management

Transform yourself as an individual and transform your community as an innovator.
Graduates of the American Urban Studies program are innovators and you cannot predict the path they will take. They are change agents because they possess the skills to promote integrity, innovation, empowerment and diversity in their careers, their communities and their lives.

See for yourself what MCNY can offer you - click here for a listing of Admissions Events.

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Mailing Address MCNY (431 Canal Street New York, NY 10013 · 529 Courtlandt Avenue Bronx, New York 10451)
Phone Number  (800) 33 THINK | 212 343 1234