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Vol. 10 No. 2

The Cornell Urban Scholars Program: Cultivating New York City’s Next Generation of Civic Leaders

November 10, 2010


This article describes the origins, evolution, and development
of a comprehensive civic engagement program designed
to encourage Ivy League students to pursue public service
careers with nonprofits and municipal government organizations
serving New York City’s poorest children, families, and neighborhoods.
The article offers a detailed description of the various
programs that constitute the Cornell Urban Scholars Program,
which includes a high school leadership camp, a public-serviceoriented
alternative spring break, an undergraduate summer
internship program, a graduate research fellowship in children,
family, and community development policy making, a nonprofit
career fair, and a new refereed journal. The article also
includes a preliminary analysis of the accomplishments and
limitations of this new civic engagement effort. It concludes
with a review of the major factors that have led to the program’s
initial success and ongoing sustainability.