Design Trust believes in a future where public space is accessible, vibrant, and designed by and for the people who use it. Yet there is a significant gap in representation within the urban design field, where only 16% of urban designers in NYC identify as people of color. That is why we created the Equitable Public Space (EPS) Fellowship in 2016 to bring more voices, skill sets and life experiences into the practice of designing our public realm. Watch the video to learn more about the impact of our Fellowship programs.
This year, we've expanded our Fellows program and our Board of Directors established the Susan Chin Fellowship Fund, in recognition of Susan’s commitment to diversity and equity in shaping our cities and to ensure the longevity of our Fellows program. As we approach our 25th anniversary, Design Trust’s work is more essential than ever, with the issues of equity and community engagement being debated in all aspects of urban life. Fellows build Design Trust’s capacity and help our work to be seen, felt and experienced throughout all five boroughs–from parks and plazas to streets and public buildings.
I came into the Equitable Public Space Fellowship knowing I wanted to work in the public realm in some nebulous way, but not being sure how people actually did it. The Fellowship helped me understand public space issues at a systemic level, and also the individual professional’s role and scope of impact in the field.