Rice University

Rice University Center for Civic Leadership

Upcoming HART Projects

Projects for the Spring of 2018 will be posted in November 2017...

Connecting Herman Park and the Texas Medical Center (Spring 2018)

Improving Educational Collaboartion at Workshop Houston (Spring 2018)

Interpreting the Relaionship Between Drainage and Flooding (Spring 2018)

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Connecting Hermann Park and the Texas Medical Center (Spring 2018)

Rice’s Center for Civic Leadership (CCL) is collaborating with the Herman Park Conservancy (HPC), to make informed, evidence-based decisions regarding planned renovations to the park. HPC, through a public-private partnership with the Houston Parks and Recreation Department, raises funds, manages projects, and is responsible for the stewardship and improvement of Hermann Park. The current master plan includes developing the 15-acre section of the park known as the Hermann Park Family Commons into a welcoming and civic landscape, update the playground area, and improve access for the adjacent Texas Medical Center (TMC). With the support of TMC leadership, this research project will identify opportunities to design and publicize the space as a convenient, welcoming and enjoyable space for medical center employees and visitors. This experiential learning opportunity will enable students to apply the knowledge and skills gained from Rice courses to complete work that will benefit the city. 

During Spring of 2018, this HART (Houston Action Research Team) will:

  • Research best practices and emerging trends regarding employer-park collaborations, with a focus on collaborations that seek to contribute to positive health outcomes.
  • Interview TMC representatives to solicit ideas about how best to encourage increased and intentional use of Hermann Park by TMC employees and visitors.
  • Design and field a survey of TMC staff in order to determine levels and types of interest in park visitation with special attention paid to park accessibility and preferred features.
  • Survey attendees about design preferences and other opinions regarding future park use and food options during a food and park design event hosted by HPC.

This engaged research opportunity is available to Rice undergraduate students for Spring of 2018. An interdisciplinary team of four students, each of whom will bring different, but equally important, skills, knowledge, and experiences, will undertake this project. Team members will each work approximately 10 hours per week on this project between January 8th and May 2nd under the guidance of CCL staff and Dr. Bob Stein (Professor, Political Science) and will receive $10/hour for their project work. Work time will be flexible, although team members must attend weekly meetings and must coordinate time to work with other team members on the project as needed. Undergraduate students from all fields of study with interests and/or skills in at least some of the following areas are encouraged to apply:

Parks, urban planning, demography, survey design, interviewing, healthcare, non-profits, City of Houston, data analysis, Excel, R, STATA, data visualization, ArcGIS, professional writing, public presentation, teamwork

APPLICATIONS ARE DUE December 4, 2017

To inquire or apply contact Dr. Alan Steinberg, steinberg@rice.edu

For more about Rice’s HART Program, visit: http://ccl.rice.edu

Application instructions are available HERE

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Improving Education Collaboration at Workshop Houston (Spring 2018)

Rice’s Center for Civic Leadership (CCL) is collaborating with Workshop Houston to identify ways to improve their ability to offer services for local youth by working more closely with community educators and leaders. Workshop Houston’s mantra for this initiative is, “How can we help you help our children?” This initiative is part of a larger effort to revamp the Scholar Shop (a project-based STEAM lab) and efforts to market the Scholar Shop as a fun, educational, hands-on learning experience to middle and high school students in the Third Ward. Workshop Houston, a youth development organization and neighborhood resource that provides youth with creative, technical and educational resources through experiential learning opportunities in Southeast Houston, hopes to increase engagement of local youth beyond their current traditional after school programming model. This experiential learning opportunity will enable students to apply the knowledge and skills gained from Rice courses to complete work that will benefit the residents of the City of Houston. 

During Spring of 2018, this HART (Houston Action Research Team) will:

  • Identify best practices regarding co-educational support services and partnerships between schools and non-profit organizations.
  • Interview local community leaders and educators to determine potential means for Workshop Houston to identify and integrate with school based and community education initiatives, with special focus to activities that can take place during school hours.
  • Determine which, if any, improvements to the Scholar Shop might increase its ability to align with existing education initiatives of local schools and the community.
  • Develop a plan to market the Scholar Shop to local educational institutions, community organizations, and neighborhood youth at large.

This engaged research opportunity is available to Rice undergraduate students for Spring of 2018. An interdisciplinary team of four students, each of whom will bring different, but equally important, skills, knowledge, and experiences, will undertake this project. Team members will each work approximately 10 hours per week on this project between January 8th and May 2nd under the guidance of CCL staff and will receive $10/hour for their project work. Work time will be flexible, although team members must attend weekly meetings and must coordinate time to work with other team members on the project as needed. Undergraduate students from all fields of study with interests and/or skills in at least some of the following areas are encouraged to apply:

 Education, youth programing, community engagement, interviewing, school supports, marketing, non-profits, City of Houston, data analysis, Excel, R, STATA, data visualization, professional writing, public presentation, teamwork

APPLICATIONS ARE DUE December 4, 2017

To inquire or apply contact Dr. Alan Steinberg, steinberg@rice.edu

For more about Rice’s HART Program, visit: http://ccl.rice.edu

Application instructions are available HERE

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Interpreting the Relaionship Between Drainage and Flooding (Spring 2018)

Rice’s Center for Civic Leadership (CCL) is working with the City of Houston’s Chief Resilience Officer to identify relationships between ground permeability, drainage, and flooding in the Houston area. As part of a larger endevor by the Research and Education for Able Communities under Hazards (REACH) group and the Severe Storm Prediction, Education and Evacuation from Disasters (SSPEED) Center at Rice University, this project will focus on creating GIS based maps that help to identify areas of greater risk of flooding. Findings from this project will inform city policy on dealing with future flooding. This experiential learning opportunity will enable students to apply the knowledge and skills gained from Rice courses to complete work that will benefit the city. 

During Spring of 2018, this HART (Houston Action Research Team) will:

  • Research flooding data sources including City of Houston 311 information, Houston GIMS databases, Harris County Flood Control LIDAR data, and others
  • Collect and analysize data from public websites and other databases using spatial and temporal statistical modeling
  • Create a GIS map to test theories regarding relationships between ground permeability, drainage, rainfall and reports of flooding
  • Interview stakeholders who have been involved with flooding in the Houston area
  • Complete a written report including digital maps and oral presentation of findings for the City of Houston’s Chief Resilience Officer

 This engaged research opportunity is available to Rice undergraduate students for Spring of 2018. This project will be undertaken by an interdisciplinary team of four students, each of whom will bring different, but equally important, skills, knowledge, and experiences. Team members will each work approximately 10 hours per week on this project between January 8th and May 2nd under the guidance of CCL staff, Dr. Leonardo Duenas-Osorio (Associate Professor, Civil & Environmental Engineering) and Dr. Bob Stein (Professor, Political Science) and will receive $10/hour for their project work. Work time will be flexible, although team members must attend weekly meetings and must coordinate time to work with other team members on the project as needed. Undergraduate students from all fields of study with interests and/or skills in at least some of the following areas are encouraged to apply:

Urban planning, GIS, mapping, civil and environmental engineering, hydrology, drainage, data analysis, R, Excel, emergency management, decision making, Stata, Python, data visualization, interviewing, professional writing, public presentations, teamwork, civic leadership

APPLICATIONS ARE DUE December 7, 2017

To inquire or apply contact Dr. Alan Steinberg, steinberg@rice.edu

For more about Rice’s HART Program, visit: http://ccl.rice.edu

Application instructions are available HERE

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