Academic Area of Focus:

Social and Urban Issues

Worcester City Councilors Thu Nguyen and Etel Haxhiaj
Two Clark alums made Worcester history when they were sworn in as city councilors: Thu Nguyen ’14, right, is the first nonbinary and Southeast Asian American elected to the Council, and Etel Haxjiah ’04, M.A. ’08, is the first Albanian American and Muslim elected in the city.

We will expand research and teaching around the complex social issues facing urban communities, drawing upon Clark’s existing strengths and longstanding connections with the Worcester community.

As an urban-based research university with a liberal arts core, Clark is well positioned to deepen understanding and find solutions to enduring social and urban issues such as poverty, health disparities, and crime, to name only a few.

“Clark’s motto is ‘challenge convention, change our world.’ You can’t change the world unless you’re engaged with it.”

Eric DeMeulenaere
Professor of Education

We seek to become a destination institution for social-justice-oriented and community-engaged research and teaching around a range of social issues that take full advantage of:

  • Clark’s existing strengths in critical social issues, including the studies of race, gender, sexuality, class, and immigrant/national social identities — and how these all intersect.
  • Our urban geographic context in the mid-sized city of Worcester.
  • Amplified opportunities for technologically enhanced, innovative, dynamic, transformational, and mutually beneficial experiential teaching and learning with community partners.