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Pepperdine | Graduate School of Education and Psychology

Urban Fellows Program

The Urban Initiative is integrating a research component to evaluate the success of its efforts, refine its programs, and develop new methodologies for training students as the initiative matures. This research will take shape through the Urban Fellows program, which includes several key strategies:

  • Expose participants to the realities of urban environments in order to understand the damaging impacts of poverty
  • Encourage participants to examine the preconceptions – both positive and negative – that might influence how graduate students approach their work with urban residents
  • Broaden participant understanding of the complex interplay of economic, educational, familial, and cultural issues, and the impact of those issues on their capacity to provide quality service

Fellows learn about common education and mental health issues that appear in urban settings, successful intervention methods, family dynamics, working with public and private agencies, and community building.

Fellows in GSEP's education programs work in diverse settings, including Los Angeles Unified School District charter schools and high schools, middle schools, and elementary schools in Southeast Los Angeles.

Fellows in GSEP's psychology programs work with Job Corps, a federally-mandated program administered in Los Angeles by the Young Women's Christian Association (YWCA); Hope Gardens, a transitional facility for women and children in Sylmar, California and an extension of the Union Rescue Mission, a nonprofit organization dedicated to serving the poor and homeless of Los Angeles; and the Orange County Rescue Mission in Tustin, California.