Chancellor's Urban Engaged Scholars

Dr. Varda Recognized as One of Seven Chancellor’s Urban Engaged Scholars


Denver, CO (January 17, 2020) – Nearly one year ago, Chancellor Dorothy Horrell announced the first-ever TIAA Chancellor’s Urban Engaged Scholars. The seven faculty members—one from each school or college—are using research to address current urban issues while supporting student involvement and developing community partnerships. 

On Wednesday, Jan. 15, university and community leaders from throughout the region convened at CityCenter to formally honor these faculty members as leading exemplars of how CU Denver serves as an asset to the city. Denver Mayor Michael Hancock commemorated the inaugural cohort of scholars by placing a gold stole over the following faculty members for their outstanding work.

The 2019-2020 scholars include:

  • Andrew Guerrero, Instructor of Music & Entertainment Industry Studies in the College of Arts & Media, is creating amplified opportunities for youth through music. 
  • Jeremy Németh, PhD, Associate Professor of Urban and Regional Planning in the College of Architecture and Planning, is predicting gentrification to prevent it. 
  • Kevin Rens, PhD, Professor of Civil Engineering in the College of Engineering, Design and Computing, is ensuring the safety of bridges in the City and County of Denver. 
  • Esther Sullivan, PhD, Assistant Professor of Sociology in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, is increasing awareness of the unseen victims of urban growth. 
  • Antwan Jefferson, PhD, Assistant Professor of Human Development and Family Relations in the School of Education & Human Development, is activating a university network for community scholarships. 
  • Danielle Varda, PhD, Associate Professor of Public Affairs in the School of Public Affairs, is analyzing how social connectedness affects individual health. 
  • Francisco Conejo, PhD, Senior Instructor of Marketing in the Business School, is studying the economic impact of 16th Street Mall panhandlers.

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