Student Leader Chronicles: Networking leads to new SNU group

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Shane Pace sought out leadership opportunities at the University of Texas at Arlington (UT-A), and he found one by starting a Students for the New Urbanism (SNU) group. We, at the Congress for the New Urbanism, congratulate Shane and the UT-A SNU group on their recent formal recognition! What follows is a retrospect on how our newest student group came to be through networking.

Shane says, “Starting the group was fairly simple.” While pursuing leadership opportunities, he was connected to North Texas CNU Chapter board member Kara Night by UT-A’s Student Planning Association. Night was interested in forming a SNU student chapter in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. Meanwhile, Pace was already a New Urbanism proponent because as he says, “New Urbanism helps neighbors know neighbors and thus create bonds that strength communities.” A partnership made sense, so the two joined forces to build a SNU group. After securing helpful faculty advisor Dr. Ivonne Audirac, adapting the SNU recommended constitution to fit his university’s needs, and the election of seven enthusiastic people to board positions the group was formed.

Looking to the future, Shane sees the group fulfilling its mission as an advocate for New Urbanism’s many benefits and a challenger to its myths. Likewise, he looks forward to the plethora of networking opportunities with working professions the group’s forum will now offer to members. One challenge he would like to overcome is that it has been hard to communicate with students across the University’s many schools. However, on the recommendation of NTXCNU board member Dr.Taner Ozdil, the group hopes to overcome this challenge by installing a representative for the School of Architecture in the near future.

Kevin “Shane” Pace is a second year graduate student working toward University of Texas – Arlington’s Master of City and Regional Planning with a concentration in Urban and Suburban Design and Redevelopment. He interns in the Sustainable Development Department at the North Central Texas Council of Governments.


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