Director’s Welcome

Joel Rast 2014

Joel Rast, USP Director

Welcome to the Urban Studies Programs of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee! Founded in the 1960s as the Department of Urban Affairs, the Urban Studies Programs combine passion for social justice with hard-edged social science research. In our programs, undergraduates and graduate students can learn about cities and suburbs from faculty with urban expertise from multiple UWM departments. We offer an extensive array of extracurricular, urban-themed activities, including an annual State of the City Summit every fall and graduate-student run conference every spring.

We welcome graduate applications from students of all ages and a wide variety of intellectual backgrounds. Previous experience in Urban Studies is not necessary. The small size of our student body means that students can receive lots of attention from Program staff. If you are interested in learning more, please feel free to contact me or USP Associate Director, Jamie Harris at

Dr. Joel Rast, USP Director
Professor of Political Science