Senior Spotlights

We have some stellar students in our programs. Here we introduce a few of our graduating superstars.

Hamna Tariq ’20 in Bilbao, Basque County, Spain

Hamna Tariq is a senior from Pakistan. She is double majoring in Urban Studies and International Studies. She joined the 2017 cohort of the River Cities program in Thailand and Cambodia during the summer after her freshman year. She was then granted a Luce Foundation grant to research the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Her research in Pakistan took her across the country and focused on the implications of CPEC. Tariq’s research on China-Pakistan relations- in collaboration with Dean Xiangming Chen- was published in the European Financial Review. She studied abroad in Barcelona in fall 2018. This summer, she was a research intern at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. Tariq will be writing her senior thesis on the effects of Chinese aid vs. Western aid on Pakistan’s socio-political structure.


A photo of Parkville by Joe Samuelman

Tony Cherolis, Transport Hartford Coordinator for the Center for Latino Progress, presented Vision Zero to Professor Gamble’s Geographies of Transport class last semester. The goal of Vision Zero is to eliminate traffic fatalities for all road users, and this strategy is being implemented in Hartford with pedestrian safety improvement crosswalk signs. Tony and the Vision Zero project needed the help of our class in proving that centerline crosswalk signs can work and will reduce speeds of cars while improving yielding behavior. We were asked to collect data of driver and pedestrian behavior with and without signs. At the end of the semester, our class presented Tony with observation data we had collected from various Hartford intersections. It was a fulfilling experience to be a part of a change that this city desperately needs and Vision Zero will continue to gain support and help lower traffic fatalities in the years to come.

-Joe Samuelman ’20


Zoe Li ’20 with a friend she met while studying away at Fudan University

As a senior majoring in International Studies and Political Science, I have been fortunate to have received many opportunities through CUGS that have allowed me to further my interests in US-China relations and Chinese society. After participating in the Silk Road Cities program in 2018, where I learned about the Belt and Road Initiative first-hand by traveling to China’s great cities, I was able to form lasting connections with the faculty and staff affiliated with the program. During fall 2018, I worked as an assistant at CUGS and became involved with the Global Vantage Point Lecture Series and even assisted with the publication of the Urban Planet. Last semester, I participated in the Trinity in Shanghai program based at Fudan University’s School of Social Development and Public Policy and interned at the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai on the Information Technology team. It was a life changing experience, as I was able to meet people from all walks of life and was immersed in Chinese language and culture. The everlasting skills and unforgettable experiences I have gained through being involved with CUGS has been beneficial to my current and future academic success and I could never be thankful enough.

Zoe Li ’20

Charlotte Robbins ’20 with a cacao pod in Ecuador

My involvement with CUGS started when I was in the Cities Program my first year. My courses helped me realize how interested I was in urban studies, and that summer I went on the River Cities program. This experience solidified my interest in the relationships between urban environments and the natural world. When I returned to Trinity for my sophomore year, I decided to double major in urban studies as well as environmental science as a way to continue studying the ways in which cities and humans interact with natural resources. I was also able to be a first year seminar mentor for the Cities Program, which allowed me to ruminate on the connections between health and the built and natural environments, while also building strong relationships with my CUGS professors. Now, I’m writing my urban studies thesis on my summer research in Ecuador where I worked on Professor Trostle’s NIH funded project studying community perceptions of dengue fever and ideas about what defines urban and rural areas. The support of the CUGS professors and programs have played a fundamental role in exposing me to new topics and lead me to my interest in urban public health.

-Charlotte Robbins ’20