Obama Foundation Fellowships


The Obama Foundation believes that when we lift up and support new leaders, everyone benefits. But it’s not just a belief; it’s what we seek to do every day.

So, we’re thrilled to announce that applications for the next class of Obama Foundation Fellows are now open.


We’re looking for 20 rising stars from around the world who are working alongside their communities to solve important public problems in creative and powerful ways. The two-year, non-residential program offers hands-on training, leadership development, and a powerful network to equip Fellows to scale the impact of their work.

We’re searching for candidates who are civic innovators, discipline-diverse, at a tipping point in their work, not yet connected to the networks they need to advance their work, and motivated by the powerful desire to help others. You can learn more about what we look for when selecting Fellows here.

If you share these qualities, please apply to join the next class of Obama Fellows by September 18, 2018. Or, if you know someone who should apply, please let them know that the call for applications is now open.



2019 California Transportation Planning Conference Call for Student Posters


Call for Poster Session
February 25, 2019 – San Diego, CA

Poster sessions are a popular feature at conferences and annual meetings, and they will be on display at the Welcome Reception at the 2019 California Transportation Planning Conference (CTPC). Creators of accepted posters should plan to be available during the poster session presentation period on Monday, February 25, 2019 from 6:00-7:30 p.m. to answer questions and discuss their work. This is a great opportunity for creators to share their research and network with industry leaders and practitioners. Please join us and share your research with the multiple participants at the 2019 CTPC.

Submit Your Poster Session Proposal by Friday, October 19, 2018 to alison.nealon@dot.ca.gov

Tips and Lessons for Creating Successful Posters

Q:  What is a Poster Session?

A:  A poster session is a visual forum for presenters to highlight their work and to share their successful ideas with colleagues by presenting a research study, a practical problem-solving effort or an innovative program. These sessions are suitable for a presentation of topics that may not be meaty enough for an entire paper or formal presentation, and allow for works in progress. Posters combine text and graphics to present information in a clear, visual manner, and allow conference participants to quickly and easily become acquainted with the topic on their own.

Q:  What Topics are Appropriate?

A:  A poster can cover any topic related to transportation planning information; we are particularly interested in topic being covered at the conference (please see agenda for planned sessions). They are not vendor sponsored advertisements, although independent product discussions and analysis are welcome. As with the conference educational programming, the posters should support the discussions around the core topics being address at the conference. These include:

  • Transportation Funding
  • Performance Measures
  • Transportation Demand Management
  • Rural Planning
  • Equity and Health
  • Localized Mobility
  • Integrated Planning/Ticketing
  • Planning and Environmental Linkages
  • Housing and Transportation
  • Changing Technologies
  • Scenario Planning/Planning for the Future
  • Climate Change
  • Transit and Rail Connectivity
  • Freight Planning

Q:  What Should Poster Session Proposals Include?

A:  Poster proposals will need to be submitted via email to alison.nealon@dot.ca.gov by Friday, October 19, 2018. The proposal must include a title, name(s) of the creator(s), and an abstract of 50-200 words describing the information to be presented in the poster. Proposers will be notified by November 9th.

Q:  If My Poster is Accepted, what do I Have to Do?

A:  Specific size and material requirements for the posters will be sent with the poster acceptances. Create an engaging visual display that explains your topic to be affixed to a free-standing board. Plan to set up your poster between 5:00 p.m. and 5:45 p.m. on Monday, February 25, 2019. Poster creators and/or representative will need to be present during the poster session presentation period on, from 6:00-7:30 p.m. to answer questions and discuss your poster. You must remove your display once the reception closes on Monday at 7:30 p.m.

If you have any questions, please contact alison.nealon@dot.ca.gov

You can find the full set of Poster Session Guidelines in the attached document: Poster Session Guidelines

Call for Student Volunteers

The San Diego Host Committee is recruiting students volunteers for the Cal APA Conference in San Diego from October 7-10. Volunteer assistance is needed with registration, speaker/session monitoring, exhibit hall, tour send-offs, the opening party on the Midway, and other special events such as the CPF auction, consultant reception, and awards program. Students will receive four hours of complimentary conference registration for every four hours of volunteer work, and lots of opportunities to network with planning professionals.

A list of available volunteer opportunities will be sent out in the next two weeks, and volunteer assignments will be made in early to mid – September. If you have any questions and/or would like to add your name to the list of interested volunteers, please email Sharon Singleton: sharon@ktua.com.

USP APA Liaison

Each year the USP Program appoints a representative to serve as the student Liaison to the San Diego Chapter of the American Planning Association.

The APA Liaison serves as the SDAPA representative and voting board member and attends board meetings every second Monday of the month at 4:30pm. The APA Liaison also promotes APA events and informs students of various opportunities in the San Diego area.

If you are interested in this position, please apply at the following link by Friday, July 13 at 12pm (the deadline has been extended).


USP Club Survey

In the past, USP has had a USP club for students interested in planning (regardless of major). Its aim was to connect students with one another,  provide opportunities for social networking and learning about planning and design-related careers, as well as to have some fun. In the last few years interest in the club diminished but we have received feedback that students might be interested in the club once again. We have created a survey to gather feedback about whether or not to restart the club.

If you could fill out our brief interest survey, we would greatly appreciate it: