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Awais Azhar

Graduate Research Assistant

Master of Science in Community and Regional Planning

Awais’s research focuses on strategies and policies that help achieve affordability goals at the local government level, with an emphasis on how the housing market responds to shifts in policy and production. He is a Potter Rose Graduate Fellowship awardee and Graduate Assistant to the CRP Graduate Adviser. He has a Master of Science in Community and Regional Planning and a Master of Public Affairs from the University of Texas at Austin. Previously, Awais worked as Program Manager for the Austin Community Investment Collaborative at HousingWorks Austin, focusing on affordable housing policy and research. Currently, he serves on the HousingWorks Austin Policy Committee, Community Advancement Network Dashboard Steering Committee, City of Austin LGBTQ Quality of Life Advisory Commission and is a 2017 Central Health Community Health Champion.

Adam Ogusky

Teaching Assistant

Master of Science in Community and Regional Planning

Adam Ogusky’s research interests include the intersection of the philosophy of ethics and planning processes, as well as art and cultural planning. He received a B.A. in Geography from Dartmouth College in 2004 and an M.S. in Planning from UT Austin in 2010. After graduation, he moved to New Mexico and worked in arts education in Albuquerque, followed by stints as a planner for the local planning department and as a potter in Taos.

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Andrea Wirsching

Long-session Sustainability Studies Teaching Assistant with MA

Ph.D. in Community and Regional Planning

Andrea "Christina" Wirsching, is a PhD candidate in the Community and Regional Planning Program at The University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin), and a fellow in the National Science Foundation Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (NSF IGERT) program at UT Austin in Sustainable Energy and Smart Grids.  She is also in the Graduate Portfolio Program in Mexican American and Latina/o Studies at UT Austin. Originally from Laredo, Texas, Christina’s research examines the multilayered contexts in and of planning to critically inform community planning and scholarship. She holds a Master of Science in Community and Regional Planning degree as well as a BA in Geography from UT Austin, where she established a strong foundation in environmental resource management and secondary science education.
 
Her master’s research focused on historiographies in planning.  Her thesis examined the controversy within the historical context of the Holly Street Power Plant and surrounding Mexican American neighborhood, connecting to her deep familial ties in this East Austin, Texas neighborhood.  Christina’s passion for giving back to her community continues to be evident in her current interdisciplinary academic pursuits.  Christina’s dissertation research incorporates traditional impact assessments and spatial analyses of communities effected by the oil and gas industry with histories of governance and land development, with the goal of painting a more nuanced picture of what this looks like on the ground and how we got there.  She is conducting her study along the Texas-Mexico border in Webb County, Texas, where Laredo is the county seat.  
 
Christina served as a member of the UT School of Architecture Diversity Task Force, part of the leadership teams of student organizations focused on diversity, and, in her professional pre-graduate school life, worked in STEM academic student affairs and graduate recruitment for historically underrepresented student populations at UT Austin. She is qualified to teach a variety of courses related to planning and research methods, ranging from history and theory, research design and methods, critical cartography and practical applications of GIS, to courses similar to one she designed and taught, Latino Urban Studies, which integrates Mexican American and Latino Studies and planning.  Her course was the first of its kind at UT Austin designed and taught by a planning scholar.   

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Stephen Zigmund

Teaching Assistant

Master of Science in Community and Regional Planning

Stephen is a PhD student in Community & Regional Planning at the University of Texas at Austin. Currently, his research explores the effects of urban and regional neoliberalization on public transportation provision, specifically, how public transportation deployed as an urban revitalization strategy effects its use by the transit dependent. His research seeks to contribute to critical theoretical discussions around the "politics of infrastructure" and its impacts on urban governance strategies. Stephen previously worked as Comprehensive Planner for the City of Columbia, South Carolina. He holds a M.S. in Community & Regional Planning from UT-Austin and a B.A. in Political Science from Kent State University.

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Deidre Zoll

Teaching Assistant

Ph.D. in Community and Regional Planning

I’m a third-year PhD student in Community and Regional Planning at the University of Texas at Austin. My research examines the relationship between race, class and climate adaptation projects in U.S. cities.
 
Before landing in Texas, I studied Global Environmental Policy and International Development (M.A., 2008) at American University, and Environmental Policy and Planning (B.A., 2003) at Alaska Pacific University. I’ve taken big breaks between educational adventures to ground my classroom experiences in our beautifully messy world.  Work stints have included guiding sea kayakers in the wilds of Alaska, wearing a suit in DC while trying to conserve forests with the World Wildlife Fund, and managing a research institute amongst the rolling green mountains of Vermont.
 
In Austin, I’m desperately trying to be an urban biker while shunning spandex, fancy bikes, and clipless pedals. It is both a lovely disaster and a sweaty work in progress. Much like research and life. 
 

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Clare Zutz

Ph.D. in Community and Regional Planning

Clare’s research is focused on local food policy and planning as a lens to create more equitable and sustainable lived experiences among citizens in urban communities. She currently lectures on civic engagement and leadership at UT Austin’s LBJ School of Public Affairs, where she received her master’s in public affairs. Most recently, she worked as a researcher and program coordinator at the RGK Center for Philanthropy and Community Service. In her spare time, she enjoys playing with her chickens and Border Collies.

Andrea Roberts for website.jpg

Andrea Roberts photo
Andrea Roberts is investigating the heritage of early African American settlements. She is developing a planning practice that bridges present day asset building and descendants’ ongoing efforts to sustain a connection to ancestral communities.