Thoughts on Parks

This summer I have had the amazing opportunity to volunteer in Grand Teton National Park. One of the most rewarding parts of working in a national park is seeing first time visitors experience and appreciate the beauty of the park. Visitors will run up to us to show us pictures of wildlife they saw on…

Undergraduate Research Day 2021

On April 9th, I was able to participate in Undergraduate Research Day (URD) here at the University of Oklahoma. While URD had to be virtual this year, it was still incredibly exciting and rewarding to present on my own research for the first time. It was also a great space to get experience presenting on…

An Overview of MAPS

MAPS (Metropolitan Area Projects) is a very unique capital improvement project system that Oklahoma City has been using since 1993. The first MAPS was approved by voters in 1993, putting a one-cent sales tax in place. When the tax expired in 1999, it had collected over $309 million (as well as $54 million accrued in…

Construction of Highways and Destruction of Neighborhoods

The urban renewal movement of the 1950s and 1960s aimed to improve cities by removing slums and urban blight. This often meant the destruction or gentrification of minority neighborhoods. This movement intersected with the beginning of the American Interstate system. As city planners decided where to place these new highways that connected their city to…

The Importance of Parks … Thinking Beyond the Literature

As I spend my weeks delving into environmental justice and parks research, I can sometimes get buried under piles of academic papers, a little lost in the direction of my research. I have to remind myself of what drew me to my research topic in the first place. I have had the opportunity to explore…