Inside USD

Turkish Living: USD Student is Kroc-Pulitzer Reporting Fellow

Thursday, June 12, 2014

College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) architecture student and incoming senior, Paul Short, is about to embark on a trip of a lifetime. Literally. Short leaves for Turkey with the University of San Diego Summer Study Abroad Program, as a Kroc-Pulitzer Reporting Fellow at the end of June. The trip will be Short’s first time abroad.

The Pulitzer Center selects undergraduate students to study and report on crises abroad. This year, the Pulitzer Center selected only 21 students nationwide. The recipients are expected to report on a range of complex issues from around the world and will be mentored by Pulitzer Center-supported journalists and staff throughout their projects. The reporting fellowships are awarded to students who attend colleges and universities that are part of the Pulitzer Center’s Campus Consortium educational initiative. USD is part of the consortium with a partnership with the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies.

“The Kroc School is delighted to offer USD students an opportunity to learn from Pulitzer Center journalists at campus events and in the field through an international reporting fellowship,” said interim Kroc School Dean Lee Ann Otto. “On behalf of the Kroc School faculty and staff, we congratulate Paul on his fellowship award.”

CAS Dean Noelle Norton is proud to have a CAS student representing the college and USD abroad this summer. “Paul Short’s recognition as Pulitzer Fellow is a wonderful, well-deserved honor. The college is proud to call him one of our own! With the help of this program, he will be able to put his studies on urban planning to practice working with displaced people in Istanbul.”

Also a McNair Scholar, Short has spent weeks researching what will be his project once he arrives in Istanbul. He will be studying the affect architecture has on the people, whereas, so far in his studies, Short explains, he has focused solely on design-based architecture. The difference, he describes, is that the focus is less on the structure itself, but rather how that structure impacts the people who live and work in its vicinity. “This is completely different for me. Instead of looking simply at the architecture, I’ll be looking at how the architecture affects the people. I’ll be able to see both sides of the argument,” he said.

As Short passionately explains, Istanbul is one of the fastest growing cities in the world, but with that growth has come gentrification, with low income and ethnic minorities being forced out of the city center and into the suburbs of Istanbul, where earning a living is difficult at best. As renewal programs moved into the area, conditions became worse until Istanbul’s historical city center was dilapidated. “One of the issues,” Short clarifies, “is that urban renewal is used as a way of fixing the historic city centers by removing current residents based on reasons such as unhealthy social environment, the existence of informal economies and the dilapidated state of the neighborhoods.”

Short will be in Turkey for four weeks this summer, with frequent reports back to the United States on what he’s learning. Be sure to check for Short’s reflections while he’s in Istanbul.

– Melissa Wagoner Olesen

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