Dean's Welcome

Learn more about the dean and her ambitions for the CAPPA department in her Welcome Message.


Welcome to the College of Architecture, Planning and Public Affairs, better known as CAPPA. We are at an exciting moment as we continue to re-imagine the built environment, the design of buildings, their interiors and landscapes, while addressing sustainability, public policy, and equity. As an interdisciplinary college, CAPPA brings together the disciplines of Architecture, Interior Design, Landscape Architecture, Planning, Public Administration, and Public Policy to impact the communities in which we live. We encourage our students to learn from a variety of fields as we tackle complex urban and rural problems with new perspectives shared through partnerships across campus, other universities, industry partners, architecture firms, nonprofits and community partners.

CAPPA is on the rise as a result of faculty that engage with physical and social issues as researchers and practitioners, and a growing undergraduate and graduate student body that represents our regional and global reach. Our commitment to the well-being of our environment through research and design is evident as we launch two new degrees in high demand fields: a B.S. in Sustainable Urban Design, and an M.S. in Sustainable Urban Building Technology.

We are committed to actively engaging our students in using the latest technology and practices, as we prepare future professionals to navigate a much different world. Fostering creativity and research through our new Virtual Reality Lab in collaboration with the Art + Art History Department, and a new Design-Build Studio in Arlington that provides new spaces, equipment and opportunities for local collaboration, are some of the ways that we seek to inspire, motivate, and educate students to pursue excellence in academic scholarship, design practice, creative thinking and critical reflection. I look forward to welcoming you to our dynamic college.


Dr. Martinez-Cosio joined UTA as an assistant professor in the School of Urban and Public Affairs (SUPA) at UTA in 2004. She earned tenure in SUPA, and after 10 years as an academic, joined the UTA Provost’s Office as an Associate Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs, leading a number of campus-wide projects. Dr. Cosio’s research is focused on community development and the engagement of residents from underserved populations in comprehensive community efforts, particularly those funded by philanthropic foundations. Her book, Catalysts for Change: 21st Century Philanthropy and Community Development (2013), co-authored with a UC San Diego colleague, won the Community Development Society Award Current Research award. Her next book is an edited volume in partnership with researchers in Canada, examining place-based change through an equity lens. Her most recent article in City & Community, co-authored with her former PhD student, examines the participatory practices of Spanish-speaking immigrants in community governance and calls on practitioners and public representatives to examine the design of participatory spaces to more fully engage diverse residents.

As a first-generation college graduate, Dr. Cosio is engaged in a number of student success efforts and helped lead a team to win UTA’s first Department of Education Hispanic Serving Institution grant in 2015 that created the IDEAS Center. This $1.6 million, five-year grant funded transfer student support services that have now been institutionalized by the university. Her team’s work in this grant was recognized by the THECB as a Star-Award finalist (2019), and by Excelencia in Education as a finalist (2019). Dr. Cosio received her Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of California, San Diego, as well as a M.Ed. from the University of San Diego.

Read her full research profile.