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The University of Texas at ArlingtonThe University of Texas at Arlington

Student Voices

interior design student

"I chose my degree program because I want to combine everything that I am passionate about and use it to create memorable experiences for everyone. I am proud of the many technical programs that I’ve been exposed to during my time at CAPPA as well as understanding the basics to a good design."

- Maria Ramirez, Interior Design Student


During my time at CAPPA a few of my accomplishments were being hired as an intern at an international design firm, studying at Lund University in Swedenfor a semester, and being granted a graduate teaching assistant position with professor Pia Sarpaneva. Post graduation I will either seek a second graduate degree, or return to the profession full time.

- Braison Boykin, Architecture Graduate Student

phd student

The multi-disciplinary faculty force matches my research interest in environmental equity perfectly, and the encouraging research environment has provided me a strong support for conducting my doctoral study at CAPPA. I will keep working on my research and devote myself into achieving an encouraging, inspiring,and supportive environment for the future research force.

- Qian He, PhD student in Urban Planning and Public Policy

students I chose CAPPA because I had been working in the field of Urban Planning for over 10 years, and I was passionate about delving deeper into the field. CAPPA is truly a driving force in the field of urban planning not just in the metroplex but also on a national level. The field of Urban Planning and Public Policy gives me the ability to change people’s everyday lives for the better.

- Aldo Fritz, PhD student in Urban Planning and Public Policy


My combined love for biology, psychology and design is what inspired me to choose Interior Design as a degree. I believe that Interior Design not only allows, but requires a passion in these subjects. Interior Design must be very personal, directly responding to the biological and psychological processes of those who are dwelling in and connecting with the space.

- Diane Williams, Interior Design student


One of the main reasons to choose CAPPA was its location. CAPPA and UT Arlington are located in a rapidly developing metropolitan region in north Texas where the growth and changes are happening at a much faster pace and equitable inter-disciplinary decisions are needed in planning. Secondly, CAPPA provides the multi-disciplinary lens needed to understand such development more holistically.

- Amruta Sakalker, PhD student int Urban Planning and Public Policy


I have been teaching in CAPPA which has been a very fulfilling and rewarding experience. In addition, I was involved in a research team whose work has recently featured in a top planning journal. Finally, my own line of research on city branding, place making, and social equity has captured attention in the Associations of Collegiate Schools of Planning.

- Ahmad Bonakdar, PhD student in Urban Planning and Public Policy


I have a strong interest in sustainable design and am a LEED professional. I have been a practicing Architect for over 30 years and have run my own successful architectural firm for over 20 years. The CAPPA program is an excellent adjunct to my Architectural education and will give me the opportunity to expand my knowledge in Urban Planning.

- Francisco W. Kessler, PhD student in Urban Planning and Public Policy


I have had a deep interest in architecture at an academic scale and always been struggling to find a mean between academia and professional practice. The M.Arch program at CAPPA enabled me to enhance my professional ability in relation with well known architects in the world as well as my academical knowledge and skills in architecture.

- Ilia Yazdanpanah, graduate student in Master of Architecture


The reason I chose my degree program, I believe strongly that it will prepare me for a career in academia, research or in government where I can be instrumental in the process of creating public value achieved through providing equal opportunities for all, including the poor and vulnerable, women and seniors.

- Salvador Portillo, PhD student in Public Administration and Public Policy