City Sessions 2: The University as Community – Next City

City Sessions 2: The University as Community

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

6:00pm - 7:30pm

You’re invited to join us for a series of discussions about the ideas, issues and communities that will shape Philadelphia’s future. This three-part event series is brought to you by Next City in partnership with the media organizations, 900AM-WURD and AL DÍA News, with the support of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. All events are free and open to the public.

The University as Community
November 19, 2014

Pre-reception is from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Program starts at 6 p.m.

Moore College of Art & Design Auditorium
Hear about collaborations and lessons learned from groundbreaking projects and partnerships that will inspire the possibilities between Philadelphia universities and communities. Share your vision for stronger town-gown relationships.

RSVP Required

Philadelphia’s future and competitiveness is connected to its largest industry — the 100 universities in the region. And yet, despite the fact that universities are in the business of educating people, Philadelphia has a larger low-skill, unemployed population than any other major American city. At the same time, many neighborhoods surrounding universities are gentrifying, potentially displacing those who have lived in the neighborhood for years. What are these schools already doing for their communities and what must they be doing better? Hear about collaborations and lessons learned from groundbreaking partnerships that will inspire the possibilities between Philadelphia universities and communities.


Omar Blaik, Founder and Co-CEO of U3 Advisors
Omar Blaik is Co-CEO of U3 Advisors. Omar founded U3 Ventures LLC, a predecessor of today’s firm, in 2006 with the belief that anchor institutions hold the key to sustainable community and economic development in many cities across the country. Omar leads the advisory and development efforts of U3 Advisors, working with university leaders, city and state governments, nonprofit foundations, and real estate developers to provide expertise on institutional anchor strategy, campus edge planning, local economic development, and place-based real estate strategy.


Myla Skinner, Director of Strategy, University of Chicago, Office of Civic Engagement
Myla is responsible for oversight of the civic engagement strategic framework. In this role, she also serves as an internal adviser to other members of the Office of Civic Engagement team in refining and implementing key initiatives, and ensuring that processes are in place to measure the impact of civic engagement efforts through both quantitative and qualitative metrics. Myla has also developed wealth-building and economic development initiatives that seek improve the quality of life for individuals in and around the University’s campus.

Susan T. Mosey, Executive Director of Midtown Detroit, Inc.
Susan T. Mosey has been the Executive Director of Midtown Detroit, Inc. (MDI) in Detroit, Michigan for twenty seven years. This non-profit organization is responsible for community development, marketing, real estate, small business development and arts programming within Detroit’s University Cultural Center and New Center districts – an area now known as Midtown. MDI also manages public space maintenance and security initiatives for the district. Projects that have been undertaken by the organization under her direction include public improvements such as new streetscapes and park development, greenway planning and construction, and residential and commercial real estate development and management. MDI’s newest initiative is the Live Midtown Residential Incentive Program that encourages employees of the anchors to move to Midtown. The organization also produces a number of signature arts events, including Art X Detroit, DLECTRICITY and Noel Night.

Last event in this series:

City Sessions 3: Gentrification, Integration and Equity
December 3, 2014


Moore College of Art & Design
1916 Race St, Philadelphia, PA 19103
Philadelphia , PA
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