A father with his family, and a teacher with her students

General Information About CUPPA

The College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs is a nationally recognized innovator in education, research, and engagement in support of the nation's cities and metropolitan areas. Our adherence to our unique blend of basic research, university-community engagement, policy analysis, and profession-based graduate programs attracts the best and brightest students and reinforces the connections between our research centers and our academic programs. The college has:

• Bachelor of Arts Degrees in Public Policy and Urban Studies

• Master's Degrees in Public Administration and Urban Planning and Policy

• Doctor of Philosophy Degrees in Public Administration and Urban Planning and Policy

• Minors in Geographic Information Systems (GIS), Public Policy and Urban Studies

• Certificate Programs in Geospatial Analysis and Visualization (GSAV) and Survey Research Methods

• Accelerated MPA (Master's in Public Administration)

• 450 current students

• Links with more than 100 public service organizations and private companies in the Chicago area who host CUPPA students in internships each year

• More than 36 courses in Urban Planning and Public Administration

• 38 tenure and research faculty

• 200 full- and part-time employees

• More than 1,400 alumni

• Eight research centers and institutes

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The CUPPA Mission Statement

To provide innovative urban planning and public management education that puts engaged research to purposeful use at home and abroad.

Core values:

We share a commitment to:

• Striving for academic excellence and providing inspirational learning experiences for our students

• Making a contribution beyond the university that informs and empowers citizens,clients and communities in the neighborhood, city, region, state, nation and across the globe

• Respect for the unique individual contributions of faculty to scholarship, students to learning, and staff to service with a concern for each member's intellectual and professional development

• Encouraging cultural diversity in the composition of faculty, staff and students given the importance of multi-cultural understanding for effective governance of a rapidly urbanizing world

• Collaboration that crosses disciplines, programs and other institutional divides to generate more successful inquiry, learning, and service outcomes than insulated approaches

• Innovation in the pursuit of new resources and responsibility in the stewardship of existing ones

• Learning that anticipates future needs and crafts sustainable solutions

The Distinctive Contribution

The College pursues its mission by weaving together three commitments: to innovative education, to engaged research, and to making an influential contribution to policy and practice. The intertwining of these three strands of multi-disciplinary scholarship is special. Day in and day out, CUPPA strives to interweave the discovery of new knowledge with the education of students and the application of research findings to pressing public problems.

Intertwining of Three Commitments

CUPPA faculty, students and staff design and implement multi-disciplinary scholarship using knowledge, tools, resources and talents drawn from the domains of education, research and service. The collaboration adds value to more routine activities within each domain. For example, classroom learning is enlivened by new research and practical case studies, research reports are informed by relevant policy concerns, and collaboration with partners gives access to excellence for those outside the university.

By offering innovative courses attracting talented students and professionals, by working closely with colleagues in other UIC colleges to enhance urban scholarship, by attracting funds from external organizations and individuals, and by providing informed advice to city leaders, public service professionals and urban communities, CUPPA aims to show how UIC can make a difference locally, nationally and internationally to the discourse about urban planning and public affairs as well as the practice of city planning and public management.

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CUPPA Student Body Profile

CUPPA's Public Administration and Urban Planning and Policy programs consist of more than 500 students from all walks of life. Some have professional experience in either field and some have an established work history in unrelated fields. Still others migrate from traditional undergraduate programs into master's coursework and from master's programs into the PhD coursework.

The University of Illinois at Chicago maintains no ethnic majority, and CUPPA has students and/or alumni representing almost every continent on the globe.

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About the Dean

Our Mission

CUPPA Student Body Profile

CUPPA Strategic Plan (Updated 2013)


412 S. Peoria, Suite 115 Chicago, IL 60607

University Mail 115 CUPPAH MC 350

General Information  (312) 413-8088

Fax (312) 413-8095

E-mail cuppa@uic.edu