Announcing Department of Urban and Regional Planning, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa Fall 2023 Graduates

By Genesis Leong

Alice McLean

Using Transfer of Development Rights (TDR) to Facilitate Coastal Managed Retreat on North Short, Oʻahu

Alice is a Fall 2023 MURP graduate. During her time at DURP, Alice worked as a Research Assistant for the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa Institute for Sustainability and Resilience (ISR). In her final semester, she also worked as an intern planner at SSFM International, where she was hired full-time upon graduating. Prior to joining DURP, Alice received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology from UH Mānoa (2011), and worked locally for a non-profit news organization and later a non-profit community land trust. Her interests include climate change mitigation and adaptation, land use planning, and managed retreat as a response to coastal hazards.

Conrad Newfield

Capturing Beach Loss: The Effects of Coastal Erosion on Residential Housing Markets in Hawaiʻi

Conrad is a Fall 2023 PhD graduate. In his time at DURP, he worked for two years as a graduate assistant for Dr. Makena Coffman in the Institute for Sustainability and Resilience. His research involved analyzing the costs and benefits of managed retreat in Hawaiʻi, exploring the effect of sea level rise on local housing markets, and studying transfer of development rights programs. Prior to joining DURP, he received Bachelor’s in applied mathematics and engineering physics from the University of Colorado Boulder (2017-2020). He plans to continue working in climate-related research in Hawaiʻi on any variety of topics ranging from mauka to makai.

Evelyn Navas-Aron

Integrating Equitable and Just Approaches for Community-led Resilience Planning and Capacity Building: Adapting Cultural Humility Practices in Emergency Planning

Evelyn is a Fall 2023 MURP and DMHA Certificate graduate. During her final semester at DURP, Evelyn worked as an intern planner with G70’s Planning and Environmental Services team, where she was offered a full-time position upon graduation. Prior to joining the MURP program, Evelyn earned a double-major Bachelor’s in Criminal Justice and Sociology from Alfred University, in upstate New York. She is originally from San Salvador, El Salvador. Evelyn’s main areas of interest include disaster management; disaster risk reduction; community engagement; diversity, inclusivity & equity in planning; and asset-based community development.

Lily Zheng

Design Considerations for Livable Moderate-Density TOD

Lily is a Fall 2023 MURP Graduate. During her time in the program, she worked as a teaching assistant for DURP, while also working as an intern and later an Assistant Transportation Planner for the Oahu Metropolitan Planning Organization (OahuMPO), where she continues to work today. Prior to joining the MURP program, Lily earned a Bachelor’s of Environmental Design degree from the University of Hawaii at Manoa in 2020. Her primary interests while at DURP included transportation planning, transit-oriented development, visual survey research methods, and the design of moderate-density residential developments.

Perry Arrasmith

The Permanent Master Plan: Water, Agricultural Lands, The 1978 Constitutional Convention, and Hawaiʻi's Political Crisis of Planning

Perry is a Spring 2023 MURP graduate. In his time at DURP, he worked as a research assistant on two projects documenting Hawaiian Home Lands in the Wai‘anae Moku of O‘ahu and the construction of the H-3 Highway System and as a special historical research assistant at the School of Communication and Information. In his last semester, Perry began working for the administration of Governor Josh Green. Prior to joining DURP, Perry received a Bachelor of History from Harvard College (2016) and thereafter worked in the local think tank sector and in state and local government on housing policy. Arrasmith's research interests concern land use, environmental planning, the construction of regulatory frameworks, the intersections of policy-making and planning, and the political culture of planning in Hawaiian archipelago.

Victor Gregor Limon

Exploring the Spatial Variability of COVID-19 in Honolulu, HI

Victor is a Fall 2023 MURP graduate. His research focused on analyzing spatial variation in COVID-19 cases rates in Honolulu, with focus on density, housing, and zoning variation. He currently works as a data analyst at the city’s Climate Change Office. Victor’s book, An Atlas of West Maui, is forthcoming from the University of Hawaiʻi Press.

Yoko Kawai

Honolulu Chinatown as a Convivial Neighborhood-oriented Commercial District: Prospects for Community-Driven Governance

Yoko is a Fall 2023 MURP Graduate. While in the program, she did Service Learning at the Hawaii Chinese History Center, supporting categorizing and digitizing materials. Before joining the MURP program, she earned a Master’s degree in Sustainable Urban Regeneration and Urban Engineering from the University of Tokyo, Japan, in 2019 (Thesis title: Study about Shopping Area Activation by the Newcomer-Ethnic Entrepreneurs - From the Angle of the Multicultural Community Development). Her main areas of interest include diversity, inclusivity & equity in planning, particularly revitalizing ethnic enclaves such as small ethnic business and community development.

On behalf of the Department of Urban and Regional Planning and its ‘ohana, congratulations on this momentous occasion! We are honored to have you all as DURP graduates and incredibly proud of your accomplishments. We hope you all took away ideas, experiences, and relationships to cherish as you continue your journey, and your DURP years will be among the most memorable ones in your lives. Stay in touch!

Dr. Priyam Das,

Chair, Department of Urban and Regional Planning

University Students of Urban and Regional Planning Student Council (USURP)

The University Students of Urban and Regional Planning Student Council (USURP) is a University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa departmental student council composed of Department of Urban and Regional Planning (DURP) students. Our mission is to empower DURP students by improving student well-being and academic experience through peer support, extracurricular endeavors, leadership opportunities and a forum for innovative ideas.