Colorado & communities

As a school of public affairs at a publicly funded university, we are committed to the well-being of our state. Colorado and its diverse communities provide constant opportunities for the School of Public Affairs faculty, staff, students, and alumni to serve the common good through community-based research, experiential learning, and professional and community service.

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Alumni stories

The School of Public Affairs alumni make a huge impact in Colorado! Read their stories.
  • MPA alumna Rachlin Produces Video Series on Barriers and Best Approaches to Effective Environmental Protection

    Jan 19, 2021 by Toula Wellbrook
    For her capstone project, Danielle Rachlin created an hour-long video series for young people featuring environmental enforcement experts. Her capstone experience inspired her to begin a van-life journey across all 50 states to create videos that explore public lands and environmental issues across the country.
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    MPA alumni Bookman and Butler share experiences of leading COVID responses in Colorado

    Sep 11, 2020 by Joan Fishburn
    At both the local and state level, School of Public Affairs alumni have been instrumental in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. Scott Bookman (MPA '15), Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment incident commander for COVID-19, and Geoff Butler (MPA '19), Battalion Chief, Poudre Valley Fire Authority, recently took some time to answer questions about their current roles addressing COVID-19 and how they have grown as leaders dealing with the challenges posed by the pandemic.
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  • Monica-Caballeros-Capstone-850w

    MPA Capstone Highlight: Center for Community Wealth Building

    Sep 10, 2020 by Joan Fishburn
    When MPA alumna Monica Caballeros (MPA ’20) went looking for a capstone project, her focus was on public health and reproductive rights. Caballeros, who is the PR and Communications Director for Connect for Health Colorado, is passionate about equitable access to healthcare. However, when she could not find a good fit in her field, she turned to the school’s list of sourced capstone projects. She found a powerful partnership with the Center for Community Wealth Building that allowed her to look at issues of equity through a lens of economic development.
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    MPA alumni share experiences leading Colorado nonprofits during COVID-19 pandemic

    Sep 8, 2020 by Joan Fishburn
    School of Public Affairs alumni Annie Davies (MPA ’03), Engagement Director Western U.S., at the United Way (formerly Executive Director of United Way Larimer County), and Rachel Fuchs (MPA ’16), Director of Partner Services at Intercambio, recently answered questions on how they, as nonprofit leaders, continue to lead their organizations through challenging times and into the future.
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Our faculty quoted in other media about Colorado issues

Latest news on Colorado & communities

  • Economic Development Class Strengthens San Luis Valley Communities throughout the years

    Nov 16, 2022
    Since 2017, students in Randy Harrison’s ‘Economic Development’ class (PUAD 5630) have had the opportunity to engage with Colorado communities in an experience unlike any felt in a typical classroom. Through its partnership with Downtown Colorado, Inc., this SPA course allows students to become project coordinators in a process known as the Colorado Challenge Program; here, students connect with community members and experts in the field to establish a plan of work to engage public, private, and non-profit partners in addressing a significant community challenge over the course of their semester. Through their partnership, SPA students and DCI have connected with and created initiatives for almost 30 Colorado communities.
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    Five Questions for Michael Penny

    Oct 18, 2022 by Joan Fishburn
    For more than three decades, Michael Penny (MPA '97) has exemplified the ideals of leadership, collaboration, partnership, and teamwork as the administrative manager for both large and small municipalities across Colorado. His passion and dedication to building robust communities that address the critical needs of citizens, businesses, and industry are evidenced by the strong footprint Michael has left in each community he has touched.
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    Recollections on Supporting Team Unstoppable

    May 23, 2022 by Maria Limon
    Maria Limon, Rural Technical Assistance Manager and Fostering Youth Leadership Specialist for the Center on Domestic Violence at the CU Denver School of Public Affairs, shares powerful experiences of working with Team Unstoppable, a group of youth leaders at several high schools in Denver for the last year and a half. They are “an unstoppable movement using humanity’s compassion and love to end all forms of violence.”
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  • Brad Reubendale

    Alum Brad Reubendale: Nourishing a Nonprofit DreamOpens in a new window

    Mar 3, 2022
    CU Denver alum Brad Reubendale, executive director of SAME (So All May Eat) Café on East Colfax, knows all too well what it means to lose everything. At 17, he and his family were excommunicated from the Missouri cult he’d been raised in. “The only humans I knew were my brothers and my parents until I got my feet back under me working in youth services for the Salvation Army.”
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    School of Public Affairs establishes new Center for Policy and Democracy

    Feb 24, 2022 by Toula Wellbrook
    The School of Public Affairs at the University of Colorado Denver has established a new Center for Policy and Democracy (CPD), with the mission of facilitating multi-disciplinary research, teaching, and outreach focused on public policy and democracy within the School of Public Affairs and across CU Denver. The new center, co-directed by Professors Tanya Heikkila and Chris Weible, is holistic in its approach to science, practice, and substantive issues, and seeks diverse and inclusive experiences, perspectives, and participation.
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  • Mandela-Washington-Fellowship-850w

    University of Colorado Denver School of Public Affairs to Host 2022 Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders

    Jan 26, 2022 by Toula Wellbrook
    CU Denver is proud to announce its selection as an Institute Partner for the 2022 Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders. Beginning in mid-June, the CU Denver School of Public Affairs will host 25 of Africa’s bright, emerging Public Management leaders for a six-week Leadership Institute, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State.
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  • Number 20 ranking for the MCJ program for 2022.

    Online MCJ Program Advances to Number 20 in National Ranking

    Jan 25, 2022 by Toula Wellbrook
    The Master of Criminal Justice (MCJ) program at the University of Colorado Denver School of Public Affairs has been ranked number 20 in the nation for 2022—advancing four positions from last year—according to U.S. News & World Report’s Best Online Master’s in Criminal Justice Programs rankings. The program ranks second in Colorado, up one position from last year’s rankings.
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  • New-MPP-Release

    CU Denver School of Public Affairs to launch Master of Public Policy in Fall 2022

    Nov 10, 2021 by Toula Wellbrook
    In its November meeting, the CU Board of Regents approved a new Master of Public Policy (MPP) program to be offered by the University of Colorado Denver School of Public Affairs beginning with the fall 2022 semester.
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  • City-Statewide-Ballot-Propositions-Explained

    City, Statewide Ballot Propositions ExplainedOpens in a new window

    Oct 28, 2021
    For anyone who might feel hesitant to vote in a year that doesn’t feature a presidential election or other prominent races, we offer the advice of Paul Teske, PhD, dean of CU Denver’s School of Public Affairs.
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  • CU-Denver-2021-Pandemic-Awards

    Announcing the Winners of the 2021 CU Denver Pandemic Research and Creative Activities AwardsOpens in a new window

    Oct 27, 2021
    The University of Colorado Denver is proud to announce the winners of the CU Denver 2021 Pandemic Research and Creative Activities Award. Winners from the School of Public Affairs include Dr. Deserai Crow, Professors Angela Gover and Chris Weible, and PhD candidates and lecturers Stephanie Bultema and Jongeun You.
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  • In memoriam: Barbara Paradiso, Center on Domestic Violence

    Jul 30, 2021 by Toula Wellbrook
    The movement to end domestic violence lost a titan in Barbara Paradiso, who passed away suddenly on July 26.
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