Lauren Bulka is a DC area native returning to the area to begin Virginia Tech’s Masters in Urban and Regional Planning program. After graduating in May 2011 from the University of Virginia with a Bachelors in Urban and Environmental Planning and a minor in architecture, she began her Masters studies this summer while abroad with Tech’s “Sustainable Europe” course. Continuing her fascination with the concept of sustainability, she is currently working with Professor Joe Schilling on various research endeavors into this topic. With a strong undergraduate background in community development, she looks to meld this and the sustainability research with her other interests including; economic development, historic preservation, and urban land use.
Fanny Carlet is a PhD candidate in Planning, Governance and Globalization (PGG) at Virginia Tech in Alexandria, VA. Born and raised in Italy, she moved to the US more than six years ago and currently live in Arlington, VA. Her background is in Architectural Engineering, and prior to joining Virginia Tech she was employed as a structural engineer both in Italy and in the US. Fanny is currently working as a research assistant on the Sustainability Planning Lab project and other sustainability-related issues at the MI. She previously held a GRA position at the Department of Urban Affairs and spent the first three years of her PhD program working on a project at the intersection of climate change, urban growth and stormwater management, funded by the Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science (ICTAS) at Virginia Tech. Her research interests include sustainability and environmental planning, green infrastructure planning and the impact of land use and environmental planning practices on natural resources and ecosystem services. Fanny’s dissertation focuses on green infrastructure and investigates local jurisdictions’ experiences and planning efforts with green infrastructure programs.
Fatima Sparger Sharif is a third year PhD student with Virginia Tech’s Center for Public Administration and Policy and a Graduate Assistant in the Office of the Senior Fellow for Resource Development. Her interest is in public health policy as it relates to the social determinants of health and health equity. She has taken part in community health research as a Summer Urban Health Fellow with the Harbor-UCLA Department of Family Medicine, co-founded a public health student organization at the College of William and Mary focused on a cross-cultural exchange on HIV/AIDS, worked on rural and minority health issues in the Office of Minority Health and Public Health Policy at the Virginia Department of Health, and researched the use of evidence in health policymaking in low and middle-income countries at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She has a Bachelor’s in Interdisciplinary Studies (International Public Health) from the College of William and Mary and a Master of Public Health from Johns Hopkins University. Her current research focuses on the factors that affect mammography utilization in geographic clusters with disparate breast cancer health outcomes.