Student blog of the Stanford University Urban Studies Department

Urban Studies Fellowship: Week 3! (Cassandra Calderon)

Hello all!

This week has been super interesting and busy. However, I would like to start off my blog with what I consider to be the highlight of my week. As I mentioned earlier, The Woodlands Area EDP is an integral part of The Woodlands Community and is involved in many different aspects. As a consequence, this past Monday I was able to attend a private hearing in which Carlos Gutierrez, former US Secretary of Commerce, talked about the upcoming immigration bill. As an immigrant, I could truly connect with Mr. Gutierrez. The discussion mostly dealt about the significance for passing the immigration bill and what it meant for Republicans to support the bill. Mr. Gutierrez made interesting remarks that really captured my attention. 

Throughout the week, I got to attend other smaller meetings. For example, I attended the Commercial Real Estate Association’s monthly meeting where the members discussed the construction and opening of a nearby county-owned public-use airport. I learned about the importance of having public-use airports, which to be honest, I never really gave them any importance. I also accompanied Laura Lea to one of her business retention and expansion meetings. We got to go to GE’s Water & Process Technology Headquarters here in The Woodlands. I didn’t even know that GE had an office in Houston! Every day I am learning something new about my own community.

Now, regarding my own research project. Responses are coming in (: However, I have received many more responses from businesses than from residents. As a consequence, this morning I visited more than a dozen community centers, such as YMCA’s, churches, departments, and recreational facilities to drop off a copy of the flyer describing my research (a snapshot of the flyer is shown below). I will be visiting more organizations next week to promote the surveys. 

Gil Staley, the CEO of The Woodlands EDP, has truly helped me with the project. He has put me in contact with various people, who have also helped me distribute the surveys. On Wednesday, I visited the Woodlands Area webpage in order to get more background information of the area and this is what I found: 


I was so happy to see my survey on the webpage. Hopefully, I will be very busy next week collecting all the survey responses. Will keep you posted 🙂



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