The Department of Architecture, Urban Planning + Design makes values community engagement and takes the task of applied research and design seriously. Many of our courses are developed in collaboration with community partners to engage students in practical issues that face people in the city and our region. The Center for Neighborhoods provides a public forum for the development of neighborhood leadership and governance in Kansas City.

The value of our hard work in community engagement has been recognized with these awards:

  • 2016, UMKC Trustees Award for Service
  • 2014, the Department received the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Community Engagement
  • 2008, President’s Higher Education Honor Roll for Community Engagement


We make a point to study a widely diverse cross section of our city and its environs (and sometimes beyond). Being involved in real-life situations helps both our students and our community. To learn more about what we’ve done so far (or what we’re doing now), please visit our interactive map of projects.


Think you might have an idea for a future area of study? We’re always happy to talk, and see if your situation has a place in the curriculum. You can contact our department using the information at right. (An email describing what you’re thinking of is best, and easiest to get to the right person.)