Alumni Profiles

After a semester in New York, CITYterm alums span the globe to discover new passions and engage with unique communities. Each month, we’ll highlight one of those alumni here and share the story of a student’s experience after CITYterm. Do you know an alumnus who would be great for such a spotlight? Please email Manyata Berbick to let us know.

Emily Fitzgerald, S'12

CITYterm - Spring 2012
Episcopal School of Dallas - 2013
Wake Forest University - 2017

Standing on the Brooklyn Bridge, in the pouring rain, surrounded by the people who had walked with us through this journey, my semester yelled a “barbaric yawp” to declare our presence in the world. I felt a wave of empowerment and excitement.  I had a deeper understanding and a newfound vigor for exploration.

During my semester at CITYterm, I gained invaluable insight on how I thrive – around certain kinds of people, doing certain kinds of work, and what piqued my interest the most. CITYterm was the first step on my journey of self-discovery. I went to college aware of how much I had to learn and empowered to discover the answers.

In college, I always sought out opportunities where I could collaborate with others and develop my creativity. Very quickly I discovered that I was interested in business and development, but also required a “daily dose” of entrepreneurship and collaboration. As my classmates found their passion for financial analysis, I was constantly drawn to a more creative perspective that was born while at CITYterm. I discovered that my passion is exploring how the urban fabric of a city can spur community development and economic growth.  

Starting in June, I will be a Research Analyst at HR&A Advisors. HR&A is an urban development consulting firm that leads complex mixed-use strategic projects. The firm has a multidisciplinary focus that competes in several industries – including real estate finance, economic-analysis, program design and implementation. Their unifying mission is to revitalize cities into vibrant urban centers that serve diverse communities. Their portfolio spans multiple industries and locations, including economic and fiscal impact studies for The High Line in New York City, program development and implementation for The Lawn on D in Boston, transaction structure and negotiations for the Newseum in the District of Colombia, and economic assessment of the Dallas Park System.

I knew at CITYterm that I loved urban spaces, but I had to stop and examine who I was before I could charge forward with my newfound passion for the urban fabric. Just four months in New York City helped me realize a passion that I wouldn’t have had otherwise been empowered to explore. In terms that only a CITYtermer would understand, that semester pulled me from “the dance floor” to “the balcony,” out of the “DKDK Zone,” and I have been “wondering and wandering” ever since.


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