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Program Overview

Program Overview

What makes a city struggle or thrive? How do we shape cities — and how do cities shape us? How can we live harmoniously together in urban spaces? These are all foundational questions that we seek to explore, using Nashville as our primary case study.

A flourishing future depends on our understanding of the complexity of cities and the possibilities they offer. Nashville is full of both — traverse its intricate political, social and economic terrain, and gain hands-on experience with its diverse leaders and neighborhoods. Study a curriculum shaped by public officials, neighborhood activists and business owners. Draw from diverse disciplines to analyze the issues faced by urban areas and create blueprints for a stronger future.

We are preparing grounded leaders for public service, entrepreneurial ventures and nonprofit impact. You’ll have opportunities to live out your faith in a community that extends beyond Lipscomb’s campus. Build bridges: crossing highways and connecting people.

Admissions Requirements

Admissions Requirements

Standard admission requirements.



Major requirements

  • UBN 2003 - Introduction to Urban Studies (3)
  • UBN 3013 - The Church and the City (3)
  • UBN 2013 - Race, Ethnicity, and the City (3)
  • UBN 3023 - Urban Policy and Planning (3)
  • UBN 3033 - Sustaining the City: Environmental Issues of Urban Life (3)
  • UBN 4983 - Urban Studies Seminar: Research and Practice (3)
  • UBN 3043 - Using Technology to Build Better Cities (3)
  • UBN 2023 - Wealth, Poverty, and the City (3)
  • UBN 4993 - Urban Studies Capstone (3)
  • UBN 3903 - Urban Studies Internship
  • PO 2253 - American State and Local Government (3)
  • HI 4153 - Urban History and Politics (3)
  • LJS 3303 - Influencing Change through Civic Engagement (3)



Students may choose 3 of the following for electives to complete the major requirements:

  • SW 2313 - Social Welfare Policy and Services (3)
  • SW 1103 - Introduction to Social Work (3)
  • ESS 2123 - Principles of Sustainability (3)
  • ESS 1024 - The science of green living (4)
  • ESS 4223 - Fundamentals of Environmental Management and Technology (3)
  • ESS 4213 - Environmental Law and Policy (3)
  • PO 3313 - Public Administration (3)
  • PO 3323 - Public Administration II (3)
  • PO 3123 - Public Policy (3)
  • PS 2503 - Behavioral Statistics (3)
  • EC 2403 - Principles of Macroeconomics (3)
  • EC 2413 - Principles of Microeconomics (3)
  • LJS 3403 - Conflict Management (3)
  • ESS 3224 - Principles of Water Resources and Systems Management (4)
  • HI 4173 - The American Civil Rights Movement (3)


Tuition & Aid

Tuition & Aid

Standard tuition and aid.

Nashville, TN

A big city. An even bigger opportunity. We consider Nashville, Tennessee, an extension of our classroom, and as a leading city in many industries, that means you’ll gain experience and insight you won’t find anywhere else.

Expert faculty, small class sizes

Learn from award-winning, experienced faculty who actually care about you. Our small class sizes allow us to get to know you personally. We lead an approachable community within our respective programs. Our faculty connections are the experts on their subject matter, too.

Service learning

We provide you the opportunity to enhance your academic understanding by applying what you’ve learned in class to service projects that benefit our community. Before graduation, you’ll participate in at least two SALT (Serving and Learning Together) projects.

Our Faculty

  • Beth Morrow headshot

    Beth Morrow

    Assistant Dean

    Beth Morrow works in the community and in the classroom in Nashville, Tenn. Morrow serves as a strategic planning and change-management consultant on behalf of the Center for Nonprofit Management,...

    Meet Beth Morrow
  • Emily Stutzman Jones headshot

    Emily Stutzman

    Associate Professor

    With a M.S. in rural sociology and Ph.D. in forestry from Auburn University, Emily Stutzman joined the Institute for Sustainable Practice in January 2015 as our full-time Academic Director. She...

    Meet Emily Stutzman

Career Paths


Lawyers advise and represent individuals, businesses and government agencies on legal issues and disputes.

Nonprofit sector

A nonprofit organization furthers a specific social cause or advocates for a shared point of view. Economically, it is an organization that uses its surplus of revenue to further its ultimate objective, rather than distributing that income to its shareholders, leaders, or members.

Government and public policy

Government employees work at federal, state or local levels. Public policy is generally defined as a system of laws, regulations, courses of action and funding priorities regarding a specific topic by a governmental entity or its representatives.