Student Profile

Elizabeth Hayes

Elizabeth is a double major with Geography and Citizenship & Civic Engagement. On campus, she is active in University 100. As a part of this organization, she provides campus tours to prospective students and their families and assists the office of admissions with various tasks. Elizabeth has been a part of the Syracuse University/ESF chapter of Habitat for Humanity and acted as the volunteer coordinator for two years. She participates as a Global Ambassador for the Syracuse University Abroad office and is involved with the College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s Team for which she mentors first year students.

Fall semester sophomore year, Elizabeth completed her community placement at Syracuse Community Geography (SCG) with Professor Jonnell Robinson. SCG’s mission is to aid other non-profit organizations in Syracuse that are in need of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) analysis. For example, If an organization needs to determine the most advantageous location to place a food bank so it can best aid the Syracuse population, SCG can provide geographical analysis. The organization is also heavily involved with the Onondaga Citizens League and is responsible for many of the community garden in Syracuse. During her internship with SCG, Elizabeth was able to do research for the Onondaga Citizens League on their annual project to determine the benefits or downsides of a universal pre-k system in Syracuse.

The summer after her sophomore year, Elizabeth interned with Representative Dan Maffei in Washington DC. This opportunity allowed her to better understand the inner workings of congress and gain professional experience working in an office setting. Her responsibilities included answering phone calls from constituents, writing letters, and attending congressional hearings and taking notes to brief the office on the interesting topic. “Through this experience”, Elizabeth says, “I learned about the issues my district, which includes Syracuse, is concerned with and how a congressional office goes about addressing those concerns. It really opened my eyes to the importance of citizenship and being civically involved!”

Fall semester of her junior year, Elizabeth spent her time in South Africa through one of SU’s World Partner Programs. The organization is call SIT, or School for International Training, and the program was entitled Multiculturalism and Human Rights. SIT believes in experiential learning so Elizabeth was able to live with four different host families of different racial and socioeconomic backgrounds to experience all aspects of South African life. Also as a part of the program, she performed an independent research project. The research studied the effects of gentrification on the social, economic, and cultural landscapes of Bo Kaap, a neighborhood in Cape Town. Elizabeth continued this research for her MAX 302 research project, but applied her knowledge to studying gentrification as it is happening in Brooklyn, New York.

Elizabeth’s senior year has been spent interning with the Sustainability Division at Syracuse University where she is working to promote recycling on campus as well as a rideshare program called Zimride. Her senior project for Citizenship and Civic Engagement is working to get a bottle and can return machine on SU’s campus to increase the university’s recycling rates.