UN Sustainability Goals

  • Reduced Inequalities
  • Climate Action
  • Sustainable Cities and Communities

Areas of Excellence

  • Sustainability
  • Urban

Global Challenge: Sustainable Cities and Communities


As a member of a rather unconventional major, the GLASS program at Tandon has largely been a centering and guiding course for me throughout my Tandon experience. I was drawn to the program by the cohort networking, honors extracurriculars, and funding benefits. From a robust set of global experiences that I didn't have the funds or mindset to try, to bolster gaps in my technical skills with STEM core supplemental requirements, and access to technical resources in supply, the material benefits of the GLASS program have had an immense impact on my Tandon and educational experience. I likely would have never have studied abroad without the financial resources and incentives of the GLASS program, from which, I've had 3 GLASS funded global experiences which have significantly affected my collegiate experience and brought me a global community of friends and professional connections. I think I also enhanced the program greatly by filling a more urban and sustainability-centered academic role in how I navigated the program. I bring a very socio-historical aspect to all of the STEM public service and research in and out of the program, that help diversify the academic and disciplinary range of GLASS.  I'm very appreciative of the cohort model and community as well, it’s brought me so many friends and trusted peers moving forward into my career, and I am proud to represent GLASS' second cohort.


Hailing from Northeast DC, Ricardo is currently pursuing a BS in Sustainable Urban Environments at New York University (NYU). Engaged within the NYU community, he holds prestigious scholarships such as the Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship, Udall Environmental Scholarship, and Tandon Engineering GLASS Scholarship. Ricardo's passion lies in tackling urban environmental injustices and socioeconomic disparities, using advocacy, community-engaged scholarship, and urban planning as his tools for change. In 2023, Ricardo dove into the world of policy research and analysis as a Housing Policy Research and Analysis Intern at NYC’s Department of Housing Preservation & Development (HPD). There, he delved into initiatives aimed at enhancing housing affordability, sustainability, and resilience in the city. His research extends to NYC's coastal communities, where he collaborated with organizations like Columbia's Resilient Coastal Communities Project (RCCP), working alongside local residents to address environmental challenges such as flood risks, heat islands, and pollution in the Bronx. Outside of his professional endeavors, Ricardo actively participates in community initiatives, volunteering with the Bronx River Alliance on environmental stewardship and advocacy. These experiences have solidified his commitment to pursuing an MUP with a focus on climate and racial justice land-use planning. Additionally, Ricardo plays a pivotal role in initiatives like Electrify DC, where he serves as both a sustainability intern and engagement associate, working to promote clean electrification and decarbonization efforts in the nation's capital. Ricardo's diverse experiences in policy development, community engagement, and sustainability research highlight his dedication to fostering positive change in urban environments, prioritizing equity and resilience in his endeavors.