Home > Projects > South University Neighborhood Planning

This project initiated outreach efforts in the South University Neighborhood (SUN) and the West of 4th Street Neighborhood, as well as activated the assessment process of existing neighborhood conditions. This included documentation of resident’s perceptions of their community. On the day of the survey, 50 teams of SJSU graduate and undergraduate student
teams canvassed the neighborhood. The surveys documented resident’s levels of social connectedness, community engagement, and thoughts about their community. The goals of the assessment project were threefold: 1) analyze results of the door-to-door survey conducted in September 2015, 2) conduct a building and block conditions survey, and 3) identify and define neighborhood priorities. The students presented their findings at a community open house, where they were able to collect further feedback to strengthen their analysis.

By the Numbers | 2015-16

122 SJSU students engaged

227 residents engaged

2,640 hours of service

$60,904 value

Project Impact

In surveying 196 buildings in total, the SUN project provided SJSU community-engaged learners and faculty with the opportunity to apply their academic learning to real-life situations. Students were afforded valuable work experience in a local community, and the opportunity to nurture positive ties between residents, local governing bodies, and the
university. Approximately 600 homes were visited, resulting in over 200 completed surveys by residents. The door-to-door survey provided residents an opportunity to voice their concerns and dreams for their neighborhood and created an invaluable baseline of information regarding current public perceptions. Residents were able to actively participate in a dialogue on how to improve their neighborhood and now have a deeper understanding into the strengths and weaknesses to leverage for future improvement.

Community Voices

“The students were able to interact with the community in multiple languages and were very professional in their commitment to get input that reflected the diversity of the neighborhood. We are so grateful for that commitment… The wisdom and commitment in creating the relationship first was so impressive! Thank you for going above and beyond!”
–Jennifer Goto, the Pastor of St. Paul’s United Methodist Church

“I really feel like I have contributed enormously to the South University Neighborhood and know that the efforts my class and I took to understanding their needs will go to great use in improving their community.”
–SJSU student

Support for SUN Community Planning: