Awards & Honors

Spitzer Alumni Selected as Forefront Fellows

Two Spitzer alumni are among the talented young urbanists selected for the Urban Design Forum’s 2023 Class of Forefront Fellows, Rujuta Naringrekar
(MLA `20) and Matthew Mbamelu (B Arch `16).

Rujuta Naringrekar 
Landscape Designer at Future Green Studio
Rujuta is a landscape designer at Future Green Studio. With a background in architecture and concern about the changing future, Rujuta believes that landscape architecture has the power to regenerate and transform the environment, bringing about positive change. Through her research and work, she aims to enhance the urban experience by building unique connections between communities and their context.

Matthew Mbamelu 
Senior Urban Designer, NYC Department of City Planning
Matthew is an urban designer and social scientist, passionate about creating spaces that improve physical, mental, and social wellness. He has a background in architecture, social welfare, and urban design. Matthew holds a degree in architecture from The City College of New York and a Master of Social Work from Stony Brook University.

The Urban Design Forum convenes civic leaders to confront the defining issues in New York City’s built environment. The Forefront Fellowship selects a diverse cohort of emerging leaders to investigate how design can address a social or political challenge facing New York City. This year’s interdisciplinary cohort will explore urban environments that foster health, well-being, and growth for young people.

Please join us in extending our best wishes to Rujuta and Matthew as they embark on this vital work!