A year-long, experiential learning program for undergraduate students designed to help alleviate poverty and inequality in Greater Houston.

The application for the 2021-2022 program is now active and will be open until April 30th. You can find it here.

Are you interested in applying to be a 2020-2021 Community Bridges Fellow? Attend one of our virtual lunchtime information sessions, which will be held from 12-1pm on:

  • Friday, March 5, 2021
  • Wednesday, March 17, 2021
  • Tuesday, April 6, 2021
  • Monday, April 19, 2021

Complete this form to receive Zoom meeting details. We hope to connect with you soon!


The Community Bridges program pairs academic study with active fieldwork to address urban inequality and poverty issues.

Strategic Goals

While studying theories and practices on the topics in the classroom, students are also placed with a community organization in one of Houston’s disadvantaged neighborhoods to carry out a research-driven project that aims to reduce poverty in the community. Every spring, sophomore, junior and senior Community Bridges Fellows carry out faculty-supervised research projects that sustainably expand our partner organizations’ ability to address poverty-related issues in Greater Houston while enrolled in a sociology course on urban inequality. Students will earn a total of five upper-level credits while participating in the program. The Community Bridges program has different components in the fall and spring and the opportunity for fellows to apply for two summer fellowship slots and extend their placement through the summer.


Community Bridges works with a variety of community partners including Air Alliance Houston, BakerRipley, Fifth Ward Community Redevelopment Corporation, LINK Houston and more.

Click here to view an interactive story map about how lthe 2018-2019 cohort designed and conducted projects to address the needs of their partner organizations and communities.


Reflections from 2019-2020 Community Bridges Fellow Susanna Yau:

“My Community Bridges fellowship was one of the highlights of my time at Rice. In addition to learning about urban sociology in the classroom, my internship with Fifth Ward Community Redevelopment Corporation allowed me to better understand what urban inequality looks like in Houston and the work being done to alleviate it. I am so thankful for the ways I have been able to get to know and learn from the Fifth Ward community through Community Bridges, from authoring a white paper on the need for affordable artist housing in developing communities to helping 220 households receive grants through the Harris County COVID Relief Program. My Community Bridges fellowship led to a funded summer fellowship and eventually a full-time AmeriCorps position with Fifth Ward CRC, and I can confidently say that I would not be where I am today without the support of Community Bridges.”

—  Susanna Yau, 2019-2020 Community Bridges Fellow

Click here for a list of Community Bridges alumni.

Learn More

See here for other past student projects:

2019-2020 Community Bridges Summer Fellow Presentation

2018-2019 Community Bridges story map

2017-2018 Community Bridges story map

2016-2017 Community Bridges story map

Featured Urban Edge Stories


Head shot of Jie Wu

Jie Wu

  • Director of Research Management, Kinder Institute for Urban Research
  • Research Oversight Committee, Urban Data Platform


Head shot of Katie Wang

Katie Wang

  • Program Manager, Kinder Institute for Urban Research
Dan Bolger

Dan Bolger

  • Community Bridges Instructor, Kinder Institute for Urban Research