Academic Centers and Institutes are essential components of the academic, research, and service mission of the University of the District of Columbia. Centers and Institutes can traverse the boundaries of departments and colleges. They play an essential role in enabling multi-disciplinary and interdisciplinary programs and are a necessary part of the University’s infrastructure.

Centers and Institutes have the potential for strengthening disciplinary programs by providing interdisciplinary course work, offering experiential and service-learning opportunities, facilitating certificate programs, supporting degree programs, enabling high levels of research productivity, and providing external visibility for the University. Because Centers and Institutes are meant to be flexible units, their scope, mission, and size vary considerably. Further, it must also be recognized that Center and Institute activities can be limited within the boundaries of a single department or a single College or School. They can reach across several Colleges and Schools at UDC.

UDC’s various academic centers and institutes offer cross-discipline learning, instructional support, research programs, forums, and community services.

College of Agriculture, Urban Sustainability, and Environmental Sciences


The Center for Nutrition, Diet, and Health (CNDH) offers high-quality, research-based community outreach programs that combat systemic urban nutrition and health issues. CNDH is dedicated to educating residents on the benefits of a healthy lifestyle and the prevention of obesity, heart disease, and other health threats. The program seeks to engage citizens in collaborative efforts to improve community health, obesity prevention, the quality of life, and economic opportunity for the District of Columbia, the nation, and the world.

The Center for Sustainable Development & Resilience (CSDR) provides relevant and innovative applied research opportunities and education to students, District residents, and the global community in the areas of environmental sustainability, sustainable infrastructure and spaces, urban economics and entrepreneurship, resilience, and social change.

The Center for Urban Agriculture and Gardening Education (CUAGE) seeks to expand academic and public knowledge of sustainable farming techniques that improve food and water security. The center also seeks to improve the health and wellness of people in the local community and around the world through research and education on urban and peri-urban agroecology and gardening techniques.
CUAGE plays a key role in two global challenges: urbanization and urban food and nutritional security. The center contributes to sustainable urban development and the creation and maintenance of multifunctional urban landscapes. In the globally emerging field of urban agriculture, CUAGE collaborates in research partnerships within the university and with public and private institutions nationally and internationally.

The mission of the Center for Urban Research, Engagement, and Scholarship (CURES) is to identify and provide collaborative, interdisciplinary, and groundbreaking solutions to urban challenges facing the District of Columbia and beyond, including inequities, climate change, resource degradation and limitations, and inadequate infrastructure and technology.

The mission of the Institute of Gerontology is to help preserve the independence of District of Columbia residents and to support low-income and disabled people 60 years old and above, with high-quality and compassionate volunteer service, through our Senior Companion and Respite Aide programs.

The mission of the Water Resources Research Institute (WRRI) is to provide the District of Columbia with interdisciplinary research support that identifies water resource issues and contributes to solutions. In addition to coordinating and facilitating water resource-related research projects through seed grants provided to faculty members from the consortium of universities in the District, the institute provides training and disseminates research findings that address water issues in the DC area, and beyond.


Dr. Lillie Monroe-Lord

Acting: Dr. Kamran Zendehdel

Mr. Mchezaji “Che” Axum

Acting: Dr. Matthew Richardson


Dr. Tolessa Deksissa

College of Arts and Science


Mission towards strengthening community resilience and capacity building to address undermining destabilizing factors.


Angelyn Flowers

UDC School of Business and Public Administration


LIT Analytics Center’s mission is to provide STEM-Business focused Logistics and International Trade curriculum


Dr. Anshu Arora (Center Director and NSF Grant PI)
Dean Mo Sepehri (Center Advisor and NSF Grant Co-PI)
Dr. Amit Arora (Co-Director and NSF grant Co-PI)
Dr. Pradeep Behera (Co-Director and NSF grant Co-PI)
Dr. Lei Wang (Co-Director and NSF grant Co-PI)

School of Engineering and Applied Science (SEAS)


Research in the area of advanced manufacturing

Promote and conduct research in acoustic and seismic remote sensing of urban environments

For innovation in the rapidly growing area of renewable energy resources


Dr. Pawan Tyagi

Dr. Max Denis

Dr. Amir Shahirinia

Education and research in the area of Nanotechnology

Dr. Pawan Tyagi

Research, education and outreach involving students in the area of Space related technologies

Research on human mobility for unimpaired and impaired populations

High technology student training

Dr. Jiajun Xu

Dr. Lara Thompson

Dr. Kate Klein

Provide real life challenges to students, faculty staff by industry partnerships through projects, research, courses & symposia

Dr. Paul Cotae