Date of Degree Completion

Spring 2024

Degree Type

Capstone - Open Access


Dr. Melissa Nemon & Dr. Audrey Falk


Gentrification and its impact on immigrant communities are complex and evolving phenomena deeply intertwined with the racial and immigrant histories specific to each city. Hwang (2015) argues that gentrification perpetuates racial and ethnic inequality across urban landscapes, highlighting the need for comprehensive approaches to address its effects on immigrant populations. This study examines the intersection of gentrification, immigrant entrepreneurship, and community development, emphasizing the significance of fostering a sense of belonging and social capital within immigrant communities. Building on existing research, this capstone proposes a community project aimed at welcoming immigrants, integrating them into local communities, and facilitating their success in the United States. This proposed initiative seeks to connect residents with immigrant-owned businesses through storytelling, art, and community engagement activities. Through a qualitative research design, collecting data from interviews of key stakeholders in the community, this project was able to discern relevant information by posing questions surrounding the importance of integrating immigrants into a city where they are otherwise removed socially and economically. All respondents found that the project cultivated community pride, enhanced interpersonal relationships, and through exposing the public to historical and cultural contexts, created a positive reaction to foreign concepts. Through this effort, gentrified neighborhoods can move closer to realizing the goal of empowering immigrants, promoting collaboration, achieving economic stability, and encouraging resilience among diverse community members.