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CUE Core Faculty and Staff

CUE is supported by a community of scholars and advisors from every academic division. Core Faculty are primarily appointed in Urban Studies with joint appointments in other departments. Supporting Faculty advance CUE's mission and interdisciplinary programming through their teaching and research in many other departments and programs.


  • Rachel Becker - Graduate Assistant, Wheaton in Chicago
  • Kari Vandervelde - Office Coordinator, Urban Studies Department
  • Christy Vosburg - Assistant Director, Wheaton in Chicago
Gregory Lee - Associate Professor of Theology and Urban Studies

Dr. Gregory Lee is an Associate Professor of Theology and Urban Studies at Wheaton College, where he is also Senior Fellow for The Wheaton Center for Early Christian Studies. His work appropriates Augustine as a resource for addressing contemporary issues of church and society. A resident of the Lawndale neighborhood of Chicago, he is especially interested in urban questions of race and class, which he approaches from a distinctly Asian American perspective. Dr. Lee teaches regularly for Wheaton in Chicago, is a theologian in residence at Lawndale Christian Community Church, and has served for several years as board chair of Manna Christian Fellowship, a campus ministry at Princeton University.

Lilianna Quiroa-Crowell - Visiting Assistant Lecturer in Urban Studies and Anthropology

Prof. Lilianna Quiroa-Crowell teaches Social Life of Cities, Intro to Anthropology, and other topics courses in both Urban Studies and Anthropology. She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Cultural Anthropology at The City University of New York.

Christa Tooley - Associate Professor of Urban Studies and Anthropology

As the Director of the Center for Urban Engagement, as well as the Urban Studies Department Chair, Dr. Christa Tooley teaches Cities in the Global South, The City in Popular Culture, and Placemaking in Urban Contexts. Her research interests include the processes by which cities are developed, navigated, and imagined, and more broadly the intersections of power, place, and culture.

Sean Young - Associate Lecturer in Urban Studies

Dr. Sean Young teaches courses on the history, politics, and communities of Chicago, as well as courses focused on urban development, inequality, and community organizing and social movements. His research interests focus on the role of neighborhood-based, nonprofit organizations and churches in civil society and local politics, and the influence of progressive community-organizing efforts on that relationship. He is the Faculty Director of Wheaton in Chicago and directs the program’s community-based research initiative.