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  • 6 - Number of graduate programs in the college ranked in the top 100 nationwide by U.S. News and World Report in March 2016
  • Fall 2015 - Launch of the Doctoral Program in Criminal Justice
  • Spring 2016 - Launch of the completely online Master of Social Work (M.S.W.) program
  • 2015-16 - Academic year in which the college recognized 25 years since its founding in 1990-91
  • > 1,700 - Number of children and adults with speech, language and hearing problems served by the Communication Disorders Clinic
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Faculty & Staff Directory

Robyne Stevenson

Robyne Stevenson

, Ph.D., B.A.
Interim Program Director
Doctoral Program in Public Affairs
Employed Since: August 2014

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  • Biography
  • Research
  • Courses


Dr. Stevenson has been an academic since beginning her career in 1978 upon her completion of her MA in Political Science from the Univeristy of Florida. She worked in the Community Action Agency in Jacksonville, FL until she resumed her studies at UF for a doctoral degree in Urban Politics and Urban Planning. Her professional career began at Florida Atlantic University as an Assistant and then tenured Associate Professor in Political Science where she was the coordinator of the graduate MA program in the department, worked with the Institute of Government on numerous projects, and advised Ph.D. students in the Public Administration Program. Working with students and faculty, she received a grant from the SSRC to study urban poverty, had numerous contracts with local governments and nonprofits, and had a 4 year contract through the MacArthur Foundation to do field work for a study on Community Development Corporations in Palm Beach county that was a national project of LISC.

Dr. Stevenson accepted the position of Schutte/Missouri Professor of Urban Affairs at the University of Missouri-Kansas City in 2002. There, she also was the first Faculty in Residence at the UMKC Center for the City. Later she became Director of the Cookingham Institute for Public Affairs and Chair of the Department of Public Affairs. She worked with Ph.D. and MPA students on numerous contracts with local governments and nonprofits as well as hosting successful workshops, programs and a certificate in Community Economic Development. The Institute under her leadership was awarded a HUD Minority Graduate Student grant to fully fund students in the MPA, a partnership with the Peace Corp for returning volunteers to become MPA students, and the first university partnership with Social Compact, Inc. to undertake their DrillDown study in Kansas City, MO.

In 2008, Dr. Stevenson joined the faculty at Rutgers University - Camden as the Chair of the Department of Public Policy and Administration where she led the successful creation and launch of the first interdisciplinary Ph.D. program in Public Policy with an emphasis on Urban Community Development. The department also successfully began an Executive MPA and took on the undergraduate Urban Studies degree program.

From 2012-2014 Dr. Stevenson took on a new challenge as a social entrepreneur, launching a new company - Viable Third Community, LLC which has successfully operated the Community360 program for transformational leadership for high school and college students as well as education professionals and community organizations. In addition VTC has held contracts for civic and public engagement, strategic management, and organizational planning in areas such as urban food access, social entrepreneurship, and technology access for small business.

Dr. Stevenson's professional publications and background can be found under her former name - Dr. Robyne S. Turner.


  • Ph.D., Urban Politics and Urban Planning, University of Florida
  • B.A. , Political Science, University of Florida
  • Research

    My passion is in urban community development. Broadly defined it centers on the contest over urban land. This entails understanding how neighborhoods compete with commercial and institutional uses of land as well as how the urban land economy forces neighborhood changes. Such changes are many, but my interest lies in how low and moderate income communtities are affected by displacement, gentrification, urban redevelopment, systemic discrimination and institutional policies, as well as how community organization, social capital, and social enterprise can create new outcomes.

    I have worked with cities, community development corporations, school districts, counties, neighborhood associations, nonprofits, and social entrepreneurs as part of my academic career that has spanned 4 institutions to date: Florida Atlantic University, University of Missouri-Kansas City, Rutgers University - Camden, and now UCF.  At each of these institutions I have been involved in creating partnerships between university and community through service learning, research contracts, workshops/talks/programs/ showcases, graduate student internships and practicums, and formal partnership agreements between town and gown. The expansive knowledge of a university is wasted if it is not plugged into the world around it. For me, that world is urban core communities and the development that surrounds them.

    Dr. Stevenson's publications can be found under her former name - Dr. Robyne S. Turner


    • PAF7000: Foundations of Public Affairs: People, Places, Policies and Paradigms
      Provides an overview of public affairs and is taught from an interdisciplinary perspective focused on the necessary components to effectively address community-based problems. There is an emphasis on translational research as an effective means to bring research to bear on community issues.

    The health care informatics master's program at UCF really helped me connect with the industry, meet people at conferences and sit for the most-desired certification exams."
    — Michael Neimann,  M.S. in health care informatics ('14)
    My internship with the District 9 Medical Examiner’s Office was one of the greatest experiences of my life. I gained an excellent understanding of the medical examiner’s office and the criminal justice field in general."
    — Adam Stubley,  B.S. in criminal justice, criminal profiling certificate ('11)
    UCF provides its physical therapy students with an excellent education and prepares them to work in the most challenging of settings."
    — Jamie Dyson,  Rehabilitation Supervisor, Orlando Regional Medical Center
    UCF's program provided me the opportunity to expedite my student experience while attaining practical experience working within local health systems."
    — Daniel Barr,  V.P. at National Children's Hospital; M.S. in health sciences, health services administration track ('04)
    My master's education helped me see the big picture of the nonprofit industry. UCF showed me how to see the different fundraising tools within the Central Florida area."
    — Krysti Griffith,  Executive Director of Growth from Grief; Master of Nonprofit Management ('12)
    The course opened my eyes to grant writing ... I learned a great deal and you [Barbara Howell] are truly an excellent instructor."
    — Deborah Reith,  Master of Public Administration student who secured a $10,000 federal grant through a course project; B.S. in criminal justice ('86)
    The skills I learned during my time at UCF are what made my transition to law school so seamless."
    — Jacqueline Iaquinta,  Touro Law Center student; B.S. in legal studies ('10)
    As an inaugural graduate of the M.R.A. program at UCF, I can attest to the outstanding curriculum developed for research administrators. "
    — April Heyward,  Post Award Services Coordinator, University of South Carolina; Master of Research Administration ('13)
    It was at UCF that I first learned many of the skills that I’ve since honed, including mapping with GIS software - an ability I found invaluable to my search for internships, graduate-level coursework, and employment."
    — Richard "Ben" Hagen,  Research and Communications Associate, New Economy Project, New York City; B.S. in public administration ('10)
    I am excited to be able to give back to the program that invested so much in me. It is truly and honor and a privilege."
    — Carlos Gual,  Instructor of Athletic Training; B.S. in athletic training ('09)
    The faculty advisor [at my medical school] was amazed that I had the opportunity to truly participate in the full spectrum of research as an undergraduate. "
    — Chase Cavayero, medical student at Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicince, B.S. in health sciences - pre-clinical ('13),  
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