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Thread: Online certificate in planning? Planning program at TAMU?

  1. #1

    Online certificate in planning? Planning program at TAMU?

    Hi all,
    I'm currently in the military but planning on getting out and I'm interested in city planning as a possible next career. Does anyone know if there is any online certificate program that would allow me to just get a taste for it before I commit to a full-blown master's program (and have a little something to put on my resume if I decide to pursue a career in planning)?

    Also, does anyone have any insight (good or bad) about the planning program at Texas A&M?


  2. #2
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
    Aug 2001
    The Cheese State
    What do you do in the military?* Often, military occupations will transfer some value over to a civilian career. If nothing else, I found that my background opened a few doors with the crusty old city council or commission members who happened to be veterans themselves. There are also good careers in military installation planning, and they almost always only hire veterans.

    * By military, I hope you mean Army, Navy, Marines, of Coast Guard. Contrary to popular belief, the air corps is not a legitimate branch of the armed services.

  3. #3
    Kansas State offers an on-line degree in environmental planning. You have to be in the military, but I don't know what the other requirements are.

    Penn State offers a certificate in community development.

    As far as Texas A&M, I am a graduate of their program. It was very good when I was there in the mid-90s. It went downhill for a while, but has strengthened dramatically over the past few years. Overally I felt I got an excellent education.

  4. #4
    Thanks for the insight. I'm curious if you felt the planning program at TAMU is at a disadvantage at all for being in a small town?

    I'm stationed in Houston and it's also where I grew up so going to TAMU is appealing to me simply because of the location (I want to stay close to my family and also return to Houston after I graduate since I think Houston is a city that is in dire need of some good planning!)


  5. #5
    The only disadvantage is a lack of many internship opportunities. Most students do internships in Houston or some other city over the summer.

    I was lucky and was able to intern and then work full-time for the City of College Station.

  6. #6
    Sep 2005
    South Royalton, VT

    Side note

    Nice to see another BU-an in the forum....

  7. #7
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
    Jun 2003
    at the neighboring pub
    Most people on here no that I am not a fan of the Texas A&M program. The program there went in the pooper for a few years, from about 1998 to 2002, but is starting to show improved signs of life. You won't get a bad education there in any program. From what I've heard, internships can be a royal pain to find because College Station is a little distant from a metropolitan area and often require you to move. The alumni are intensly loyal though and have a killer network for finding jobs once you finish.

    I would look at the Penn State certificate program to get a sample. If you like it, I would recommend UT-Arlington over Texas A&M for a Masters. It is a very well respected program located in an area with internships and jobs galore.

    I think Ohio State and CU-Denver offer a certificate as well, but I'm not sure.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  8. #8
    Feb 2006

    TAMU's program Redeemed

    I started my TAMU master's in planning program in 2002, graduating in 2004, and from my perspective, it was a very good learning experience. i think 2002 saw an increase from 10 to like 40+ students, and new professors were coming in. the main problem i remember was that the college of architecture usually put much more emphasis on other programs aside from planning, but that has changed. and yes, the networking opportunties of being an AGGIE are a huge bonus. i now work at university of maryland, and i got my job b/c of a forwarded message from my advisor. i would recommend knowing what emphasis of planning u are going into (mine was environmental) and talk to professors in that field.

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