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Thread: background needed for grad school?

  1. #1

    background needed for grad school?

    Hello all,

    My interest in urban planning was piqued while completing a grad school internship at a Community Development Corporation. I have a masters is Social Welfare and am somewhat familiar with urban planning, as the urban planning and social welfare departments were both under UCLA's School of Public Affairs. I'm pretty interested in community economic development and gentrification issues.

    I'm interested in applying to masters degree urban planning programs. But I'm not sure if i have the right experience and credentials. Is there a particular profile of an incoming urban planning student? I realize there's a wide spectrum, depending on one's interest area.... but, for example, do most students have a strong econ background? Specific work experience? Technical knowledge?

    Also, how competitive is admittance to a program? A few programs I've looked into are NYU, Berkeley, UCLA. My GRE scores aren't so great, and my GPA is pretty solid (undergrad 3.6, grad 3.8). I have a pretty strong research background working in the non-profit sector.

    If possible, I'd like to hear more about what aptitude is necessary to enter and succeed in an urban planning program.

    Thanks everyone-- I look foward to receiving your input!

  2. #2
    Cyburbian drjb's avatar
    Sep 2006
    Los Angeles

    UCLA Urban Planning

    I am actually starting the masters in urban planning program at UCLA on Monday. Since you already are familiar with the school, I would expect you to have a fairly good shot at getting in to the program. You could go directly to the department's office and ask them what you would need to have to get in. However, as for particular expertise, I don't think it is imperative that you have the technical (more quantitative) knowledge. Especially, if you intend on going into community development you probably will only need a basic economics and math background, but there are probably a lot of people in the program that have limited knowledge of economics or math. I wouldn't worry about it. You probably have a good a shot as any, if not better since you already have a masters from UCLA.

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