As you all may know, I finished up my BS and am considering graduate school (MLA). Before I charge into that program, I've considered doing a grad certificate in either transportation planning or traffic engineering, since my long-long-long-term goal involves transit-oriented development.
My logic is that the MLA will not focus as much on the transportation aspects of the planning and design process, and the certificate would provide additional beneficial knowledge in that area. Additionally, the certificate may help me move up into a better position as I proceed with my 20-year plan (I exaggerate, but not by much) for the MLA. Current employer has good health benefits, $30K a year salary, but no tuition benefits and isn't entirely in line with my long-long-long-term career path.
1) Are graduate certificates useful?
2) Would I be better served by getting the MLA first, then building on that knowledge with the certificate?
3) Any other opinions?
P.S. I was unsure whether to post here or the student thread. Feel free to move if needed.