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Thread: Canadian planners working in the US?

  1. #1
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    Canadian planners working in the US?

    i was hoping someone might have some insight or advice for me...i am a recent graduate of a canadian planning school (masters) and am wondering about working in the states. is it worth applying to some of the entry level positions advertized here and on the american planning association website? is it very likely that a recent canadian planning grad would be considered and then be sponsored to go there? are there any regions in particular that face a planner shortage? any insight would be greatly appreciated! thanks!

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Plus Veloise's avatar
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    Where in Ontario?

    At the city of Detroit, one of my former colleagues was a Cdn native. Lived in Windsor, took the tunnel bus, walked a couple blocks to the office. She lived in an apartment right across from Belle Isle (appropriately named) and she was doing quite well for herself. (I left in '03 and have not had further contact with the department, other than noticing that several others left, and then went far away.)

    If memory serves she had two bank accounts. (You probably know that in the US we are generally ignorant of exchange and pass Cdn coins at par, which can be profitable at parking meters. On my ventures south, I've been impressed by every common clerk instantly converting $US to $Cdn and vice versa.)

    Bottom line: it can be done. PM me if you want to contact her.

  3. #3
    maudit anglais
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    About 10 years ago when I graduated a good number of my classmates ended up working in the U.S.A. because there were no jobs up here. I had a couple of interviews myself but nothing came of it.

    It is definitely possible, and I think there are one or two people on the boards here who have taken that route.

    My main questions for you would be: Why are you looking for work in the states right now? Is it because you can't jobs in Canada right now, or do you have other reasons?

    The job market for planners in Canada is still quite strong, particularly in Ontario and western Canada. With the current economic situation in the states and the increased value of our dollar, I'm not sure looking for work down there right now would be a great choice (but I am conservative minded in that regard).

  4. #4
    Cyburbian
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    I graduated in Dec of 2003 from UW and was working in the US in Jan of 2004 got the job offer before I finished my last exam. Its a fairly easy process to obtain permission to work in the US for Canadian planners, the hardest part will be obtaining a job. I suggest looking to the south, lots of planning jobs and no winter!

  5. #5
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    thanks everyone. very helpful. i've just started looking and applying but on the surface it just doesn't seem like there's all that much in canada. i guess i'm also a little particular about where i want to live as well. not so keen on ontario or alberta - two places there do seem to be a lot of positions open. i'm from halifax but it doesn't seem like there's a lot in the maritmes either and not sure i want to be there anyway. so, this is great to know that it's possible and from a canadian working as a planner in the states. how did you find your job anyway? through one of the various websites? anyways...thanks so much and any other suggestions that you might have would be much appreciated

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    Cyburbian
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  7. #7
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    I'm posting in this thread after quite some time now but I was reading over JE_N's question and I was actually wondering the same thing. Are there Canadians on this board who were successful in getting Planning positions in the US? If yes, how did you apply, online? I have recently finished up my masters in Planning and was thinking of moving south of the border.

  8. #8
    Cyburbian Plus dvdneal's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by seymour44 View post
    I graduated in Dec of 2003 from UW and was working in the US in Jan of 2004 got the job offer before I finished my last exam. Its a fairly easy process to obtain permission to work in the US for Canadian planners, the hardest part will be obtaining a job. I suggest looking to the south, lots of planning jobs and no winter!
    This sounds like the best advice to me. I don't have any experience with Canadians, but I did work with a couple Indians who had work visas or green cards. I suppose you have to get something like that, but I don't think American companies have a problem with you foreigners up north. The working in the south part is good advice too, that seems to be where most of the jobs are at.
    I don't pretend to understand Brannigan's Law. I merely enforce it.

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    It may be easier to get hired at a private US company that does work in Canada. It might also help if you have a specialty and some experience. Aside from that, the biggest obstacle may be that they employer does not know what is necessary for you to work in the US. This is going to keep some from considering you, but not all. So if there is a position in the US that interests you, go for it.
    Anyone want to adopt a dog?

  10. #10
    Cyburbian DetroitPlanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by screamorange View post
    I'm posting in this thread after quite some time now but I was reading over JE_N's question and I was actually wondering the same thing. Are there Canadians on this board who were successful in getting Planning positions in the US? If yes, how did you apply, online? I have recently finished up my masters in Planning and was thinking of moving south of the border.
    If you come work for us you can stay in Canada and take the bus to work every day! In order to live there I need to first know how you feel about Chrysler products and tomatoes. Much less hassle for you in terms of paperwork, though I bet filing taxes is a pain!

    Oh and you would be travelling N to get to the office, not South.

    BTW do you have a bullet proof vest?

    We have hired Canadians in the past through our relationship with the University of Windsor. Everyone I have worked with that were Canadians were hard workers and fit in very well. You will like it here. Downtown Detroit has several Tim Horton's and most of the streets have french names so you will feel at home.
    We hope for better things; it will arise from the ashes - Fr Gabriel Richard 1805

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