Hello, I'm new here - from Baltimore. I'm currently contemplating a career change/move and I want to get involved in economic development, planning, or urban policy (or anything in between). I really want to move to Philly and attend Temple University
Temple seems to have two graduate programs, one in Community and Regional Planning and one in Urban Studies. The former is at their Ambler campus in the suburbs, and the latter is downtown. I visited Ambler yesterday and I so wasn't impressed. As an urbanite, I cringe at the notion of either living in the suburbs or commuting to the suburbs to attend classes/do research. And the transit options just aren't that great in my opinion. So I've nixed the possibility of going to Ambler. For people with good grades/GREs, Temple in general seems to be a good choice for those looking for fellowships (vs. Penn, who I've heard is tight)... I think I could get into Penn, but I'm worried about the costs. I have a lot of debt.
However, I have been interested for quite some time at their Urban Studies program and it seems to be right up my ally. Do any of you have experience with their program? Is it any good? I've read some alumn profiles and it seems like students get planning jobs, but I don't know if it hurts my chances. What would I be missing out on from a planning curriculum?
Another cool thing I think is that I might be able to transition from planning to policy rather easily, as I'm interested in both. Since it is a quasi academic degree, I think it would give me slightly more flexibility than a planning degree with little consequence. So if I ever get sick of planning, I can get a research job or work for some organization in a policy capacity.
Tell me if I'm going the wrong way with this...