Hello all. This is my first post on the forum. After reading several threads in the career section, the time has come for me to ask some *general* questions.
To introduce where I'm coming from, I graduated a few years ago with a BS of Urban Planning, had an unpaid internship while I did my final two semesters and have been employed as a Planner since I graduated. I live in a rural area - well actually it's a micropolitan area in Eastern Iowa - and the average home price here is around $80,000. We did a wage compensation study three years ago and the starting wage for the Planners were bumped to around $50,000/year. My department has one boss, one planner, a few rental inspectors, and some building inspectors. We also have two secretaries.
First, why does everything make it seem like you NEED a Master's to get anywhere in Planning? From reading the Planning.org site and this site it seems like you can only get a good job with a Master's. I simply don't believe that.
Secondly, what are these "portfolios" some people have for planning? I know LA and Arch has portfolios but never once in my planning undergrad did we have or make reference to a portfolio.