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Thread: Switching from architecture to planning

  1. #1
    Cyburbian cellophane's avatar
    Jan 2009
    louisville, ky

    Switching from architecture to planning

    Good afternoon -

    I am currently working as an architect in Louisville, KY and am generally unhappy with what the job and from I've seen career really are compared to the rosy art and design of school. In school I took several urban studios and always walked away with a much greater sense of accomplishment and general happiness than studio's that focused on a building. Given my general malaise with architecture I am (again) looking into planning / urban studies / urban design but am at a general loss as how to get into the field, other than go through job sites and submit my resume and hope it gets noticed.

    I have my B.Arch and am pretty close to being able to complete my registration to get accredited with AIA but like I mentioned earlier - I don't really care for the specifics of building design (or the developers that change their mind on what they want every 10 minutes) - at this point AIA registration would be more for the sake of completing it than anything else (assuming I don't stick with architecture.) I have done some site planning work at my current job (mostly retail outlots) and did a good amount in school but really don't have 'planning' experience per se.

    Is it worth going back to school and getting a M.UP or M.Arch with a focus on planning or just dive in headfirst into the field? UofL and UK both have a masters - UofL is a M.UP and UK is an M.Arch in Urban Planning or something along those lines.

    What are good jobs to look for when getting into planning? I don't know the specific job titles, and they seem to change depending on where you are looking anyways. Ive seen Planner I / II, City Planner, Urban Planner among others but not knowing the intricacies of the field its hard to know what to shoot for.


  2. #2
    Cyburbian Raf's avatar
    Feb 2007
    Playing at a movie theater near you
    The architects in my firm feel your pain dude. Your could go the master's route and just get MUP the emphasizes policies, etc more so than the design part since you got that down, but have you thought about just sending your resume out to a private firms that specialize in design? My firm does design planning work and in good times would love to have seen a resume from an architect who wants to become a planner. Hell, even my boss is an architect by trade, got his masters and is now the president of the company. You could always work while getting your master's degree as well. IF you very passionate about design, i would stick with the private sector.
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