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Thread: Advice for a recent graduate

  1. #1
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    Advice for a recent graduate

    Hello ,
    I recently graduated with a B.A. in Geography concentration in Urban Planning. I also have a GIS Certificate and also have a two year technical degree in civil engineering. Question is I did not get the chance to have an internship and while my GPA is over a 2.0 its a few points shy of a 3.0. will this hurt the job hunt? apologies if this is a re post just my head is full of woes and I would appreciate some sort of guidance anything that can help let it out.

  2. #2
    Cyburbian
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    A planning degree/planning-related degree is never enough for an entry-level job. Employers expect related experience. You have a non-planning bachelors, a mediocre GPA, and no internships. Why didn't you have the chance for an internship? I would seriously start looking into an MUP, work your tail off, earn a good internship (or several internships) build up a portfolio of class and professional work, and start building up your network now. When you finish grad school in 2-3 years you should be in a better position to find entry-level planning work.

    Hope this helps-
    "This is great, honey. What's the crunchy stuff?"
    "M&Ms. I ran out of paprika."

    Family Guy

  3. #3
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    the internship opportunity went to another student ( was only one opening) but I have begun to look again for an internship in the surrounding counties but sadly grad school is not an option due to lack of funds. My GPA is in a sorry state due to my early years in college but I finished strong with a 2.8-3.0 or better in the final 2 years. Thank you for the advice it sad that the civil degree appears to be worthless

  4. #4
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    correction "its"

  5. #5
    Cyburbian beach_bum's avatar
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    In this job market, a master's is your best option considering your academic background, you said you dont have funds, but there are academic scholarships and ways to get your masters without too much out of pocket. Also consider an in-state public school for your master's as that may be cheaper.

    If you can't go the master's option you might consider volunteering for an internship or working for a local non-profit to get some valuable experience for your resume. You need experience to get a job in this competitive market, especially competing against fresh-out of school grads with master's degrees in urban planning. Best of Luck.
    "Never invest in any idea you can't illustrate with a crayon." ~Peter Lynch

  6. #6
    Cyburbian
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    Another way to beef up your portfolio is to make up your own projects. Over the years, I took several completed college and professional projects and expanded them beyond the original work. Create a site plan, write a model zoning ordinance, find a community with an antiquated comp plan and re-write it, anything to show the skills you have learned.

    Applying for the (1) only (2) planning (3) internship is too competitive. Think outside of the box. Beach mentioned volunteering. You might find a job as a census worker, GIS tech, even forestry. There are plenty of land development/planning-related areas to consider. My first internship was my sophomore year working as a GIS technician for the state geological survey where I analyzed geological drill sites using Rockware GIS. It wasn't necessarily planning, but it led to offers for very competitive planning internships the following year.
    "This is great, honey. What's the crunchy stuff?"
    "M&Ms. I ran out of paprika."

    Family Guy

  7. #7
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    thank you for your advice, it once again proves very helpful. I think I will enter the internship route (hands on experience has always been better for me) thanks again and hopefully I will obtain the skills needed for a successful career in planning

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