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Thread: Chances of urban planning school acceptance

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    Chances of urban planning school acceptance

    I'm entering Senior year in high school and have a 3.34 Overall GPA so far. I got a 1610 on my SAT, I have 170+ hours of volunteer service, and am enrolled in several clubs. What do you think are my chances at being accepted at an Urban Planning Undergraduate Program at these colleges?: Cal Poly SLO/ Pomona, USC, UCBerkeley, Arizona State.



    Do you have any more suggestions for schools? I was also looking at minoring at Architecture. I am also deeply interested in that.

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    Your chances:

    Cal Poly Pomona: Great
    Cal Poly SLO: Great
    Arizona State: Good
    USC: Slim
    Cal: Very Slim

    You need to improve your SAT score for USC and Cal.

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    thats what I figured for USC and UCB. At least I'm doing well for the Cal Poly's, they have the best programs in California.

    Are there any people with more info on this? I'd Love going to Cal Poly SLO.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally posted by espinozajr92 View post
    I'm entering Senior year in high school and have a 3.34 Overall GPA so far. I got a 1610 on my SAT, I have 170+ hours of volunteer service, and am enrolled in several clubs. What do you think are my chances at being accepted at an Urban Planning Undergraduate Program at these colleges?: Cal Poly SLO/ Pomona, USC, UCBerkeley, Arizona State.



    Do you have any more suggestions for schools? I was also looking at minoring at Architecture. I am also deeply interested in that.


    How did you get a 1610 on the SAT? The highest score possible is a 1600.

    A girl I know from high school got a 1600 on her SATs..........I believe she ended up at Berkeley.

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    Agreed with posters above, you have good chances of getting into Cal Poly Slo/Pomona and ASU. But for Cal and USC you should have a higher SAT. Jazzman I think they changed the format of the SAT couple years back, 1600 is no longer the highest possible score.

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    UCSD also has an undergraduate planning program. If you really want to get into Berkeley,you may want to look into going to a community college for two years and then transfering. They accept around 33% of transfer applicants. You would also be saving tons of money.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian Raf's avatar
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    updated chances

    Your chances:

    Cal Poly Pomona: Good
    Cal Poly SLO: Slim
    Arizona State: ?
    USC: Slim
    Cal: don't bother

    You need to improve your SAT score (highest score now is 2400 because they added a "critical thinking section" and ditched the SAT II which did that) and GPA score for USC, Cal, and calpoly. Here's is cal poly slo selection criteria for a freshman for the CRP program: http://admissions.calpoly.edu/underg..._LandArch.html

    CRP is an impacted major, thus with a low GPA your chances of getting in are slim. The state budget is also not helping your out because the CSU system has been ordered to reduce freshman applicants acceptance, thus to accept less people, the standards will be higher. If your looking to go to a top tier planning school, UChopeful is right about community college. It might be the better route. The acceptance right for transfers jumps out to around 40-50% for CSU transfers. My run in with CAL as senior has taught me they only take the cream of the crop of undergrads. Even someone with well above average SAT scores and a 3.9, student government and other clubs didn't get in Good Luck.
    Men do dumb $hit... it is what they do to correct the problem that counts.

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    Quote Originally posted by Jazzman View post
    How did you get a 1610 on the SAT? The highest score possible is a 1600.

    A girl I know from high school got a 1600 on her SATs..........I believe she ended up at Berkeley.
    actually, the highest score possible on the SAT is now 2400.

    Quote Originally posted by CPSURaf View post
    CRP is an impacted major, thus with a low GPA your chances of getting in are slim. The state budget is also not helping your out because the CSU system has been ordered to reduce freshman applicants acceptance, thus to accept less people, the standards will be higher. If your looking to go to a top tier planning school, UChopeful is right about community college. It might be the better route. The acceptance right for transfers jumps out to around 40-50% for CSU transfers. My run in with CAL as senior has taught me they only take the cream of the crop of undergrads. Even someone with well above average SAT scores and a 3.9, student government and other clubs didn't get in Good Luck.
    The UC's aren't even my top schools, I was thinking of applying as a backup, but it seems there is no use. Should I even bother applying there?

    I'm really looking at the Cal Poly's a whole lot more, their CRP are actually accredited.

    Also, I have several AP Classes and got 4's on the AP test, would those raise my chances more for Cal Poly SLO?

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    Quote Originally posted by UChopeful2010 View post
    UCSD also has an undergraduate planning program. If you really want to get into Berkeley,you may want to look into going to a community college for two years and then transfering. They accept around 33% of transfer applicants. You would also be saving tons of money.
    is it easier to get into UCSD compared to Berkeley? The UCs are just extra schools im applying to. UCI also has an undergraduate planning program.

    So, out of these 3 UC's, which ones should I bother applying to?:
    UCI
    UCB
    UCSD

    UC Berkeley seemed more appealing out of those 3 because I also want to minor in Architecture, and it's the only one with Architecture. Im deeply interested in that.

  10. #10
    Cyburbian Raf's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by espinozajr92;502130
    I'm really looking at the Cal Poly's a whole lot more, their CRP are actually accredited.[QUOTE

    Also, I have several AP Classes and got 4's on the AP test, would those raise my chances more for Cal Poly SLO?
    Like I said, GPA/Test scores and having great grades in advance math/science classes are the ticket. Your low GPA is your downfall. Try applying, but don't get your heart set on going. As a freshman, many of my classmates where top tiers of their schools, and most of us had GPAs above 3.6. The CRP undergrad is tops around the west imo. Great design and policy school and the education is the equivalent of a decent MS/MA.

    Based on what you have laid out, here are some options with high chances to get in:

    Cal State Northridge (accredited)
    San Jose State
    UCSB
    Cal Poly Ponoma (accredited)
    UC Davis (new community regional development program)

    Again, if you have your heart set on poly or cal take a hard look at a local jc. Sounds lame, but your chances increase of getting in 2 years from now and is way cheaper.
    Men do dumb $hit... it is what they do to correct the problem that counts.

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    Quote Originally posted by espinozajr92 View post
    is it easier to get into UCSD compared to Berkeley? The UCs are just extra schools im applying to. UCI also has an undergraduate planning program.

    So, out of these 3 UC's, which ones should I bother applying to?:
    UCI
    UCB
    UCSD

    UC Berkeley seemed more appealing out of those 3 because I also want to minor in Architecture, and it's the only one with Architecture. Im deeply interested in that.
    Out of the three in terms of most competitive to least i'd say
    1) UC Berkley
    2. UCSD
    3. UCI

    However, UCSD is regarded as more of a science/biology school, so entering as an Urban Planning undergraduate may help you a bit. But again UCSD is also considered one of the more competitive UC's (not quite on the level of Cal/UCLA i'd say a level under, but more competitive than most other UC's)

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    well, at least i have good chances for cal poly pomona..it's only 10 mins. away from home. itd be great to enter there too.

    i've been doing more research. what are my chances for:
    Iowa State
    University of Virginia
    Univ. of IL at Urbana-Champaign

    You are all being extremely helpful, thanks so much.

    also, if go to a JC, I stay there 2 years and then I transfer to another college to finish up 2 more years? Is that how it would work?

  13. #13
    Cyburbian dvdneal's avatar
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    As an ASU grad I hate to say it but it's easy to get in. I would warn against the architecture minor - it's a great program, but you need so many credits in architecture classes that don't blend well with planning if you want a degree in 4 years. You may have to take an extra year to get it done.

    Just remember the line from the Simpsons
    Awww...Heaven's easier to get into than Arizona State.

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    Quote Originally posted by dvdneal View post
    As an ASU grad I hate to say it but it's easy to get in. I would warn against the architecture minor - it's a great program, but you need so many credits in architecture classes that don't blend well with planning if you want a degree in 4 years. You may have to take an extra year to get it done.

    Just remember the line from the Simpsons
    Awww...Heaven's easier to get into than Arizona State.
    what did you major in?
    yeah, i figured architecture would add more. but im passionate about architecture, it was my first major choice until just a couple of months ago when i switched to urban planning

  15. #15
    Quote Originally posted by espinozajr92 View post
    well, at least i have good chances for cal poly pomona..it's only 10 mins. away from home. itd be great to enter there too.

    i've been doing more research. what are my chances for:
    Iowa State
    University of Virginia
    Univ. of IL at Urbana-Champaign

    You are all being extremely helpful, thanks so much.

    also, if go to a JC, I stay there 2 years and then I transfer to another college to finish up 2 more years? Is that how it would work?
    Iowa State - Good Chance
    University of Virginia - No
    Illinois at Urbana-Champaign - Possible

    And yes, that is how the junior/community college process generally works.

  16. #16
    Cyburbian dvdneal's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by espinozajr92 View post
    what did you major in?
    yeah, i figured architecture would add more. but im passionate about architecture, it was my first major choice until just a couple of months ago when i switched to urban planning
    I started with architecture (didn't make it past the 2nd year) and switched to urban planning (turns out I like it more). I have my BS in planning. I would check to see if their recent move from the college of design to geography changed anything as far as accredidation. I don't think the program changed, but it's been a couple years.

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    Cyburbian Raf's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by espinozajr92 View post

    also, if go to a JC, I stay there 2 years and then I transfer to another college to finish up 2 more years? Is that how it would work?
    Yup. Just follow this website. Enter the jc you will attend, and the school you want to transfer to and see what classes transfer over, etc.

    http://www.assist.org/web-assist/welcome.html
    Men do dumb $hit... it is what they do to correct the problem that counts.

  18. #18
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    Berkeley

    Having gone to Berkeley for my unergrad I can tell you first hand that while there were quite a few intelligent people in my classes, there were also equally as many stupid people. Not to say you are stupid by any means, just simply trying to make the point that you never know what might happen during the admissions process. So apply everywhere and anywhere and hope for the best, that's all you can do.

    Good luck.

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    Cal Poly SLO/ Pomona, USC, UCBerkeley, Arizona State.

    SLO: no. you need a 3.8
    Pomona: no, you need a 3.5
    USC: 4.0 no
    Berkley: 4.0 no
    Arizona state: yes
    USC: def no
    UCLA: no

  20. #20
    If you go to JC, you will be basically getting all your GE out of the way so that when you transfer to a planning program you will not have to worry about math, stats, liberal arts, sciences, etc.. You may still have support classes to knock out, and of course your electives. But in California you will be getting your IGETC, which certifies that you have all your lower division GE and are ready to transfer to a UC or CSU.

    This is what I did: Went to a CA community college in Northern CA, got my IGETC certification, and got an AA in Liberal Arts, since it only required a couple more units or something. In the meantime I applied to Cal Poly SLO, UC Davis, UC Berkeley, and UC Santa Barbara. After receiving my acceptances, I chose Cal Poly SLO and did the BSCRP program, which in hindsight was probably the best choice, but who knows. It was definitely a better choice than UC Davis or UCSB, based on input I've got from others I know how did their undergrads at those places in the community development program (Davis) and the Bren School for environmental studies (UCSB). SLO is also a great place to live. After my BSCRP I went to work for a private planning firm in town, and knocked out my MPP also at Poly. I am now moving to Washington DC to do planning for the federal government. A long way from my blue-collar, sleepy hometown in an obscure part of northern CA.

    I highly, highly recommend doing 2 years at community college first. The advantages are overwhelming: 1) Cheap. I didn't pay a dime, and in fact was effectively paid to go to school with federal and state aid. Even if I had to pay out of pocket, fees minimal; 2) I could figure out what I wanted to do first, and where I might like to go; 3) I ended up being more competitive of an applicant since I had that time to boost my GPA with easier GE classes; in addition, most colleges favor transfer applicants, so there's no downside to this (see here for proof: http://www.ess.calpoly.edu/_admiss/P..._090409pdf.pdf); 4) I didn't have to make any big decisions about moving somewhere else in the state, which would also have been way more expensive; 5) It was a nice introduction to college in a smaller, less competitive academic environment. For me, who had been out of school for 6 years prior out in the workforce, this was nice. I never took the SAT in high school and never intended to go to college in the first place.

    I really can't see many advantages in going to a university for the full 4 years. You'll certainly probably have access to more social aspects of a university, but will also probably have harder classes and pay at least 10-20 times as much in tuition, not counting living expenses if you have to move. You'll have to declare your major as a freshman if you go to Cal Poly SLO, so that is another big reason to transfer in, since you should not trust yourself to know if you will be a planner yet. I feel that most kids should just go to college first, learn about all sorts of stuff, be exposed to things, and then figure it out gradually. Doing 2 years at JC would accommodate that.

    EDIT: I'd just like to add that I don't think you should alter your choices of where to apply based on what you think your chances are according to your SAT or GPA. There are more criteria used than grades. You should just figure out where you want to go regardless of how hard you think it is to get in and then make the best case for yourself while applying. Good luck!
    Last edited by chocolatechip; 09 Jun 2010 at 3:45 PM.

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    Quote Originally posted by chocolatechip View post
    If you go to JC, you will be basically getting all your GE out of the way so that when you transfer to a planning program you will not have to worry about math, stats, liberal arts, sciences, etc.. You may still have support classes to knock out, and of course your electives. But in California you will be getting your IGETC, which certifies that you have all your lower division GE and are ready to transfer to a UC or CSU.

    This is what I did: Went to a CA community college in Northern CA, got my IGETC certification, and got an AA in Liberal Arts, since it only required a couple more units or something. In the meantime I applied to Cal Poly SLO, UC Davis, UC Berkeley, and UC Santa Barbara. After receiving my acceptances, I chose Cal Poly SLO and did the BSCRP program, which in hindsight was probably the best choice, but who knows. It was definitely a better choice than UC Davis or UCSB, based on input I've got from others I know how did their undergrads at those places in the community development program (Davis) and the Bren School for environmental studies (UCSB). SLO is also a great place to live. After my BSCRP I went to work for a private planning firm in town, and knocked out my MPP also at Poly. I am now moving to Washington DC to do planning for the federal government. A long way from my blue-collar, sleepy hometown in an obscure part of northern CA.

    I highly, highly recommend doing 2 years at community college first. The advantages are overwhelming: 1) Cheap. I didn't pay a dime, and in fact was effectively paid to go to school with federal and state aid. Even if I had to pay out of pocket, fees minimal; 2) I could figure out what I wanted to do first, and where I might like to go; 3) I ended up being more competitive of an applicant since I had that time to boost my GPA with easier GE classes; in addition, most colleges favor transfer applicants, so there's no downside to this (see here for proof: http://www.ess.calpoly.edu/_admiss/P..._090409pdf.pdf); 4) I didn't have to make any big decisions about moving somewhere else in the state, which would also have been way more expensive; 5) It was a nice introduction to college in a smaller, less competitive academic environment. For me, who had been out of school for 6 years prior out in the workforce, this was nice. I never took the SAT in high school and never intended to go to college in the first place.

    I really can't see many advantages in going to a university for the full 4 years. You'll certainly probably have access to more social aspects of a university, but will also probably have harder classes and pay at least 10-20 times as much in tuition, not counting living expenses if you have to move. You'll have to declare your major as a freshman if you go to Cal Poly SLO, so that is another big reason to transfer in, since you should not trust yourself to know if you will be a planner yet. I feel that most kids should just go to college first, learn about all sorts of stuff, be exposed to things, and then figure it out gradually. Doing 2 years at JC would accommodate that.

    EDIT: I'd just like to add that I don't think you should alter your choices of where to apply based on what you think your chances are according to your SAT or GPA. There are more criteria used than grades. You should just figure out where you want to go regardless of how hard you think it is to get in and then make the best case for yourself while applying. Good luck!
    I'd love to know your stats for getting ha ha. I'm in the shoes you were in.

  22. #22
    Quote Originally posted by urban19 View post
    I'd love to know your stats for getting ha ha. I'm in the shoes you were in.
    Well, they were pretty good. I had a 3.968 GPA from two years of GE. I also had some support classes that ate into my BSCRP, such as statistics, precalc, geology, drafting, etc.

    When I got to Cal Poly, there were several other transfers I started with, and I'm pretty damn sure they didn't have near as high of a GPA as I did. So I wouldn't sweat it too much. Like I explained above, the average admitted GPA for transfers is a good deal lower than for freshmen.

  23. #23
    Cyburbian HomerJ's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by espinozajr92 View post
    well, at least i have good chances for cal poly pomona..it's only 10 mins. away from home. itd be great to enter there too.

    i've been doing more research. what are my chances for:
    Iowa State
    University of Virginia
    Univ. of IL at Urbana-Champaign

    You are all being extremely helpful, thanks so much.

    also, if go to a JC, I stay there 2 years and then I transfer to another college to finish up 2 more years? Is that how it would work?
    I was accepted into UIUC's architecture program with a very low GPA and very high ACT and SAT scores. I still think that the largest factor for getting in was the letters of recommendation and the essays I wrote. But then again, few of us ever actually get to see what takes place during the selection process. If you think you have even a slim chance and it's something you really want to do, I say go for it.

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    Quote Originally posted by chocolatechip View post
    Well, they were pretty good. I had a 3.968 GPA from two years of GE. I also had some support classes that ate into my BSCRP, such as statistics, precalc, geology, drafting, etc.

    When I got to Cal Poly, there were several other transfers I started with, and I'm pretty damn sure they didn't have near as high of a GPA as I did. So I wouldn't sweat it too much. Like I explained above, the average admitted GPA for transfers is a good deal lower than for freshmen.
    Yikes,that is high. 2010's average GPA for the architecture college is a 3.28. Except i haven't taken any support classes-Chem, Architecture, Geology, Statistics

    I did point down that I had some club experience related to my major. 6-10 hrs. Also I went to a local high school, so I'm supposed to get points for that.

    I really hope I don't have to take the hardship petition route. It takes so long to find out if you get in.

    For my core classes, I got a C in english, A in Critical Thinking, B in Speech, and C in math ideas and I'm taking college algebra because they want me to take that math class.

    Also, for Fall 2010 the amount of people from the central coast was higher than usual. 9.3%. LA and SF having the second highest amount of students.

    http://admissions.calpoly.edu/prospe...studentprofile

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    BTW, I got into Cal Poly SLO! Not sure it will happen this semester ha ha. I am seeing if they will accept my math course from CSU Northridge. Otherwise I'd have to take the math class at Hancock College over Summer.

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