I'm new to the forum and looking for a little advice. I'm originally from Detroit (talk about failed planning in your face!), but recently moved out to California where I'm planning on pursuing a masters in planning next year.
At the moment I'm busy studying for the GRE (Boo!) and getting app stuff together. I'm trying to figure out how many schools I should apply to. Let me drop a bit about myself, my interests and where I'm considering. Any advice is appreciated!
Me: Undergrad finished in 2005, Doubled in Pol. Sci/sociology, minor in econ, Cum. GPA 3.92, one of my majors and my minor was a 4.0, minus study abroad my courses were all at a large state school in the mit (not MSU or UofM). Was active in volunteer work and worked as a student assistant. No technical planning or design experience, spent the recent years in the D taking care of an ill parent and working as a chef.
I did travel abroad a lot in the past years, and recently completed a steller internship in South Africa @ an NGO focused on sustainable development and energy.
I don't feel too confident that my GRE scores will be great but who knows.
Interests: integrated approaches at sustainable development and resource management, policy more than design.-> prob. going to specialize in enviromental design or policy, although transportation programs are looking rewarding as they seem to really consider a broad range of associated issues.
Post Grad thoughts-prob. stay in cali for a bit though not sure where. Would like to work on an alternative career where I can learn and get experience in new approaches, possibly in the private sector but I'm down with getting some public gov. experience first if necessary. (is this too idealistic or fuzzy?)
Anyways, I'm considering:
Cal Poly SLO
I'm wondering if I should tone it down to 3, either dropping USC cause of the price tag (just went to a grad fair where I asked their rep about funding and was told that applications went up 50% while funding was going down) or UC Berkley cause I'm not sure I represent a competitive candidate and I would like something more hands on (or at least a more practicing faculty)
Any thoughts are appreciated. Sorry for the long post. Thanks!