I'm considering a PhD in planning or environmental policy. I'm not sure how selective the planning programs are, but here are my stats:
MS in Planning, Florida State University, 3.51 GPA
BA, Florida State University, 3.46 GPA
Internships with Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and the State of Florida Department of Community Affairs
Currently working with a Land Conservancy in Ohio.
Would I be competitive for the planning programs at:
Illinois - Urbana/Champaign
Thanks for any guidance given!
So I've added the University of Louisville and the University of New Orleans to my list of graduate schools... Does any one have any experience with these institutions or cities?
I don't hear a whole lot about them on the message boards (probably a reason for that?).
I've heard Louisville is a fun city as far as night life is concerned, but other than that nothing.
And I'm sure New Orleans has plenty to teach a student of city planning, being that it is rebuilding more than most.
First time poster here. Hello all.
I graduated this fall from Rutgers University with a BA in Economics and Political Science. I tested the job market and have come up with zilch. Now I'm looking into attending Graduate School for Urban Planning and Policy Development. My GPA is 2.95 and I'm taking the GREs in late December.
I'm hoping to attend a school in the Northeast and my list of schools include: Columbia, NYU, Rutgers, Maryland and Hunter College (safety school).
I know it's a long climb from where I am (I don't even have recommendations or any field experience), but does anyone have any advice as to how well I need to do in the GREs to compensate for a so-so GPA?
How much weight a GRE is given varies by school. Some schools look at it as just a way to weed out candidates, like if you don't have over a 1000 or 1100, they won't accept you. Then others look at it just to determine who gets financial aid.
This won't be a helpful answer but with the GRE, just do the best you can. Just make sure it's above the school's recommended score.
If I were in your shoes, I'd focus heavily on the letter of intent since that will likely be the thing you can do that will make up for any low scores you may have.
University of New Orleans I don't know much about despite one of my professors working there before coming to my school. I just know he loved being in New Orleans.
Undergraduate GPA: 3.13, Washington and Lee University, BS Mathematics
GRE: Q-740, V-610, A-5.5
Work Experience: 4 years in Real Estate Finance/Investment
Certifications: CCIM, CFA Level 3 Candidate
Any thoughts on my chances? I feel like my low undergrad GPA could hurt.
I appreciate the feedback! Planning can seem like an obscure topic to many and the source for support and information can be scarce. This is the best place I have received information about planning. Thanks to all.
GRE 1100 -- it's pathetic, I know.
My list of schools has also changed:
UNC (MCRP + MPH)
Florida State (MUP + MPH)
Univ. of Michigan (MSP + MPH)
Univ. of Washington
North Carolina State Univ. (MPA)
George Washington (MA Geography)
Is anyone else considering alternative programs such as MPA or Geography?
'09 graduate from Colgate University, A.B. in Art History 3.79 cumulative GPA
680 V 760 M (waiting to hear on writing)
I'm really interested in African urbanism (spent some time volunteering in Tanzania and wrote my thesis about Nigerian modern architecture) so I've had a bit of a hard time finding strong international programs with professors who specialize in Africa.
I recently worked on the High Speed Rail project, doing CRM/Historic Preservation, but that's really the only planning-related experience I have.
I'm applying to the following:
University of British Columbia
I was wondering if anyone could comment on how schools weigh experience versus academics?
Just got mt GRE scores back and ended up with a 1260, a bit below what I was hoping for. I have a pretty solid 3.7 GPA from a top school, but no related planning experience. What do my chances look like for UMich, USC and UCLA? Thanks
Hello to all,
In 2nd year of masters program right now, applying for PHD.
GRE: V- 660, M-770, W-5.5.
Interested in international development in urban areas, basic service provision (particularly water and sanitation), metropolitan governance.
- North Carolina, Chapel Hill
- Cornell (maybe)
- MIT (maybe)
Generally, the less experience you have the more emphasis on grades. We have several people straight out of undergrad and they're grades were stellar from top schools. I went to a good, but not top of the top-tier universities, but worked for several years before applying.
Also worth noting that my experience was related to planning. If you haven't done planning work but can explain how what you've done is relevant and will prepare you that's OK.
Going for a Master's degree in Urban Planning, hoping to specialize in something international: I want to look for international career opportunities because of the current and future state of the job market in this field in the US, but might just settle for the cheapest education/best financial aid package, given how tough it is to find employment post-grad right now. Also as a Chinese-American, I am very interested in doing something related to urban planning in China, whether it be research or a future career path. Only heard about planning as a potential career about a year ago and was "hooked," but I'm lacking a bit in actual experience, and I'm a little worried about that affecting my admission chances.
3.4 GPA B.A. Economics, minor in Statistics (UMich)
GRE: 780 Verbal 800 Math 5.5 Writing
Experience: Internship this past summer for a county economic development office
Just sent out the apps for the first 4 this week. Really nervous about my chances at all of these schools (both admissions and financial aid possibilities) because of the competitive nature of admissions.
Has anybody here been through the MRED program at Arizona State U? I just applied and am just waiting for my Letters of Rec and transcript to go through. I've got 8+ years of experience in economic development plus two internships, one in ED and one in housing programs doing grants work so petitioned to waive the GRE requirement (which it said you can do if you have 5+ years of experience in a related field). I'm thinking I have a good chance to get in but not sure.
For anybody who's been through the program, how was your experience?
"When life gives you lemons, just say 'No thanks'." - Henry Rollins
I've been staying away from this forum because I realized it kind of fuels my anxiety, haha. But I need some advice! I retook the GRE and am really happy with the new score, 700 V / 800 Q / 5.0 W. Does anyone know how schools look at multiple GRE scores? The first time I took it, about 2.5 years ago, I wasn’t ready to go back to school and didn’t study very much, which was dumb.
2nd question – does anyone know about UT-Austin in terms of how design-centric it is? I know it’s in the School of Architecture, but I was always under the impression that the program does not have a heavy focus on urban design/physical planning, unless you actively pursue that route. However, I met a PSU MURP student last weekend who told me he chose PSU over UT because UT was too design-heavy. I mean, we’re talking about architecture versus public policy schools here, so there’s that difference… but if anyone has any insight into UT’s program I would really appreciate it. Thanks!
P.S. Hope everyone is holding up well, I’m super excited, and nervous, but mostly excited.
I'm from Iran, Tehran, and i've studied B.A. Urban and Regional planning in Tehran university.
work experience: Member of the Urban Studies team:Identifying the structure and identity of Tehran neighborhoods,Manistar Parse consulting engineers co.(for a year).
Assistant planneresignating land use for urban lots,Rahpoo Sakht Sharestan consulting engineers co.(for 6 months)
State Uni of Albany
Cal Poly Pomona
San luis obispo
Uni of Florida
Florida Atlantic Uni
do you think i have any chance in getting admission???
My dad's from Mashad, so nice to see you on the thread. Judging by your GPA and GRE, i'd say UCLA and Cornell could be tough to get into, but you should stand a solid chance at the other schools.
Finished and submitted my applications for Berkeley and USC. Main lesson learned from these apps is that writing an SoP is not fun.
Planning on submitting the apps for UCLA, UCI, and Cal Poly SLO in January.
Because of family constraints (tossing a spouse's good job to the wind doesn't make a lot of sense in this economy) I'll be trying to stick in the Seattle region, applying to UW. I am submitting apps for the Interdisciplinary PhD in Urban Design and Planning as well as the PhD in Built Environment (Sustainable Systems specialization).
I have a BS in Biol, MURP and 12+ years experience in environmental planning. Looking to apply my experience in impact assessment to advancing the growing practice of Health Impact Assessment. Retook the GRE this year, last took that in 95 or so before my MURP. I spent a couple months preparing (using Barron's prep and online resources... probably 7 hours per week) and the test went pretty well: 730 V, 780 Q, 5.0 AW.
Will only be heading back to school if there will be full funding. Will let you know how things pan out.
Last edited by childersja; 26 Dec 2010 at 11:32 PM. Reason: typo