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Thread: Another chances thread

  1. #1

    Another chances thread

    I only recently began thinking about urban planning, so I'm unsure as to how competitive I am for top programs.
    Here are my stats:

    Currently a third year undergrad at top 25 university, geology and environmental science
    3.51 GPA
    GRE: 720 V, 740 Q
    No planning experience, only a couple of internships both of which focused on corporate social responsibility
    Will be beginning a senior thesis soon with a highly respected professor in the field

    I think my essays and recs will be very good. Do you think it's worth shooting for programs like Cornell, Penn, and Columbia?
    I normally don't make chances threads but I'm rather clueless on this. Thanks for the help.

  2. #2
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Arcata, CA
    Posts
    67
    Quote Originally posted by polydentate View post
    I only recently began thinking about urban planning, so I'm unsure as to how competitive I am for top programs.
    Here are my stats:

    Currently a third year undergrad at top 25 university, geology and environmental science
    3.51 GPA
    GRE: 720 V, 740 Q
    No planning experience, only a couple of internships both of which focused on corporate social responsibility
    Will be beginning a senior thesis soon with a highly respected professor in the field

    I think my essays and recs will be very good. Do you think it's worth shooting for programs like Cornell, Penn, and Columbia?
    I normally don't make chances threads but I'm rather clueless on this. Thanks for the help.
    Hi Polydentate,

    I think you definitely should apply to those programs if they fit your interests, but also apply to "safety" schools if you will. Don't shortchange yourself. These programs look at the overall package and if you can write one heck of a statement then theres no reason why they wouldn't consider you. Show them you understand planning and have an idea of what you want to study. Oh, and great letters of rec help too. Your stats are exceptional so don't worry too much about that.

    If you need advice on applying, you may want to check Ann Forsyth's entries on the matter:
    http://www.planetizen.com/blog/10386

    good luck!

  3. #3
    Member
    Registered
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Not in your backyard...
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    Your qualifications are great. Good experience that should complement urban planning.

    Should you apply to those schools? Sure. Looking at pure statistics I'd say you're fine. Unfortunately, grad school admissions are highly subjective.

    Talk to current and former students of the program (department should be able to get you in contact) and for the love of all things planning, make a visit and meet with students and faculty. Let them get to know you outside of your application package, put a face to a name, and see how your personality and interests would complement the department.

    Not much else to recommend beyond that. It's worth shooting for any program you'd like so go for it. No one will be able to give you an affirmative answer given the subjectivity so I would fathom a guess and say that even individuals who aren't as credentialed as you would have a shot at such top-notch programs.

    Good luck.

  4. #4
    Thanks, Okkoflo and plannerista.
    Will coming straight out of undergrad hurt me in any way? The majority of people seem to have had at least two years worth of real world experience.

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