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Thread: East Carolina B.S. in urban and regional planning

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    East Carolina B.S. in urban and regional planning

    Hi,

    I am a high school junior who is interested in going into historic preservation and/or urban and community planning. I ultimately see myself working as a historic preservationist for a town/state or Main Street organization, working in an arch firm as a historic preservationist, or in a planning job with an emphasis on historic preservation. I am looking at colleges to apply to and came across East Carolina. They have two majors, one in Public History and another in Urban and Regional planning. I was wondering if any of you have any familiarity with this school or these programs. I most likely will go onto obtain my masters, but I thought these programs as an undergraduate looked great and the courses looked really interesting. Thanks for your help!

  2. #2
    Cyburbian
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    Despite living in SC, I'm pretty unfamiliar with Eastern Carolina. If you're interested in Historic Preservation, I'd look into College of Charleston though. They have a Historic Preservation and Community Planning program. I know at the very least, their historic planning program is pretty good plus you're right in historic Charleston.

  3. #3
    Cyburbian mike gurnee's avatar
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    I hired three East Carolina grads. Found them to be good, knowledgable people.

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    Tthanks for you replies. That is good news about the graduates. I actually have looked at C of C, but I am looking forward to many things to making up my undergraduate experience: a bigger school, a lot of school spirit, college football, things like that. Also, I feel that I may have a better chance at earning merit money/scholarships at ECU than CofC. We'll see.....Any more information out there? Keep it coming!

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    Cyburbian beach_bum's avatar
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    I have worked with several ECU grads and yes, a good bachelors-level program with all the school spirit, large college feel to go along with it.
    "Never invest in any idea you can't illustrate with a crayon." ~Peter Lynch

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    Cyburbian Brocktoon's avatar
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    East Carolina is a great party school and is affectionately referred to as Easy-U which is a reflection on its academic rigor and morally casual student body. Of course I went to Arizona State so I do not have much room to talk. Seriously, I have known many ECU grads (although none were planners) and they were all great people who had a great time in college both on the academic side and the personal side.

    Regardless of where you go the best thing to do is volunteer and intern. If you are interested in working for a Main Street Program find one near you and talk with the director. If it is close enough offer to volunteer. They are always in need of extra help. Also, seek out internships in the field. You learn far more working in the field than you will in a classroom.

    There are plenty of threads talking about internships that you might find helpful. Best of luck and I am quite impressed that you have choosen such an important field. The joke around most historic presevation conferences are the attendees are almost as old as the buildings they are trying to save.
    "If you don't like change, you're going to like irrelevance even less" General Eric Shinseki

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    Brocktoon, Thanks for the advice about the internship/volunteering. After I read your post, I contacted a local historical site and I am going to be volunteering there this summer! I actually get to help plan one of the upcoming exhibits!

    I was aware of the reputation of ECU, but I feel that sometimes schools get reputations that carry with them even after the reason for the reputation changes. VCU, a school near me, is like that. It used to be a school that was looked down upon by everyone and if you had a pulse you could be admitted. They are doing some great things there and many of the really smart kids in my school are taking the money (or saving money) and going there if they are planning on going to grad school.

    I am going to visit ECU this summer and get a feel for the campus and maybe talk to some of the professors if they are there. Thanks again everyone!

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    Cyburbian Brocktoon's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by country4me View post
    Brocktoon, Thanks for the advice about the internship/volunteering. After I read your post, I contacted a local historical site and I am going to be volunteering there this summer! I actually get to help plan one of the upcoming exhibits!

    I was aware of the reputation of ECU, but I feel that sometimes schools get reputations that carry with them even after the reason for the reputation changes. VCU, a school near me, is like that. It used to be a school that was looked down upon by everyone and if you had a pulse you could be admitted. They are doing some great things there and many of the really smart kids in my school are taking the money (or saving money) and going there if they are planning on going to grad school.

    I am going to visit ECU this summer and get a feel for the campus and maybe talk to some of the professors if they are there. Thanks again everyone!
    Happy I could help! Best of luck and college is what you make of it. The important thing is finding the right college for you. Try to stay active on the boards. I know there are a few Carolina folks that post. If you want extra points then become an Atlanta Braves fan.
    "If you don't like change, you're going to like irrelevance even less" General Eric Shinseki

  9. #9
    Cyburbian
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    ECU is not your only NC destination for Planning degrees.

    Appalachian State and UNC Charlotte both offer undergraduate planning degrees. Virginia Tech also has an undergraduate in Urban Planning (keep in mind out of state tuition costs).

    I personally went to Appalachian State, but I don't think its a school you'd want to attend based on your requirements (bigger school, etc). Our college football is great (3 time National Championship in FCS) but its still an FCS program (not BCS). I would spend some time in Greenville when you go to visit ECU, not just stay on campus. I spent a week down there several years ago, and I would definitely not have wanted to live there for 4 years during college. Far too many distractions for me, and crime is an issue there.

    Id go visit Appalachian, UNC Charlotte and VT if I were in your shoes. If you decide on an AppState visit, feel free to PM me and I can show you around campus if you want a tour that isn't biased towards the good stuff, I still live up here.

    If you decide to go on to get a masters in Planning, and still wish to stay in NC, go to UNC Chapel Hill if you can get in. One of the top 10 post-graduate planning schools in the country, a great town, and you've got the basketball there. Once I head back for a Masters I plan on applying to Chapel Hill myself.

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    Cyburbian Tide's avatar
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    As being one of the Eastern NC representatives on this board, slightly more east than Beach_Bum, I can say ECU is the regional go to for many planning departments and governments in the region. While UNC-W graduates many MPA students who enjoy long careers hopping from town to town as managers throughout coastal Carolina, ECU provides many MPO and Land Use Planners for Eastern NC, they just don't seem to move away .

    That said, I will also throw out the fact that ECU has an excellent Geography program with a great GIS component, probably the best in the state (from what I've heard).

    Greenville is a little out in the middle of no where, Raleigh is over an hour away and there isn't much else till you get to the beach. And you better like Marines in your town because besides Jacksonville and Wilmington -- Greenville is their go to on the weekends.

    I'd be happy to discuss ENC and ECU more if you want to drop me a private message.

    I second AG74683's remark about UNC as a great graduate program, was second on my short list when I went to grad school, went to Rutgers.
    @GigCityPlanner

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    The thing is I am looking into more than just a urban and regional planning degree right now. I just love history and I want to be able to pursue it as well. I would ultimately like to see myself working maybe for an architecture firm, a city or town where I would plan or help to preserve a town's buildings or historic neighborhoods or maybe a historic preservation area of a state agency.

    I am going to try to go to get my master's and although it is early, I am drawn more to historic preservation than just pure planning. Virginia Tech has a very policy driven program in urban planning from what I can tell. ECU has a B.S. in Public History, which looks really great. Do you think it would be possible to double major in the two fields- Public History and Urban and Regional planning at ECU?

    I will take a look at Appalachian State, too. Thanks for that suggestion. I am going down to talk to some of the professors in the history dept. at ECU during the summer. Unfortunately I will miss the chair of the Urban and regional planning while I am there. The College of Charleston has a HP and Community Planning degree, but unfortunately I don't think I could get the merit aid as easily there and it isn't a school known for a lot of school spirit (no AAARGGHing Pirates! The other school I am looking into is South Carolina. There I would go for History and Cultural Geography I think.

    Anyway, thanks for the help and information so far!

  12. #12
    Cyburbian Tide's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by country4me View post
    I am going to try to go to get my master's and although it is early, I am drawn more to historic preservation than just pure planning. Virginia Tech has a very policy driven program in urban planning from what I can tell. ECU has a B.S. in Public History, which looks really great. Do you think it would be possible to double major in the two fields- Public History and Urban and Regional planning at ECU?
    You can double major in almost anything you desire, if the classes are close sometimes you can even get credit toward both degrees. I graduated in 4 years with a dual Geography and Urban Studies degrees (and after failing my freshman semester). It can be done but you will be taking a minimum of 15-18 credits a semester (5-6 classes).
    @GigCityPlanner

  13. #13
    Cyburbian
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    Just graduated

    I just graduated from ECU's urban planning program. What would you like to know about it?

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    Hi nam0806,

    I guess one of the things that I am most curious about is the chance that I will be able to learn a bit about the preservation of the urban setting and how to be able to help a town (esp small historic ones) maintain their history and revitalize old places. I have heard that ECU is good for internship placement. Is that true? Is there a chance for me to be involved in the design area of urban planning? I know there has to be some policy/law courses, but I really like the thought of a more design driven path. Thanks for taking time to respond and helping me figure this out!

  15. #15
    Cyburbian
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    If you're asking about Historic Preservation, yes! They have a few courses for historic preservation. One especially in planning.

    PLAN 5985. Historic Preservation Planning (3) Same as HIST 5985 Historic preservation planning. Examines theoretical, legal, historical, and design bases of preservation planning.

    About internships, it's not required for a degree in Urban Planning from ECU. They highly suggest it. As far as placement goes, I am not exactly sure. I know one person who had an internship with the city of Greenville, but thats it.

    There are a lot of urban design classes for you to look at! One of them is PLAN 4003, which is a core class. It basically discusses the different design aspects of planning, it's fairly easy, and if you're into that, then great! It's really interesting.

    PLAN 3032 is the law class, it's a discussion of different NC subdivision regulations, and the basis behind planning.

    If you would like more resources than I could explain, I can send you this. It's our "pocket planner". It describes a lot of what you would like to know.

    http://www.ecu.edu/cs-cas/plan/uploa...12-edition.pdf

    Hope this helps! Please ask if you need anything else!

  16. #16
    Cyburbian
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    To refer to a previous poster, UNC Charlotte does not have an official community or urban and regional planning degree. It is just a concentration.

    http://geoearth.uncc.edu/Undergraduate/geography.html

    As far as I know, Appalachian State and East Carolina are the two B.S. degrees in Planning.

    East Carolina is the only one accredited for a B.S. Degree, and UNC Chapel Hill is accredited for Masters.

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