I graduated in 2010 with an undergraduate planning degree from one of the top planning schools in the country. After close to a year of looking for jobs I had had no interviews, so I contacted a nonprofit and started an unpaid internship at a Main Street organization in my hometown. Most of my academic work involved my hometown and I had always wanted to be involved in planning and development there, mostly because my interest in the field has come from the mistakes, disasters, and tragedies that have taken place there. My senior thesis looked at my neighborhood which over the past 50 years, urban renewal and then rampant land speculation (spawned by upzoning) destroyed. Then I looked at all(684) of the property records in the area to track ownership throughout the area as it concerns speculation(21 speculators own 60% of area). The same project found over 75% of the area’s properties to be vacant land.
The hope that the internship would lead to a paid position there or somewhere related never materialized, after close to year and a half I amicably left it. I have had four interviews in the past year, including one in my town for what seemed like a perfect first job involving redevelopment which after feeling I had aced the interview and was confident I would get the job, I was not chosen for it. I have been working a completely unrelated job, that doesn’t even require a high school diploma, for a year and a half, it has given me no transferable skills whatsoever. Should I go back to school and get a master’s in either Urban Planning or Real Estate Development? I have heard many people on this board recommend to not get a master’s in planning if you have a bachelor’s. The prospect of having that much debt does scare me because I could come out of this at 27 with debt and still have the same job prospects as I did when I went into this. My interest is in redevelopment.
Its getting to the point in the year that its soon going to be too late to take the GRE and apply for schools and I don’t know what road I should take. Sorry for the life story.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated