• Cyburbia is a friendly big tent, where we share our experiences and thoughts about urban planning practice, the built environment, planning adjacent topics, and anything else that comes to mind. No ads, no spam, and it's free. It's easy to join!

Schools: Canada 🇨🇦 UBC or Dal? - environmental planning

kpa21

Member
Messages
9
Points
0
I've been accepted to the MA in Planning at UBC as well as the MPlan at Dalhousie. I need advice on which one I should go with.

Interests: environmental planning, renewable energy development, urban sustainability, climate change mitigation

UBC pros:
-cheaper
-closer to family/friends
-can network with future employers in BC (I want to work and live in BC after grad school)
-can take classes at SFU's REM program (resource and environmental management - awesome program)
-BC relevant case studies/curriculum (bylaws, etc)
-prestigious program (everyone always says it's impossible to get in - my ego doesn't want to turn down this opportunity)

UBC cons:
-have heard its a very theoretical program (I have an arts degree and want a program that will provide me with hard skills)
-my boyfriend will be studying at Dal
-no appropriate supervisor (?)/limited expertise in renewable energy planning (Mark Stevens is my best bet)
-focus on social planning (?)
-I'll be staying in the 'Vancouver bubble"
-commuter school; no sense of community(?)


Dal pros:
-practical studio-based curriculum
-smallest planning school in Canada
-environmental planning oriented supervisors (Patricia Manuel, Eric Rapaport)
-lot's of renewable energy research going on in Halifax at the moment (recent wind turbine developments)
-my boyfriend will be there
-environmental niche with an emphasis on climate change mitigation

Dal cons:
-more expensive
-far from home ($800/8 hour flight)
-hard to network and find an internship in BC while I'm living in Halifax
-may be more difficult to transition back to BC after grad school


Which seems like a better fit for me?
I'd love to hear from anyone who has attended either of these programs.

Thanks!
 

wooffs

Member
Messages
6
Points
0
Hi kpa, I can't be of much help as I too am debating between UBC and another school (U of T). I think it comes down on how essential it is for you to live and work in BC after graduating (e.g. what if your boyfriend finds a job out east after he graduates?). If that is a priority for you, even if SCARP isn't exactly aligned with your interests you would be able to supplement content in other ways (e.g. at SFU as you mentioned), but if there was a job opening in BC you would probably have a better chance coming from UBC. By the way, I was wondering if you have heard anything about UBC's restructuring of the program and how it might affect the last cohort (2014) before they get rid of the current program. I am (perhaps unreasonably) quite worried about possible implications of this change...
 

kpa21

Member
Messages
9
Points
0
Wooffs - I am new to Cyburbia, and blogs more generally, so this is a less than ideal setting for me to communicate with you in. However, I have similar concerns about SCARP's upcoming reorganization, curriculum, etc. I'd love to talk with you further. If you are interested please email me at kpa21@sfu.ca and we'll take it from there!

Cheers,

K.
 

Synx

Member
Messages
9
Points
0
SCARP's current restructuring and the introduction of the MCRP program will not affect the 2014/15 cohort.
 
Last edited:
Messages
3,115
Points
26
I've been accepted to the MA in Planning at UBC as well as the MPlan at Dalhousie. I need advice on which one I should go with. . .
I haven't attended those programs, but I am middle-aged and have observed thousands of relationships.
Unless you and your boyfriend are engaged and have a set wedding date in the near future, UBC seems like the obvious choice.
 

ColoGI

Cyburbian
Messages
2,565
Points
18
I haven't attended those programs, but I am middle-aged and have observed thousands of relationships.
Unless you and your boyfriend are engaged and have a set wedding date in the near future, UBC seems like the obvious choice.

I moved up to Seattle for UW with the GF. That lasted a year.

And my impression from doing projects with UBC student was that UBC had them doing practical stuff on the ground. You'll have to get used to the constant gray from Sept-May, but besides that great location and city.

.02
 

korbsy

Member
Messages
1
Points
0
Hi K!

Many years later, I am having a similar dilemma - which school did you choose?

How did things turn out?

I'd love to hear about your experience!

Thanks. :)
 
Top