U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Urban Planning
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 1.5 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
Jump to a detailed profile or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Business Search - 14 Million verified businesses
Search for:  near: 
 
Old 11-23-2010, 05:20 PM
 
44 posts, read 54,565 times
Reputation: 44
Default Many questions about my plans to become an urban/regional planner, but also, what is it like from your own experiences?

Right now I am a senior in high school and I am going to pursue a career in urban planning and development, but first I want to know, do you necessarily have to be good at math since it is related to architecture?

I always have trouble understanding the difference between urban planning and civil engineering, can someone please explain?

I'm applying to colleges in NYC, and most of the schools have the major "Urban studies and affairs". I checked online and what I found was that many who study that major get into the career, so my question is, if the school doesn't have the specific major "Urban planning and design" is that major fine still none the less? (One of the colleges I applied to though that is known for architecture is Pratt Institute so that may be my best choice next to NYU which has the specific major of urban planning)

Lastly, for all of those who are in the career now, how is it? Is it what you expected? I will be in New York City so if you live in that area it would be extra helpful as well.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 11-24-2010, 12:25 PM
 
21,440 posts, read 34,547,137 times
Reputation: 10465
Realistically the odds of any one person that begins college with a major of "urban planning" and then going on to begin work in that field are pretty slim. While one does not need a tremendous amount of mathematical talent one does need to be able to understand the sorts of information that are presented in mathematical ways including data from developers, other governmental agencies, investors, etc.

Should you prefer to attempt to purssue a degree in architecture most schools have programs that are longer in length and result in a terminal Masters degree.

The number of jobs for undergrad urban planning majors is depressingly small, and the competition even to get unpaid internships is quite high.

Urban affairs / policy is generally a whole other ball of wax, preparing some folks simply to be paper pushers in large bueracracies, others for jobs with "policy institutes", and others for the dreaded path of "community organizer".

My advice would be to strongly evaluate both your real talents / abilities and pursue the BROADEST prepartion possible so that as you get into junior year of college you can have a shot at the best possible internships that will give you a solid shot at a decent job upon graduation AND /OR be well positioned for graduate studies, perhaps in a field that would actually not involve any cost from your pocket...
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-24-2010, 08:35 PM
 
44 posts, read 54,565 times
Reputation: 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by chet everett View Post
Realistically the odds of any one person that begins college with a major of "urban planning" and then going on to begin work in that field are pretty slim. While one does not need a tremendous amount of mathematical talent one does need to be able to understand the sorts of information that are presented in mathematical ways including data from developers, other governmental agencies, investors, etc.

Should you prefer to attempt to purssue a degree in architecture most schools have programs that are longer in length and result in a terminal Masters degree.

The number of jobs for undergrad urban planning majors is depressingly small, and the competition even to get unpaid internships is quite high.

Urban affairs / policy is generally a whole other ball of wax, preparing some folks simply to be paper pushers in large bueracracies, others for jobs with "policy institutes", and others for the dreaded path of "community organizer".

My advice would be to strongly evaluate both your real talents / abilities and pursue the BROADEST prepartion possible so that as you get into junior year of college you can have a shot at the best possible internships that will give you a solid shot at a decent job upon graduation AND /OR be well positioned for graduate studies, perhaps in a field that would actually not involve any cost from your pocket...

Thank you for the response and all your answers. As far as what you said about the urban affairs policy, this is a big problem to me because the colleges I applied to have that major. To be honest, for a while I did not know what career I wanted to pursue but when I found out about urban planning I really felt like I found what was best, I can't really think of anything else I would want to be instead. How about if I just stuck to the civil engineering major if possible? I dont really have the desire to be an architect, I do think it is interesting but I'm not good with actually designing plans artistically.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-25-2010, 11:10 PM
 
7,334 posts, read 7,906,926 times
Reputation: 2885
Civil engineers do things like design and build bridges, roads, dams, canals and buildings. Math is very important to civil engineering, as it is with any other engineering discipline. If you're no good at math, you won't make a very good engineer.

What is it that interests you about urban planning? If you're no good at art or math, what are your strengths and talents?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-26-2010, 11:32 AM
 
551 posts, read 730,030 times
Reputation: 344
Some schools have geography programs with emphasis in transportation planning and urban planning/design. If you know you want to go into planning, then engineering may not be the way to go because of the rigorous coursework in math and science. You'll probably get burned out. I do feel it is a versatile degree because of how broad it is.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-26-2010, 08:55 PM
 
44 posts, read 54,565 times
Reputation: 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by wburg View Post
Civil engineers do things like design and build bridges, roads, dams, canals and buildings. Math is very important to civil engineering, as it is with any other engineering discipline. If you're no good at math, you won't make a very good engineer.

What is it that interests you about urban planning? If you're no good at art or math, what are your strengths and talents?
I had a feeling about that, just wanted to make sure. At first I told my parents I wanted to get into urban planning specifically, but my father mentioned civil engineering because of the somewhat similarity that's how it came up.

As far as what interest me about it, I have always had an interest in cities. The different aspects about them between the transportation, skyscrapers, parks and infrastructure catch my eye and as an urban planner I like the idea I would be able to take part in the development of them. I cant really think of many "talents" that could bring me into a successful career. My grades aren't bad I work hard and make A's and B's, it is just many successful jobs involve skills in math and science (such as engineering, the medical field) but those are two subjects I have deplored for the longest. Its english and history that I am better in but not many occupations pay quite a lot of money with those skills. Thank you for your answer
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-26-2010, 09:01 PM
 
44 posts, read 54,565 times
Reputation: 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by tban View Post
Some schools have geography programs with emphasis in transportation planning and urban planning/design. If you know you want to go into planning, then engineering may not be the way to go because of the rigorous coursework in math and science. You'll probably get burned out. I do feel it is a versatile degree because of how broad it is.
Thanks, that first part lifted my hopes. I can't see what location you're in, but if you are close to the NYC area, would you happen to know if any colleges offer what you mentioned? (I know NYU does, fordham has civil, and most of the others I applied to have urban studies)
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-28-2010, 06:52 PM
 
551 posts, read 730,030 times
Reputation: 344
Quote:
Originally Posted by $hayT93 View Post
Thanks, that first part lifted my hopes. I can't see what location you're in, but if you are close to the NYC area, would you happen to know if any colleges offer what you mentioned? (I know NYU does, fordham has civil, and most of the others I applied to have urban studies)
One of the senior planners who will be retiring soon at my workplace went to Columbia University in NYC. He studied Urban Planning I believe. He has worked in transportation planning his whole career. Columbia is an Ivy League school so the competition will be fierce.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Over $84,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Urban Planning

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2014, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 - Top