A Degree in Urban Studies and Planning

Students earning a degree in urban studies possess a robust skillset for entry level positions in a wide variety of fields, including business, non-profit and governmental sectors. Community development, research, analysis and writing about urban areas are among the many skills accorded to degree holders in urban studies. In addition, students are well-prepared to further their career goals by attending graduate education in law, planning, business, economics, or other urban-related fields.


Transferable Skills

An urban studies and planning degree offers:

  • Oral and written advocacy
  • Training in Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
  • Critical thinking
  • Policy analysis
  • Paid and for-credit urban service opportunities


Some Careers in Urban Studies and Planning

CareerMedian SalaryMarket Growth
City and Regional Planning Aides*$30,480 – 39,460 5% – 8%
Transportation Managers*$85,400 – 87,3402% – 4%
Fundraising$52,430 – 55,0909% – 13%
Construction Management$82,610 – 85,6305% – 8%
Geographic Information Systems Technicians*$70,350 – 83,4102% – 4%

Other areas of reported job titles:
City Planner, Community Development Director, Community Development Planner, Housing Development Specialist, Housing Grant Analyst, Neighborhood Planner, Planner, Planning Director, Regional Planner, Urban Design Consultant

*Advanced degree necessary for median salaries

Source: O*NET Online, in partnership with the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment & Training Administration

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Graduate Study

This degree also provides a solid foundation for graduate study in:

  • Urban and Regional Planning
  • Law School
  • Business (MBA)
  • Master and Ph.D programs in Sociology, Political Science, Economics etc.

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Notable People With an Urban Studies and Planning Major

  • Gabrielle Giffords (Congresswoman-State of Arizona, Urban Planner)
  • Jane Jacobs (Journalist, Author, Writer, Philosopher, Urban Scholar)
  • Norman Krumholz (City Planner and City Commissioner, City of Cleveland, OH)
  • Frank Lloyd Wright (Architect)
  • Daniel Hudson Burnham (Architect, Urban Planner)
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