Planning is a dynamic profession which involves creation of more convenient, lasting, efficient, economical and attractive spaces for people to live and work. It is also known as town planning, urban, regional or city planning. One of the most important objectives of planning is concerned with creating sustainable spaces where current and future generations can live, work and play. It helps in envisioning future of a towns and cities and how they will adapt to challenges like population growth and other environmental changes. As population is increasing and land availability is becoming scarce, it is a challenge for planners to offer better choices to people for healthy and spacious living in urban areas. Good urban planning is important to find the right balance between new development and environmental protection.
Planning as a profession has tremendous potential to shape the world around us. A career in planning gives one the opportunity to shape cities, towns and villages while keeping in mind ease of living, health and preservation of natural resources. Town planners find numerous career opportunities in Town and Country planning departments of state governments, local bodies, educational institutions, NGOs, real estate companies and various multidisciplinary environments.
There are three main degrees that are awarded in planning: an undergraduate degree (B.Plan), a master’s degree (M.Plan) and a PhD. Generally, a master’s level degree in planning is considered ideal for students as it enables specialization and thus gives better job prospects. Urban planning, regional planning, transportation planning, environmental planning, housing, city planning and infrastructure planning are the specializations provided at the master’s level. Many town planners who obtain a Ph.D. in planning pursue a career in academics or research.
Besides a formal degree, students of planning must have several qualities to excel in this field. Students must have the ability to visualize spatial arrangements with a balance of technical competence, creativity and practical approach. Sound analytical skills to make effective decisions are some other key virtues students must develop during their planning education.
Before a students proceed to choose a career in planning, it is essential to that they know their strengths and weaknesses. Since career choices are critical to long term success, it makes sense to invest time and energy in finding their latent and natural abilities. An effective admission counselor can help students in recognising their potential.
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