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Demography, Poverty and Immigration Focused Academic Programs



University of Southern California

Bachelor of Policy, Planning, and Development at the Price School of Public Policy


The mission of the USC Sol Price School of Public Policy is to improve the quality of life for people and their communities, here and abroad.

We achieve this mission through education and research that promote innovative solutions to the most critical issues facing society.

In today’s world of dynamic change and globalization, social challenges have become increasingly complex. Solving society’s most pressing issues – including sustainability and the environment, healthcare reform, immigration, infrastructure, urban development, social planning and policy, affordable housing and governance – now requires innovation and collaboration. These issues call for leaders who are able to move beyond their areas of expertise and work across the public, private and nonprofit sectors to find vital solutions.

Through its interdisciplinary approach, the school educates students to serve as innovators – and leaders – in their field. The school’s degree programs draw on the expertise of faculty and practicing professionals to create a learning environment whose breadth and depth sets the Price School apart from all schools of its kind. In 2012, the school ranked sixth nationwide among “America’s Best Graduate Schools” for public affairs, according to U.S. News & World Report.

At the Price School, students receive an enriching education that:

  • Combines social sciences, professional expertise, and the resources of a great research university to offer students breadth, depth, and variety as they pursue their interests and design their programs.
  • Centers on and values the relationships that develop between students and teachers.
  • Offers both academic and relevant real-world experiences, and draws widely on the expertise of networks of engaged counselors, advisors, alumni, and prominent professionals.
  • Encourages innovation, entrepreneurship, experimentation, and collaboration.
  • Fosters a multidisciplinary and problem-solving ethic.
  • Focuses broadly and inclusively on the issues, constituencies, structures, and institutions engaged in public life – in both governance and the built environment.
  • Utilizes the City of Los Angeles and the greater Southern California region as a living laboratory in which to learn and put into practice the lessons of the classroom.




University of Minnesota

Urban and Regional Planning Program at Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs


Planning is the professional discipline that seeks to influence how neighborhoods, cities, and regions develop.

Planners bring together knowledge and expertise from sociology, engineering, law, architecture, social work, biology, landscape architecture, urban design, and other disciplines to shape cities and regions.

A Specially Designed Urban Planning Graduate Program

The Master of Urban and Regional Planning (MURP) degree program is designed to produce professionals able to think across fields of expertise to see and act upon the links among environmental systems, land use and transportation systems, infrastructure development, and housing and community development. The urban planning graduate program provides the technical and analytical skills needed to think strategically about developing and implementing plans at the neighborhood, city, or regional level.

As a planner, you can work for positive change by using your skills to help build cities, tackle urban sprawl, upgrade housing, protect the environment, design regional institutions, and promote economic development.

What Our Master of Urban and Regional Planning Degree Graduates Do

Planners from our urban planning graduate program work for government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and private consulting firms. Urban and regional planners work to improve communities by preserving and enhancing quality-of-life, protecting the natural-built environment, promoting equity and equality, improving services to all the communities that make up cities and regions, and promoting efficient and sustainable growth and development.




University of Illinois

Department of Urban and Regional Planning


The University of Illinois has a long and rich history in the training of urban and regional planners, dating back to 1913 when Charles Mulford Robinson, one of the era’s most distinguished planners, was appointed Professor of Civic Design in the University’s Landscape Architecture Division. At that time, only the University of Illinois and Harvard University offered courses in urban planning. In 1945 the University authorized a master’s degree in urban planning, and in 1953 an undergraduate degree was established. Both programs were offered in the Department of Landscape Architecture until 1965, when the Department of Urban Planning became its own academic unit. The Department established the Ph.D in Regional Planning in 1983.

The Department of Urban and Regional Planning is one of the largest planning programs in the U.S., and it is one of very few programs that offers three degrees: a Bachelor of Arts in Urban Planning, a Master of Urban Planning, and a Doctor of Philosophy in Regional Planning. It also offers a Minor in Urban Planning, as well as joint master’s degree options, including with Law, Architecture, and Landscape Architecture. The size of the planning faculty, and the Department’s presence on an Urbana campus with eleven colleges, nearly 3,000 faculty, 41,000 students, and over $330 million in funded research annually means that Illinois planning students have an extraordinarily rich array of learning and research opportunities available to them.

Located in the College of Fine and Applied Arts along with the School of Architecture and Department of Landscape Architecture, the Department of Urban and Regional Planning includes design components in its curricula through its own teaching and via linkages with those units while providing a planning education with firm roots in the social and policy sciences. The Planetizen 2012 Guide to Graduate Urban Planning Programs ranks Illinois among the top five programs in the United States and the leading planning program in the Midwest.



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