Regional Planning Program Strategic Plan

  • Mission

    Training students to become citizen and professional planners through a process that emphasizes skill development, civic engagement, experiential learning and practical knowledge.


    The IUP Regional Planning Program strives to be the best undergraduate program in the Mid-Atlantic.


    Goal 1 Curriculum Development

    Curriculum should be oriented to the development of professional skills, expanding, community outreach and student needs.

    Objective: Streamline core curriculum of the Regional Planning program to improve course access and facilitate timely program completion.

    • Tactic: Realign course offerings with the PAB standards
    • Tactic: Offer a 1 credit professional development course

    Objective: Redefine and increase planning content within our two program concentrations.

    • Tactic: Require 9 credits within concentration areas to include Specialization to incorporate competencies in knowledge, skills, ethics and values

    Objective: Redesign course content to better focus on local municipal planning practice and functions. 

    • Tactic: Revise content in the following core courses, Urban Landscape, Introduction to Community Planning, Planning History and Theory, Policy planning, Implementation and Administration 

    Goal 2 Student Success 

    Strengthen students’ critical thinking, technical, writing and communication skills.

    Objective: Assess student learning in written, oral and visual communication.

    • Tactic: Participate in analytical and writing projects
    • Tactic: Enforce standards for academic achievement via minimum GPA and progress towards degree completion.

    Objective: Expand the pallet of technical tools within the program.

    • Tactic: Restructure core and concentration courses to include technical tools (GeoDesign and Visualization, Graphic Design and Communications)

    Goal 3 Student Life

    Create an environment where interaction and exchange between students, faculty, planning professionals and the community at large is encouraged, supported and maintained.

    Objective: Increase student and faculty participation in the PSO.

    • Tactic: Require students to earn service hours in the department (X number of hours per semester)
    • Tactic: Promote a speaker series to increase student and faculty participation

    Objective: Increase interaction and exchange between the PSO and “sister” organizations.

    • Tactic: Utilize PSO to connect with Indiana County Office of Planning and Development (ICOPD) Student Planner Program
    • Tactic: Connect PSO members with other student organizations on-campus (Eco Club)

    Objective: Involve PSO members in professional and community outreach activities.

    • Tactic: Establish a formal linkage with PA chapter of APA
    • Tactic: Support student participation in PA-APA Annual Conference

    Objective: Maintain cohort and inter-cohort identification among planning students.

    • Tactic: Require inter cohort students to participate in the 1-credit Professional Development (PD) course

    Goal 4 Marketing and Enrollment

    Increase recruitment to an average of 15 students per cohort while actively recruiting a more diverse student body.

    Objective: Use existing media channels and other opportunities to increase program exposure while highlighting faculty and student accomplishments.

    • Tactic: Make IUP Public Relations (PR) office aware of significant Regional Planning program initiatives.
    • Tactic: Create web stories in timely fashion describing community engagement and outreach activities of the program students and faculty.

    Objective: Target and distribute program media to high schools and community colleges throughout the state and Southwest Pennsylvania.

    • Tactic: Use social media to highlight the scope of our profession.
    • Tactic: Schedule PowerPoint presentations in high schools and community colleges.

    Objective: Develop systematic procedures and mechanisms to collect and report program data.

    • Tactic: Conduct an alumni employment survey using Qualtrics
    • Tactic: Conduct an a student exist survey of program graduates

    Goal 5 Community, Professional and Alumni Relations

    Expand, enhance and maintain relationships between the planning program, local communities, planning professionals and program alumni.

    Objective: Establish formal agreements between the Regional Planning program and community partners.

    • Tactic: Inventory existing community partners.
    • Tactic: Identify new opportunities for student experiential learning (internships) and community engagement.
    • Tactic: Host and support events that draw together faculty, alumni and community partners.
    • Tactic: Host two events a year involving the Regional Planning Advisory Board

    Goal 6 Research, Practice and Teaching

    Promote applied research funding and visibility to enhance student learning, faculty scholarship, professional development and community engagement.

    Recognize scholarship activities appropriate to a professional degree program such as Regional Planning and facilitate a scholarship of engagement.

    Objective: Reward faculty for securing research grant funding for student support, equipment and student professional development.

    • Tactic: Use alternate workload assignments to reward faculty working with students on applied projects
    • Tactic: support and encourage faculty AICP certification

    Objective: Increase exposure of Regional Planning faculty research activities and student community service projects

    • Tactic: Engage partners in cooperative projects that benefit communities, students and faculty.