The program's mission is to prepare future public leaders and create and disseminate new knowledge
that will assist communities and organizations in planning for:
- sustainable development;
- sustainable efficient conservation planning and management;
- and sustainable human quality-of-life within and across bioregions.
The program's faculty, staff, and students work with communities to
create community-based plans, programs and policies that sustain and enhance their culture,
resource base, built environment and economic vitality.
Program graduates will fill an important niche in the Intermountain West
and have skills that enable them to be effective planners in other parts of
the world. The initial focus of the program will be on Idaho, but with the
expectation that it will be expanded over time to include opportunities nationally and internationally.
Unique in North America
The Bioregional Planning and Community Design program is distinguished from
other planning programs around North America in two ways:
- it represents a university-wide, interdisciplinary approach that fully integrates education and research with community engagement; and
- it supports, promotes and advance bioregional thought and process.
Prepare for Success
Many of our students want to enhance their career opportunities with expertise and credentials in tactical community planning. A professional career in community planning requires a specific technical skill set, including the ability to think in terms of spatial relationships and to visualize the effects of plans and designs. You must also have strong written and oral communication skills, with the ability to reconcile varying viewpoints and to make constructive policy or strategic management recommendations.
Requirements for our master's degree vary, based on your area of specialization. Students complete 20 core credits that include studio credits, a community-based project and a professional project or thesis. Additional credits are taken in restricted and specialization courses for a total of 44 credits.
Our 15-credit graduate certificate program
provides the skills to effectively integrate planning concepts and principles into your related discipline.
All degrees and certificates for the program will be
granted and counted as achievements by participating
departments and colleges.
Students will be counted in the department and
college of their major professor/advisor, with all productivity referenced
to the established Bioregional Program.
Graduate students and upper-division undergraduates from other majors can participate in the program through
individual upper-division courses or a suite of courses. These courses are designed to meet the UI Core
Cluster requirements and to complement various existing degree programs.