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Welcome to the Toulan School of Urban Studies & Planning

Welcome to the Toulan School of Urban Studies & Planning
The Toulan School students of today are the planners, visionaries and policy makers who will design and build the healthy communities of tomorrow.

Implementing sustainability projects & strategies

Implementing sustainability projects & strategies
Toulan School faculty are working with a cohort of seven cities across the country, from Maine to California, to help them implement sustainability projects and strategies.

Fearless Alumni: Lina Menard '13

Fearless Alumni: Lina Menard '13
A childhood affinity for small, cozy spaces grew into an adulthood interest in tiny homes and pared-down living.
Housing, jobs, parks and open space, pollution, traffic and social diversity. From the air we breathe to the length of our commute, myriad factors influence the “livability” of our cities. We prepare and inspire the students of Portland State University’s Toulan School of Urban Studies and Planning to take on the challenges that urban communities face — whether close to home or around the globe.

The Toulan School’s location in the heart of downtown Portland, Oregon affords students the unique opportunity to learn from, influence, analyze and share the urban innovations for which Portland and the Pacific Northwest are known. Undergraduate and graduate students engage directly with Portland-area non-profit organizations, business and governmental agencies and private sector firms, gaining practical experience and real-world understanding of the complexity and challenges of creating socially just and sustainable metropolitan regions.

Home to the nation’s oldest continuously operating program in urban studies, nationally recognized graduate programs, and four centers for research and innovation, the Toulan School provides an interdisciplinary training that equips students for careers in urban planning, real estate development, community development, sustainability, urban research and higher education, working in the public, private and non-profit sectors.

Our Programs

The Nohad A. Toulan School of Urban Studies and Planning offers programs for future-focused, problem-solving undergraduate, graduate and doctoral students who want to begin or extend their careers in community service. Envision yourself at one of the Toulan School programs below.

Undergraduate Degrees

An undergraduate degree in community development offers careers in:

  • Not-for-profit organizations
  • Private firms
  • State, regional and local governments

...preparing students to work on a range of issues including housing, community organizing, transportation, the environment and economic development.

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Master Degrees

We offer three Master's degrees programs and two dual degree programs:

  • Master of Urban and Regional Planning, for those seeking work as or directly with professional planners.
  • Master of Urban Studies, for those looking for careers in policy research and public and non-profit organizations.
  • Master of Real Estate Development, a joint program with the School of Business for those aiming to help build sustainable, healthy neighborhoods.
  • Public Health and Civil and Environment Engineering (with a transportation focus) Dual Degree Programs.

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Doctoral Degrees

The Nohad A. Toulan School of Urban Studies and Planning offers two doctoral degrees:

  • A Ph.D. in Urban Studies is an interdisciplinary program that prepares students to conduct research and teach about the processes and problems of urban areas and urbanization, such as social and economic inequalities, ecological systems disruptions, urban infrastructure and regional governance.
  • A Ph.D. in Urban Studies: Regional Science brings together multiple social science perspectives to analyze the growth and development of metropolitan areas, states and regions and prepares students for careers in academic institutions and research organizations.

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