Pursue your passion for promoting livable, sustainable cities with an undergraduate minor in Community Development.

Degree Overview

Undergraduates often wonder, “Is it worth it to declare a minor?” If you’re passionate about urban housing or creating sustainable cities and envision yourself pursuing a career related to either of these subjects, then the answer is “yes.” 

Interest in community, real estate, and sustainable urban development has steadily grown in recent years among students.  Our urban region has attracted considerable national and international attention and been a center of activity and innovation in addressing the challenges of incorporating these development principles into its planning an professional practice.  The minors in Community Development, Real Estate Development, and Sustainable Urban Development offer students the opportunity to focus their education on these important and growing fields.

The Toulan School of Urban Studies and Planning offers undergraduate students three exciting minors in Community Development:  

  • Community Development Minor - We understand community development as a process in which people act together to promote the social, economic, political, and physical well-being of our community.  Students graduating with a minor in community development will be citizen activists, empowered to take leadership roles in public affairs.  Community Development minors often find careers in not-for-profit organizations, private consulting firms, advocacy groups, and state, regional and local governments.  Community development practitioners work on a range of issues including housing, community organizing, transportation, the environment, and economic development.

    Total Credits: 27
    Courses must include USP 300, USP 301, USP 302. A minimum of 15 credits of additional USP coursework must be taken. Courses taken under the undifferentiated grading option (pass/no pass) will not be accepted toward fulfilling minor requirements. Students who have already completed some of the requirements from the minor before Fall 2013 should meet with the Community Development Student Advisor before Fall 2013 to ensure a
    smooth transition to the new requirements.
  • Real Estate Development - The development and management of real estate is a vital function of the urban economy.  The real estate development minor will provide education to students to enter the industry.  Students in the program will develop skills to evaluate real estate development proposals and understand how real estate development fits into regional planning and economic processes.

    Total Credits: 32
    Required (19 credits):
    USP 311 Introduction to Urban Planning (4)
    USP 312 Urban Housing and Development (4)
  • USP 323 Real Estate Development and Finance (4)
    USP 431/EC 431 Urban Economics (4)
    USP/RE 438 Real Estate Law (3)

    Electives: See Bulletin or website for approved list of electives. Note: additional USP and RE courses may qualify as electives with approval of Program Coordinator.

For more information, please contact the Minor in Real Estate Coordinator: Dr Matthew Gebhardt, AICP, Toulan School of Urban Studies & Planning, mfg@pdx.edu, 503-725-5174. 

  • Sustainable Urban Development Minor - The minor in Sustainable Urban Development will provide students with an opportunity to further their understanding of what it will take to make cities sustainable.  Students who complete the minor will understand the foundations of sustainability, the tools of sustainable development, and the issues and challenges of making places sustainable.

    Several of the courses offered in the core and elective offerings provide community based learning opportunities with community partner's within the region.  In addition, courses will provide an introduction to emerging technologies in "green" building innovations and economic development.

    Total Credits: 27
    (An acceptable alternative may substitute for this course): UNST 224: Environmental Sustainability (4)

    Required (15 credits):
    USP 313: Urban Planning Issues (4)
    USP 324: Healthy Communities (4)*
    USP 325: Community and the Built Environment (4)
    USP 490: Green Economics and Sustainable Development (3)
    *Please Note: USP 324 and other courses appearing in both cluster and major/minor listings may only be counted as major/minor credits OR cluster credits, NOT both.

    Electives (12 credits): See Bulletin or website for approved list of electives.

Career Opportunities

Opportunities are emerging worldwide in sustainable urban planning and real estate development. Graduating with one of our Community Development minors helps position you for a career in government, architecture, landscape architecture, law, land use, activism and more. 

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