Why join the American Planning Association?

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As Maryland APA's representative for Frederick, Washington, Allegany, Garrett Counties, and nearby parts of WV & PA, it's my responsibility to offer opportunities and resources for planners, students, commissioners, educators, engaged citizens, and allied professionals involved in creating communities that are more livable, sustainable, and resilient.

Here are ways to be involved with APA:

·       Allied Professionals and Interested Citizens - This is for all who have a passion for making places better and want to add their unique talents, perspectives, and concerns.

·       Planning Board Commissioners - Planning public officials - whether newly seated or well-seasoned - continue to need to master planning concepts and procedures and keep abreast of innovation and best practices.

·       Students - Membership is free for any student actively enrolled in a planning degree program, and they are also eligible for two years of reduced dues after ending their studies.

·       Practicing Planners - The American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) designation is the only nationwide, independent verification of planners' qualifications. After being accepted, one can take the examination based on these requirements:

1.   Be a current member of the American Planning Association.
2.  Be engaged in professional planning, either currently or in the past.
3.  Have completed, at the time of application submission, one of the combinations of education and corresponding years of professional planning experience listed in the chart below:

Level of Education* / Total Years of Professional Planning Experience Required:

  • Graduate degree in Planning from an accredited program** / 2 years of professional planning experience

  • Bachelor's degree in Planning from an accredited program** / 3 years of professional planning experience

  • Graduate degree in Planning from a program not accredited  / 3 years of professional planning experience

  • Any other post-graduate, graduate, or undergraduate degree *** / 4 years of professional planning experience

  • No college degree / 8 years

* The education may be obtained before, during, or after the experience.
** Degrees are determined by the Planning Accreditation Board to meet standards approved by the American Institute of Certified Planners and the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning.
*** Non-accredited undergraduate planning degrees and degrees in related and other disciplines (i.e. Geography, Architecture, History, Music, etc.) at undergraduate and post-graduate levels.

One of the most effective ways to prepare for the exam is to work in study groups, and I will be glad to help facilitate those. Also, MD-APA's Professional Development Officer, Jacquelyn Rouse, and I are available to help along with a wealth of materials from National APA: https://www.planning.org/join/all/.

Do feel free to contact me if you want more information,

Alan Feinberg, AICP
feinberg.alan2@gmail.com | 301-606-6717
Maryland Chapter of the American Planning Association Western Maryland Representative