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University of Iowa National Community Planning Month Workshop

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Published on Dec 16, 2011

URPSA (Urban and Regional Planning Student Organization) organized two events in Fall 2011 at the University of Iowa to raise student awareness of ideological attacks on planning and how to appropriately address these perspectives in the public. Thus, these events support the advancement of the planning profession. Approximately 15 students and 1 faculty member attended the first event, which was held October 26, 2011. URPSA president, Robyn Fennig, and vice-president, Kaley Bangston, delivered a presentation to highlight real-world techniques used to twist planning ideas. The presentation also showed students how to better prepare themselves for opposition to planning and where to further research the issue. Additionally, Fennig and Bangston sought out 3practicing planners in the Midwest to develop case studies as the basis for group discussion.

URPSA sees this activity as great linkage between the American Planning Association's "Communications Bootcamp" series, to encourage professional development and promote planning ideology. Students have used this event as a spring board to develop strategies to better understand ideological attacks and strengthen their convictions as planners, by sharing findings and media stories, as well as attending events in the community. URPSA will continue to lead the discussion on overcoming anti-planning ideology and the transition from the academic setting to the professional world.

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