New degree for planning the future of Greater Western Sydney

Date: 04/11/2009

As Greater Western Sydney's (GWS) population continues to boom, demand for skilled urban planners is set to rise. Responding to the need, the University of Western Sydney is expanding its urban management and planning programs.

From 2010, the School of Social Sciences at UWS will offer a new Bachelor of Social Science/ Master of Urban Management and Planning degree.

Professor Kevin Dunn, from the School of Social Sciences, says the Urban Planning program is intended for local students with aspirations for a career in urban management, strategic planning and policy development.

"GWS is one of Australia's most diverse, dynamic and profitable regions, and is expected to significantly change over the next decade as businesses, industry and residents are drawn into the area," says Professor Dunn.

"In the coming years, employers will be seeking out urban planning professionals who have an understanding of the local region and can respond to the community's needs.

"The University of Western Sydney is well placed to provide such graduates who have been drawn from the local region and understand the development pressures of GWS because they have lived, worked and studied amongst it."

The four-year program has been constructed to meet the needs of students and employers in GWS and has strong links with local Councils and industry.

Students begin by studying the Bachelor of Social Science. This initial component of the program is designed to give students the professional and scholarly education to take a leadership role in urban management, strategic planning and policy development.

Following the successful completion of the initial three-year degree, the students will receive guaranteed entry into the final year Master of Urban Management and Planning.

Penrith City Council, Blacktown City Council and Wollondilly Shire Council have all signed to support the new program by providing scholarships to students, as well as being involved in guest lectures, local field trips and student placements programs.

Students will also benefit from working closely with the University's own Urban Research Centre, a national leader in research on cities and urban management.

The Bachelor of Social Science/Master of Urban Management and Planning is accredited by the Planning Institute of Australia.

The program will be officially launched by Chris Johnson at the UWS Parramatta campus on Thursday 5th November, 2009.

Chris Johnson, a consultant working in the fields of architecture, urban design and planning, was NSW Government Architect for 10 years; Executive Director with NSW Planning for 4 years; and has been a member of the Central Sydney Planning Committee for over 12 years. In his current role, Mr Johnson drives key projects for Housing NSW with the Minister for Housing, The Hon. David Borger.

WHAT: Launch of the new Urban Planning program
WHEN: 3:00pm, Thursday 5 November, 2009
WHERE: Ground Floor, Room 2. Building EB, UWS Parramatta Campus, cnr James Ruse Drive and Victoria Road, Rydalmere.



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Danielle Roddick
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