Program Description The MCP program at VIU combines research, applied learning through a variety of in-community, real-world projects, and interactions with the professional planning community to give you a wide range of skills and knowledge. This community planning program is fully accredited through the Canadian Institute of Planners, alongside Canada’s historic planning schools. The program focuses on: Small city and town planning; Community and urban design, including a strong GIS component; Rural/urban interface planning; First Nations planning (with attention to the issues relevant to the First Nations of Vancouver Island and coastal British Columbia); Sustainable economic issues, including tourism; and Emerging issues such as climate change and planning for post-fossil fuel communities. This is an intensive program with many opportunities to apply the skills and techniques learned in the program to "real life" planning questions and problems. Students will be engaged in self-directed learning and group studies, seminars and discussions, and will have many opportunities to meet and learn from professional planners. There is also a strong focus on urban design and visual representations of community planning, including GIS. Graduates from accredited planning programs work in a variety of placements, from local governments (current and long range planning, sustainability planning, parks, heritage, social planning, and more) to provincial agencies (community affairs, environment, lands, and parks) to federal and international organizations (non-profit and non-governmental organizations, international government agencies). Accredited planners also work in private industry, providing skills and advice to all levels of government, developers, citizens, and agencies. In addition, planners may be employed in less traditional environments where they can apply their skills in policy development and change management. They work in both private and public agencies across a wide spectrum– on issues such as economic development, social sustainability, environmental protection, and cultural awareness. In short, the knowledge and skills gained at an accredited program are highly transferrable to many career and employment opportunities.