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 I simply didn’t know what I didn’t know. The CPI course opened my eyes to all the resources, data, and tools available to community groups. 

-- Citizen Planner, Fall 2015

How do I apply?

The eight-week CPI course is offered every spring and fall on Wednesday eveningsSign up for our newsletter to be notified of the next application period, which begins February 24, 2021.

We receive many more applications than we have seats (30). To select the participants for each course, we consider how applicants will be able to use the information they receive. We also strive for geographic diversity in each cohort–for that reason, we generally don’t accept more than ONE person from any one community organization. We receive over 200 applications for each course. If you are not accepted the first time round, please apply again! 

The Spring course is in April and May. In 2020, the Spring course was canceled due to COVID-19 shut-downs.

The Fall course is in October and November. In 2020, the Fall course will run from September 30-November 18.

What are the classes?

The course includes three required core classes on city planning, zoning, and  development and three special topic classes. The special topic classes are different each semester. See the classes section of the website for current topics.

The final week there is an optional workshop session where participants can make their final project presentations.

Participants are actively engaged in learning from each other, as well as from the instructors. One of the goals of CPI is to provide practical tools individuals can take back to their neighborhood organizations or communities. 

This course has been developed for individuals and leaders within neighborhood organizations who are highly motivated to engage in planning issues on equal footing with other stakeholders.

To make the most of your time investment, class sessions will be structured to be relevant to your interests and needs. Real life examples will be included as much as possible with plenty of opportunities for learner interactions through Q&A and group exercises.

How much does it cost?

Core Classes: $50 total for the orientation and 3 core classes (required)
Special Topic Classes: $25 per class (minimum 2 required) (Courses fees will be adjusted for online sessions.)

Course fees cover our costs of a buffet dinner and materials. You will receive handout materials at every session and a “Neighborhood Planning Workbook”.

Partial scholarships are available ($50) for those with financial need. Participants can also choose to be a program "Champion" by paying for someone's scholarship.

Final Paper or Presentation

You will also be required to complete a final paper or presentation of your choosing. You will receive information about this at the first class. One way to meet the project requirement is to make a presentation at the optional Workshop session at the end of the course. 

Upon completing the orientation, 3 core classes, 2 special topic classes, and a final paper or presentation, you earn a Citizen Planner Certificate of Completion.

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Become a Citizen Planner

Spring 2021 applications are now closed. Successful applicants will be notified on March 29. Sign-up for our email updates at the bottom of the page.

"I found the CPI course to be energizing and the instructors to be generous and encouraging."—Citizen Planner, Fall 2015

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