What department are you a graduate student in?
I am a student in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning.
Why did you decide to go to graduate school?
I have known I wanted to be an urban planner since high school, and urban planning is a field where a master’s degree is necessary. In that sense, grad school has been something I knew I was going to do, even before I started undergrad.
Did your interests change throughout your program?
Definitely! When I applied for the master’s program, I thought I was interested in studying housing. However, I came to realize that environmental planning was where my true interest was, which did come as a bit of a surprise – I never saw myself as a “hard science” person, but I’ve truly been thriving in this specialization.
What do you want to do with your advanced degree?
When I graduate with my MSP, I hope to work with coastal communities to help prepare residents for an uncertain future. Globally, billions of people live in areas increasingly prone to flooding and other natural disasters, and proper planning is needed to ensure they stay safe when these disasters strike. Through advocacy and planning, I hope to help build more resilient communities that can thrive even through adversity.
Lauren Thornberg is a Masters student in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at FSU.