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Executive Master of Urban Planning

Expand your knowledge—and your network—in a program that elevates accomplished professionals from a range of backgrounds into even higher levels of achievement, all in the service of building more resilient communities.

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Fill out this form to hear from a Price admissions counselor, get invited to webinars for prospective students, and learn more about admissions and financial aid.

The EMUP program has been paused.

Executive Master of Urban Planning
Program Pause

Why has the online Executive Master of Urban Planning Program been paused?

The Price School of Public Policy has decided to pause the online Executive Master of Urban Planning program for the next academic year as part of our ongoing strategic planning and internal review policies. We use these pauses to ensure that we are delivering the best possible educational experience to our students, as well as to continually align the program with the changing needs of the urban planning field.

When will the program resume?

We anticipate that the program will resume sometime during the 2024-2025 academic year.

Will applications be accepted during the pause?

No, applications will not be accepted during the program pause.

If I am interested in the online Executive Master of Urban Planning Program, how can I stay informed about when applications will resume?

If you are interested in the online Executive Master of Urban Planning Program, we encourage you to fill out our request for information form. By doing so, you will be added to our mailing list, and we will keep you informed about updates regarding the program’s resumption and application process. We also encourage you to check this website regularly for the most up-to-date information.

Will the program change when it resumes?

During the pause, we will be thoroughly reviewing the Executive Master of Urban Planning program to ensure that it meets the evolving needs of the industry and provides the skills and knowledge so that professionals in urban planning and adjacent fields can gain the skills needed to build more vibrant, just, and sustainable cities.

We will also be seeking input and feedback from students and faculty to ensure that the program is aligned with the needs and aspirations of our community. As a result, there may be changes to the program when it resumes,

If I have additional questions about the Executive Master of Urban Planning Program pause, whom can I contact?

If you have any additional questions about the Executive Master of Urban Planning Program pause, we encourage you to reach out to [email protected].

If my career advancement can’t wait until the Executive Master of Urban Planning Program resumes, what are my options?

We understand that career advancement is a top priority, and we want to support you in achieving your goals. If the pause in the online Executive Master of Urban Planning Program does not align with your career timeline, we recommend that you consider the USC Price School’s online Master of Public Administration (MPA) program.

The online MPA provides students with the knowledge and skills needed to make a difference in the public sector, and it is designed for working professionals who need a flexible and convenient way to earn their degree. You can find out more about the online MPA program by visiting our website. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at [email protected]. We are here to support you in your career journey.

Can I still stay involved with the Price School during the pause in the Executive Master of Urban Planning Program?

Yes! We encourage all prospective students and alumni to stay engaged with the Price School of Public Policy community during this pause. We host a variety of events throughout the year, including lectures, workshops, and networking events, which are open to the public.

Additionally, you can follow us on social media, including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram, to stay up to date on Price School news, events, and opportunities. You can also sign up for our newsletter on our website to receive regular updates about the Price School community. We look forward to staying connected with you.

Be the Catalyst for More Equitable Cities

To improve cities, you need skill and you need vision. You have both. Enhance them with an Executive Master of Urban Planning (EMUP)—a multidisciplinary degree that centers equitable development and is designed for seasoned professionals who want to build more vibrant, just and sustainable cities.

Focused and efficient, our sixteen-month online program connects ambitious professionals with the skills and the contacts necessary to advance their careers — all while maintaining the flexibility they need to meet their other obligations. During the program, students will:

  1. Develop enhanced skills in project management, financial analysis and data visualization to evaluate the feasibility of urban planning and real estate development projects.
  2. Innovate at the nexus of local public finance, private sector investment activity and public policy.
  3. Leverage commercial socio-economic and socio-demographic data to foster better decision making at local, neighborhood, city and regional scales.
  4. Navigate the interlocking ethical responsibilities engendered by neighborhood revitalization by developing shared visions with communities confronting gentrification, displacement and cultural erasure.
  5. Lead multi-disciplinary professional teams on equitable planning and development projects.

The program is tailored so that professionals in urban planning and adjacent fields can gain the skills needed to build more vibrant, just and sustainable cities. We recommend that applicants have at least 3 years of substantive experience related to urban planning or real estate development, or 5+ years of experience in a planning-adjacent field

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Multidisciplinary Curriculum

Take courses on urban economics, real estate project planning, urban design, and data analytics and visualization.

Two On-Campus Intensives

Analyze, propose and evaluate real-world projects during in-person intensives in the living classroom of Los Angeles.

World-Class Faculty

Work with accomplished and experienced faculty who share a deep commitment to sustainable and equitable urban planning.

Experienced Cohort

Network with a uniquely supportive student cohort hailing from a range of professional backgrounds.
EMUP Career Backgrounds

Students come to the Executive Master of Urban Planning degree from diverse career backgrounds in the private, public and nonprofit sectors.

Public Sector and Government Career Backgrounds

  • Mayor of Los Gatos, California
  • Kansas City Planning Commission
  • Santa Clara Housing Authority
  • Houston Parks Board
  • Lake County, Florida
  • Town of Gilbert, Arizona
  • Los Angeles Metro
  • Houston Housing Authority

Private Sector Career Backgrounds

  • Rose City Partners LLC (real estate development)
  • Deloitte Management Consulting
  • Marcus and Millichap (real estate investment)
  • ArchiTexas
  • Waterman Steele Real Estate Advisors
  • Pacific Urbanism
  • Federal Home Loan Bank of Chicago
  • The Howard Hughes Corporation
  • Rodgers Consulting

Nonprofit Career Backgrounds

  • Habitat for Humanity of Greater Los Angeles
  • Detroit Economic Growth Corporation
  • Enterprise Community Fund (affordable housing)
  • C40 Cities (climate change policy)
  • East Los Angeles Community Corporation
  • Sustainable Homes of the Future

Curriculum & Courses

The Executive Master of Urban Planning brings together the typically siloed fields of urban planning, real estate development and public policy—both in theory, and in practice—to create a broad understanding of economic, physical, political and social realities that impact urban environments.

Curriculum & Course Sequence

The Executive Master of Urban Planning program directly bridges the gap between urban planning goals and the objectives and constraints of effective real estate development.

The core curriculum revolves around interconnected themes in four arenas:

  1. Urban economics, citizen participation and governance
  2. Real estate project planning and proforma analysis
  3. Urban design, site analysis and design review
  4. Data analytics and visualization

The content and sequencing of coursework is designed to cultivate leaders who excel at the intersection of all these fields.

The Executive Master of Urban Planning course sequence consists of 24 total units across 4 semesters. Please note the following course sequence is meant as a sample.

Term 1 (7 Total Units)

  • Economics of a Productive Development (3 units)
  • Politics and Processes of Urban Development (2 units)
  • First Intensive (2 units)

Term 2 (5 total units)

  • Urban Political Economy and Urban Development (2 units)
  • Economics for a Productive City (3 units)

Term 3 (7 total units)

  • Effective Engagement with Stakeholders (3 units)
  • Big Data for Planning and Development (2 units)
  • Second Intensive (2 units)

Term 4 (5 total units)

  • Leading a Collaborative City (4 units)
  • Integrating Concepts for Action (1 unit)

For a detailed breakdown of each course, view the Course Descriptions.

In-Person Intensives

USC Price EMUP students are seated on public transit. They are engaged in animated discussion. To complete the Executive Master of Urban Planning online program, you will attend two four-day in-person intensives held at the end of the fall and spring semesters.

During these sessions, which are conducted on the USC University Park Campus in Los Angeles, you will immerse yourself in real urban planning projects, both in Los Angeles and in students’ home cities, and work with your peers and professors to analyze, propose and evaluate projects in a real-world context. A focus on both collaboration and community are key as students learn more about one another and the places they are from.

Student Projects

In the first semester of the Executive Master of Urban Planning program, you will complete an immersive group project, diving into the details of a planning problem. You’ll be challenged to apply your knowledge of urban planning and real estate project analysis to develop solutions to planning and broader governance issues. In teams, you’ll present these projects to a panel of experts as part of the first intensive for real-world feedback.

Past Projects

Projects range widely in geography, scale, and objectives. Past projects have included:

Los Angeles Stadium 
Inglewood, CA
As Inglewood grew around the the expanded Los Angeles Stadium, complex challenges and opportunities arose alongside increased traffic and neighborhood revitalization. Students explored the projected costs and impacts, developed mitigation strategies, and recommended a path forward.

Domino Sugar Refinery
Brooklyn, NY
Students evaluated project costs and strategies for a multi-building, mixed-use project incorporating historic redevelopment alongside new construction and public space.

Wonder Flats and Shops
Kansas City, MO
A retired Wonder Bread factory represented an opportunity to revitalize the community. Students  explored this historic redevelopment project to convert a disused structure into mixed-use, character-filled residential and retail space.

Student Projects


All USC Price candidates must have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university in order to apply. Explore application requirements below.

For information on pending webinars, please email [email protected].

Admissions & Application Requirements

All USC Price candidates must have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university in order to apply. Because this is an executive degree, we prefer applicants who have at least 3 years of substantive experience related to urban planning or real estate development, or 5+ years of experience in a planning-adjacent field. You should highlight that work experience and how it motivates your desire to pursue this degree in your application.

The USC Price Executive Master of Urban Planning online program is currently not authorized for students living in Arkansas, Minnesota, and Puerto Rico. To complete your application, you must submit the following:


Your resume should include a summary of your academic background, your professional work history, and any other relevant work or volunteer experience you’d like to highlight.

Official Transcripts

We recommend that you request transcripts when beginning the application, as the turnaround time can vary from school to school. USC requires official transcripts from all postsecondary schools (Including community colleges) you have attended, regardless of transfers or whether a degree was earned. Your application processing may be delayed if you fail to submit all undergraduate transcripts. Transcript submission is a two-step process:

  1. Upload scanned copies of official registrar-issued transcripts to the online application. Please note that these must be official transcripts printed on university letterhead. Printouts from online student portals are not acceptable.
  2. Request an official registrar-issued transcript be sent to the USC Office of Graduate Admissions.

If your university is in the United States and offers e-transcripts, advise the university to send the e-transcript to [email protected]. The transcript must originate from a secure site formally linked to the sending institution. If your university does not offer e-transcripts or is located outside of the United States, advise the university to send a sealed official transcript.

If sending your transcripts via regular mail,
University of Southern California
USC Office of Graduate Admission
3601 South Flower Street, Room 112
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0915

If sending your transcripts via courier service, such as DHL or FedEx,
University of Southern California
USC Office of Graduate Admission and Financial Aid
3601 South Flower Street, Tyler 112
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0915

Statement of Purpose

Your statement should be approximately 1,000 words. You will be asked to describe your path to USC Price, including what prepared you to succeed in the program and why you chose it. You should describe how your career experience relates to the goals and objectives of the Executive Master of Urban Planning.

Letters of Recommendation

We require two recommendation letters. These should come from professionals in your field who can provide meaningful input on your previous work experience and career goals. A letter of recommendation from a professor, faculty member, and/or academic adviser who can provide meaningful input regarding your academic record is also welcome. Many applicants submit two references from professional contacts.

Application Fee

There is a nonrefundable application fee of $90. USC offers several options for graduate application fee waivers.

International Student Requirements

Please refer to USC’s Office of Graduate Admissions website for additional items required for international students to apply. On this page you will find a comprehensive checklist to complete your application if applying from outside the US.

Tuition & Aid

Explore tuition and fees and learn how to apply for financial aid.

Applying for Financial Aid


The current tuition rate is $2,244 per unit. Students should expect a moderate increase in tuition each academic year.

Credits Required: 24
Estimated Total Tuition: $53,856
New student fee: $50
Student programming: $20 for online students
Norham H. Topping Student Aid Fund fee: $8

Financial Aid

U.S. citizens and permanent residents are eligible to apply for federal student aid. Additionally, some employers may offer tuition benefits, including tuition reimbursement and low-cost loans. The University of Southern California Financial Aid Office (FAO) will provide you with the details of applying for financial aid, understanding your financial aid award and properly securing your loans. Visit the FAO website for detailed information regarding dates and deadlines and to find downloadable forms that are needed to process the financial aid application.

Public Service Loan Forgiveness

Graduates working in the public service field may qualify for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program. To qualify, you must have made 120 qualifying loan payments while employed by a qualifying employer. There is no income requirement for the PSLF program.

EMUP students collaborating with their laptops open in class.

EMUP Student Support

As an online student in the EMUP program, you’ll have access to a variety of supports through USC Price:

  • A dedicated program specialist provides counseling related to academic and administrative policies, monitors student progress, and provides other student services related to academic programming.
  • The Price Office of Career Services connects students who are motivated to solve local and global problems with practitioners who are already working towards those goals.
  • The USC Veterans Certification Office can help you make use of military tuitions benefits such as the GI Bill and Yellow Ribbon benefits up to $5,000. Active-duty military, veterans, spouses and dependents can also request an application fee waiver from the graduate school
Mike Lanza

Alumni Spotlight:
Mike Lanza '21

"For anybody interested in really taking a deeper dive and looking at why things are the way they are in the area that they live, urban planning and the EMUP program at USC is an invaluable experience."
Mike Lanza, Path Ventures
Stefen Chraghchian

Alumni Spotlight:
Stefen Chraghchian '21

"I would definitely recommend the EMUP program to any prospective student if they’re in the field of planning or even if they’re in the finance field, but are looking to go into development or some broader field of real estate where you need to understand multiple disciplines."
—Stefen Craghchian, Associate Director of Capital Markets, Marcus & Millichap
Colin Montoute

Alumni Spotlight:
Colin Montoute '21

"Whether it’s about urban planning, real estate, focusing on good governance – I felt that we all brought something unique to our classes. We all learned from each other and the diverse nature of the class. It’s what the program’s about, to me, and really helps to reveal the importance of what it takes for cities and urban conditions to be successful."
Colin Montoute, Director of Architecture, WXY architecture + urban design
Campus building with red USC Price banners.

Why USC Price?

The Sol Price School of Public Policy is ranked #2 by U.S. News & World Report for urban policy, features faculty who are experts in the field and has an alumni network of more than 16,000 in all 50 states and more than 40 countries.

About USC Price

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