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Career and Education Opportunities for Community Planners in Cary, North Carolina

If you want to be a community planner, the Cary, North Carolina area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. There are currently 440 working community planners in North Carolina; this should grow by 24% to 550 working community planners in the state by 2016. This is better than the national trend for community planners, which sees this job pool growing by about 17.8% over the next eight years. In general, community planners compile data from various sources, such as maps, reports, and field and file investigations, for use by city planner in making planning studies.

A person working as a community planner can expect to earn about $15 per hour or $32,540 annually on average in North Carolina and about $17 per hour or $35,650 yearly on average in the U.S. as a whole. Earnings for community planners are the same as earnings in the general category of Social Science Technical in North Carolina and the same as general Social Science Technical category earnings nationally. People working as community planners can fill a number of jobs, such as: development and housing director, transportation planner, and development technician.

The Cary area is home to twenty-seven schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Cary where you can get a degree as a community planner. Community planners usually hold a Master's degree, so you can expect to spend about six years studying to be a community planner if you already have a high school diploma, or just 2 years starting with a Bachelor's degree.


In general, community planners compile data from various sources, such as maps, reports, and field and file investigations, for use by city planner in making planning studies.

Community planners participate in and support team planning efforts. They also ready reports, using statistics, charts, and graphs, to illustrate planning studies in areas such as population or zoning. Equally important, community planners have to ready, maintain and update files and records, including land use data and statistics. They are often called upon to conduct interviews, surveys and site inspections concerning factors that affect land usage. They are expected to ready, design and maintain maps and databases. Finally, community planners furnish and process zoning and project permits and applications.

Every day, community planners are expected to be able to listen to and understand others in meetings. They need to articulate ideas and problems.

They also have to be able to research, compile, analyze and organize data from maps and books for use in reports and special projects and serve as liaisons between planning departments and other departments and agencies. And finally, they sometimes have to inspect sites and review plans for minor development permit applications.

Like many other jobs, community planners must have exceptional integrity and be thorough and dependable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Cary include:

  • Geographic Information Systems Analyst. Study nature and use of areas of earth's surface, relating and interpreting interactions of physical and cultural phenomena. Conduct research on physical aspects of a region, including land forms, climates, soils, plants and animals, and conduct research on the spatial implications of human activities within a given area, including social characteristics, economic activities, and political organization, as well as researching interdependence between regions at scales ranging from local to global.
  • Social Research Assistant. Assist social scientists in laboratory, survey, and other social research. May perform publication activities, laboratory analysis, or data management. Normally these individuals work under the direct supervision of a social scientist and assist in those activities which are more routine.


Campbell University Inc - Buies Creek, NC

Campbell University Inc, 450 Leslie Campbell Ave, Buies Creek, NC 27506. Campbell University Inc is a medium sized university located in Buies Creek, North Carolina. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 6,075 students and an admission rate of 60%. Campbell University Inc has a bachelor's degree program in Social Sciences.


Certified GIS/LIS Technologist: This is certification is for technicians who integrate a variety of spatial data sets into a GIS format designed for graphic output or analysis.

For more information, see the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing - Imaging & Geospatial Information Society website.


Cary, North Carolina
Cary, North Carolina photo by Erich_Fabricius

Cary is situated in Wake County, North Carolina. It has a population of over 129,545, which has grown by 37.0% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Cary, 86, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Cary are priced at $204,400 on average, which is well above the state average. In 2008, 1,313 new homes were built in Cary, down from 2,326 the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Cary are professional, scientific, and technical services, educational services, and health care. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, computer and electronic products, and construction. The average commute to work is about 23 minutes. More than 60.7% of Cary residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 23.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Cary is 6.2%, which is less than North Carolina's average of 10.6%.

The percentage of Cary residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 43.8%, is less than both the national and state average. The largest religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the Catholic Church and the United Methodist Church.

Cary is home to Hemlock Bluffs State Natural Area and Regency Park. Visitors to Cary can choose from Hampton Inn Cary, Embassy Suites Hotel Raleigh-Durham and Hampton Inn & Suites for temporary stays in the area.