The Department of Urban and Regional Planning is proud to announce that we are offering six scholarships for first time Master of Arts fall 2020 applicants.  You must have a completed application packet on the Division of Graduate Studies web portal and also meet department criteria in order to qualify.

We look forward to hearing from each of you as you embark upon a journey in becoming an urban planner.  The website to start your application is:

About DURP@JSU.pptx 6-22-2020

For more information about the application process and scholarship, contact Lisa Johnson at (601) 979-8725 or by email at  Thank you for choosing Jackson State University!

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The Department of Urban and Regional Planning at Jackson State University, with funding from Title III, is offering two part-time Graduate Assistantships at $12,000 each per year.  One position is being offered at the master's level and one at the doctoral level.  Applicants are required to either be first-year students or in the process of applying to the master or doctoral program in Urban and Regional Planning.  Recipients will be required to work 20 hours per week in the department.

To be given full consideration, applicants must submit the following documents to Dr. Talya Thomas, Awards Committee Chair, no later than January 24, 2020.

1.  A completed scholarship application form found at
2.  An application letter documenting financial need
3.  Resume or CV
4.  Unofficial transcript
5.  One letter of recommendation

Please send the above-required documents to  She may be contacted at (601) 979-8727 for questions.


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October is National Community Planning Month

September 27th, 2019 by jsudurp

Since 2006, the American Planning Association has selected the month of October to bring awareness and attention to the importance of planners in neighborhoods.  This year's theme is. "Planning for infrastructure that benefits all" which includes roadways, transportation systems, parks, and broadband networks.  The Department of Urban and Regional Planning at Jackson State University is ready to host several events in celebration of this great month. 

Tuesday, October 1st– Reading of Proclamation declaring October as Planning Month in Jackson presented by the mayor and Jackson City Council
City Hall, 219 South President Street, downtown Jackson


Tuesday, October 15th-Brown Bag Discussion Panel
11:30 a.m. -12-noon lunch, Panel Discussion starts at 12- noon
101 W. Capitol Street, JSU Downtown

Wednesday-Friday, October 16th-18th APA AL/MS Conference in Huntsville, AL

DURP student, Kirk Williams, and the planning students from Auburn University

Dr. Demetra Bates, DURP Ph.D. alumna; Willie Jones, DURP MA alumnus; and Dr. Talya D. Thomas, DURP associate professor

Muhammed Alrefi, DURP Ph.D. student and Judith Oppong, DURP Ph.D. student

Tuesday, October 22nd-Open House-This is an opportunity to come to obtain information about the planning field and degree programs offered.
101 W. Capitol Street, JSU Downtown


Tuesday, October 29th-DURP Alumni Night Out-All DURP alumni, faculty, staff, students, community partners, and JSU family are invited for a night of networking.

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Jazz Series in June ready for entertaining

June 24th, 2019 by jsudurp


The College of Public Service is ready to host our Monthly Jazz Series with the Dowell Taylor Quintet and emcee, Pam Confer.  We welcome all who have an interest in hearing a great musical showcase along with an ambiance of enjoying the presence of wonderful people.  This event is free and open to the public!

Time:  5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Place:  101 W. Capitol Street Center


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Mitchell Lloyd becomes AICP Certified!

June 11th, 2019 by jsudurp

The Department of Urban and Regional Planning congratulates one of our alumnus on passing the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) examination.  Mitchell Lloyd received his Master of Arts degree in Urban and Regional Planning from Jackson State University and his Bachelor of Science degree in Architectural Engineering Technology from The University of Southern Mississippi.  He brought enthusiasm and architectural knowledge during his matriculation in the program and continues to excel professionally in the planning field.

AICP is the only nationwide, independent verification of planners qualifications.  Members of this organization pledge to uphold high standards of practice and stay current with their professional knowledge.

Mitchell is presently employed as a Senior Transportation Planner in the Project Development Division of Seattle, Washington's Department of Transportation.

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The question of where the funds from the 1% sales tax were addressed by Giahanna Bridges, MA student.  She focused her research on how the money is allocated within the City of Jackson during the 2016 timeframe since that was the most recent data available. Her findings also showed that infrastructure issues continue to be a priority for the current city's administration to address.  An attentive audience was present and asked a lot of questions for Giahanna while her internship site supervisor, Dr. Sam Mozee, interim director of the Mississippi Urban Research Center (MURC) facilitated the presentation.  

Also in attendance was Dr. Joan M. Wesley, DURP interim chair and associate professor, Dr. Talya D. Thomas, DURP assistant professor and internship coordinator, DURP staff and students, MURC staff, and family and friends of Giahanna.  

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What do you do when you have a lot of questions and need just as many answers?  Well, one can attend a doctoral workshop sponsored by the Department of Urban and Regional Planning hosted on Tuesday, October 30, 2018 at 5:30 p.m.    This event was the last in the month of activities as part of Planning Month.  Both doctoral and masters students were in the audience at the 101 W. Capitol Street Building at the JSU Downtown Campus to hear what new procedures and processes are a part of the matriculation. Shalonda Carlisle, a DURP doctoral candidate, served as the facilitator for the program.

There were two panels assembled for the workshop.  The first panel was comprised of key Jackson State University staff persons who are great resources in the overall completion process.  First, Mrs. Darlita Ballard, university and digital archivist from the Division of Library and Information Resource spoke about the binding of the dissertation/thesis.  Next, there was Dr. Kathi Griffin, director, of the Richard Wright Center, and last was Ms. Fatouma Sisay, senior program manager of the Division of Graduate Studies. Students were encouraged to be timely with their paperwork submissions and maintain communication with their advisor.  Additionally, the Richard Wright Center was a great place to help choose a topic for research and participate in their Roundtable Discussions.

DURP alumni doctoral graduates comprised of the second panel discussion. Dr. Joan Blanton, AICP and Dr. Jasmine Williams-Washington are both DURP visiting assistant professors along with Dr. Charles Husband, provided first-hand information of what current doctoral students should expect as part of their personal and professional journey.


Shown left to right:  Dr. Talya D. Thomas, DURP assistant professor, Dr. Joan Blanton, AICP, DURP visiting assistant professor, Dr. Jasmine Williams-Washington, DURP visiting assistant professor, Shalonda Carlisle, DURP doctoral candidate, and Dr. Charles Husband, manager, Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT)

Ms. Fatouma Sisay, senior program manager, JSU Division of Graduate Studies


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