University of Cincinnati - School of Planning

Why you should consider this program

The University of Cincinnati (UC) invites 2 - 4 Coverdell Fellows each year to develop their valuable Peace Corps experiences into something even greater. This is done through a full-time summer Co-op, a part-time internship, & a Peace Corps Practicum.

The school offers a diverse learning environment & produces graduates with the credentials to practice as professional urban planners, both domestically & overseas. Planetizen has ranked the graduate programs in the School of Planning 1st of the top small programs, 4th in the Midwest & 20th in the nation.

UC’s School of Planning is the only planning school offering bachelor's, master's, & doctoral degrees with the integration of co-op work experience. UC ranks No. 3 among the nation's elite institutions for co-op & internships for 2020. Among public universities, UC is No. 1 in the nation, higher than Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

As the global founder of cooperative education, UC welcomes students who want to directly apply their passion for peoples’ capacity-building in a city with a wide variety of urban neighborhoods, each with its own unique character & challenges. Cincinnati offers planning students urgent issues to help observe, solve & anticipate—all with guidance from planning professors with experience in working abroad.

Pricing below reflects the cost of the MCP degree. For financial information related to the Joint MCP-JD or PhD, please email Dr. Looye.

Benefits for Coverdell Fellows

Tuition/fees for Complete Program Value of Coverdell Fellowship Net cost *
In state $ 33,344 $ 27,795 $ 5,549
Out of state $ 64,940 $ 27,795 $ 37,145
* Net cost is equal to tuition/fees minus fellowship value. For some universities, the fellowship value includes non-tuition/fee benefits such as health insurance or housing—see the first point below for more details.

Where the cost savings value of the Coverdell Fellowship comes from

  • Tuition Coverage from 25% to 100% based on merit plus additional benefits.
  • Students work with a faculty that has extensive overseas experience, including two Returned Peace Corps Volunteers, & study a curriculum with core courses, specialization courses, electives, & summer co-op, all accredited by the Planning Accreditation Board. Participating students also enroll in a Paul D. Coverdell seminar with local speakers & different service projects each semester. Fellows are placed with nonprofit planning organizations & city & county government agencies throughout the Greater Cincinnati region. Fellows work with underserved populations that reflect their academic & professional interests.
  • Some non-Ohio residents may qualify metropolitan tuition rates based on their program, county of residence and application approval. Second-year master's students are usually able to pay in-state tuition, if they can prove residence bringing the total net cost to $15,883.
  • Optional Health Premium Rates not included: Single Student Coverage: $1,837 per semester. The Graduate Student Health Insurance (GSHI) award covering free health care is offered with the graduate assistant position.
  • Tuition is awarded competitively with entire applicant pool. Students receive between 25% and 100% support. The numbers shown reflect 25% tuition covered. Coverdell Internship pay is equivalent to departmental graduate assistantship pay and is estimated at either 10 hours/week or 20 hours/week for both years.
  • Net cost is equal to tuition/fees minus fellowship value. For some universities, the fellowship value includes non-tuition/fee benefits such as health insurance or housing

Fellowships awarded per year (average)


Annual cost of living (estimated)

$ 22,984

Application fee waived?



Internships are practical steps RPCVs take to apply their service to a community in the US. They are designed to pair well with the students’ passions for planning & benefiting underserved populations. Internships are found for the student by the Coverdell Fellows Advisor after consulting the student’s application materials. During the Summer semester, students take a co-op position, typically 40 hours per week. Co-op faculty provide immense assistance to students in getting their co-op of choice. During the school year, Fellows typically work 20 hours per week or 10 hours a week, either as a graduate assistant, an intern, or a combination of the two. Fellows earn approximately $11.532 per academic year for 20-hour positions.

In recent years, we have had students working in the following agencies: Communities United for Action, Groundwork Cincinnati, Green Umbrella, The Center for Great Neighborhoods, Over-The-Rhine Community Housing, Smart Money, & more.

Jobs for program alumni

Previous Coverdell Fellows have held the following jobs after graduation: Urban & Regional Planner for the New Mexico State Land Office; Environmental Scientist & GIS Specialist for AECOM; Community & Economic Development Planner for the Oregon Cascades West Council of Governments; Watershed Coordinator for the Mill Creek Restoration Project (now Groundwork Cincinnati).

Other details

Program length

2 years

Application requirements

  • Official transcripts from all undergraduate (+ graduate coursework for PhD)
  • GRE scores - optional
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Digital Résumé
  • Signed Description of Service (DOS)
  • Motivation Statement explaining interest in the Coverdell Fellows Program

Admissions process

Check box if you are applying as a Coverdell Fellow. There is an additional statement of intent to be sent to the Coordinator for your interest in the Coverdell Fellows Program. You should also submit your DOS.

Program begins

Mid August

Year Coverdell Fellows partnership started



Johanna Looye, Associate Professor

School of Planning/ College of DAAP University of Cincinnati
P.O. Box 210016
Cincinnati, OH 45221-0016