Recent Graduates and New Professionals

Congratulations! You've earned your degree and entered the world of practicing planners. Look forward to both exhilaration and challenge as you apply your skills and training to benefit your community.

APA's Early Career Program still has your back, offering programs and resources to keep you well informed, closely connected, and moving ahead in your new profession.

Career resources

If you're looking for a job, keep an eye on APA's Jobs Online — employers' go-to site for listing open planning positions. Up to 100 or more positions are listed every day and many of them are for planners who are just beginning or in the very early stages of their careers.

Only APA members may take advantage of our online resume-posting service. Put your credentials out there for employers who search resumes posted in Jobs Online for their perfect new hire.

APA offers lots of career help for new professionals at the annual National Planning Conference. You can work with employment experts to polish your resume, match up with a motivated mentor, and spend an afternoon "speed dating" with veteran planners. Because you're in APA's Early Career Program, the conference registration fee is extra-low.

Network, network, network

The National Planning Conference is the biggest networking event of the year for new and experienced planners alike. But there are lots of other opportunities to make connections through APA. Go to your chapter's annual conference and take an active part in other chapter events. If your chapter has a Young Planners Group, join in; if not, help to create one. Do you have a planning passion? Share it with colleagues from near and far in one of APA's special-interest divisions.

Find your chapter

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Get on the path to certification

AICPOnly APA members may earn certification by the American Institute of Certified Planners. The AICP credential is a unique, nationwide, independent verification of a planner's qualifications. Certified planners commit to continuing education, professional development, and ethical performance. Not only can AICP membership open many doors to planning career success, it also has one very tangible benefit: APA's most recent salary survey results show that even when we account for experience, AICP members earn higher salaries across the board.

Set your sights on certification and APA will help you get there.