APA Student Representatives Council
Outstanding Planning Student Organization (PSO) Awards
The application window is now closed for the 2014 Outstanding PSO Award. The jury is currently reviewing the applications. Schools will be notified in mid-March 2014.
Thank you to this year's sponsoring APA Divisions, including the County Planning Division, the Housing and Community Development Division, the Transportation Planning Division and the Urban Design and Preservation Division.
About the Awards
Planning Student Organizations (PSOs) throughout the country are involved in exciting and creative activities that enliven student life, contribute to their communities, and provide enhanced educational experiences for the students. This awards program provides a means for student groups to share their ideas, learn from one another, and receive recognition (and rewards!) for creative, successful activities.
The APA Student Representatives Council (SRC) Executive Committee designed this awards program to:
- promote students' volunteer involvement in their student organization, communities, and state chapters;
- recognize the outstanding efforts of these student groups;
- identify best practices in student organizations; and
- strengthen the ties between student organizations and the American Planning Association
Awards in each category will include a monetary contribution to school's PSO to fund its activities. Funding is provided by APA divisions. The award will be presented during the annual APA National Planning Conference.
Only APA-registered PSOs with a qualified (APA member) Student Representative will be eligible for this awards program to submit projects, activities and events implemented during the previous and current academic years (August 1, 2012, to deadline).
Entry must be a PSO-sponsored project or program; individual, class, or planning program projects are not eligible.
Within each category, the jury will consider:
- Support of planning: How the activity/project supports planning, the planning movement, or planning students
- Contribution: How the student group, community, or chapter benefited from the activity/project
- Innovation: Innovative use of existing or newly created opportunities (e.g., collaborating with another group/organization; addressing a specific need or emerging planning issue (i.e., sustainability, Smart Growth, etc.), etc.
Don't limit your thinking to the lists below each category. These are simply suggestions and examples just to get you thinking in new directions. The jury may use its discretion to move an entry to another category.
Involvement with State Chapter
Fostering student involvement with state/regional APA chapter
- Use Chapter leaders and members as speakers/participants in PSO programming (new student orientations, meeting and mentorship programs, brown bag lunches, etc.)
- Involve student volunteers in Chapter activities and programs
- Advocate for student representation on Chapter committees or board
- Develop student contributions to Chapter newsletters, conference sessions, etc.
- Promote student participation in Chapter meetings/events
Encouraging student volunteerism in the community
- Projects – community gardens, transforming vacant lots, working with K-12 students, etc.
- City government
- Neighborhood organizations and other non-governmental agencies
Planning and implementing interesting, creative, and successful PSO programs and activities
- Programming (speakers at monthly meetings, career panels, etc.)
- Mentorship programs
- School involvement – curriculum review, certification process, etc.
Planning and implementing activities to increase student and community awareness of planning
The jury will be chaired by the SRC Immediate Past Chair
- Divisions: A representative from each sponsoring division
- PSO Student Representatives (3 to 5)
Committee members will recuse themselves as judges from any category in which their school has submitted an entry.
Award / Recognition
- Monetary Award to PSO (funding from Sponsoring Divisions) and plaque presented during APA/AICP Meeting/Award Ceremony
- Student Exchange and SRC Business Meeting
- APA's Interact e-newsletter
- The New Planner
- APA website