Students and alumni benefit from the well-established alumni network that supports the School and its students to improve planning education and the professional planning community.
Toronto area alumni help students by raising funds for the planner-in-residence program, scholarships, and an endowment fund. These initiatives enhance and enrich the student experience at Waterloo's School of Planning.
The Planner-in-residence program was initiated in 1990 to improve students' understanding of the planning practice by complementing academic work with opportunities to learn from practioners. The program is funded primarily by the fund-raising initiatives of the Planning Alumni of Toronto.
Annual alumni dinners
Toronto area alumni bring together the planning and development community through an annual fundraising dinner held at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel in Toronto. This annual event attracts high quality, internationally known speakers and is attended by nearly 1,000 people including planners, lawyers, engineers, architects, builders, and developers. It is the largest gathering of its kind in Canada.
These dinners present a unique opportunity for those interested in the planning profession to discuss and learn about diverse issues related to land use change and urban development. Students that attend this annual event find it a rewarding experience as they make contact with leaders of the profession and potential future employers.
Alumni dinner speakers
The speakers at recent Toronto Planning Dinners have included:
- Brent Toderian, Director of City Planning, City of Vancouver
- Joel Kotkin, Irvine Senior Fellow, New America Foundation, Washington, D.C.
- Andrew Altmori, Director, Office of Planning, Washington, D.C.
- Larry Beasley, Director of Current Planning, City of Vancouver, B.C.
- Helmut John, Murphy/John Architects Ltd., Berlin, Germany
- Alicia Berg, Commissioner of Planning, Chicago, Illinois.
Young Alumni Pre-Dinner Social
The Young Alumni Pre-Dinner Social is an annual event by the University of Waterloo Planning Alumni of Toronto held in conjunction with the Annual Toronto Dinner in November of each year. The Young Alumni Pre-Dinner Social provides an opportunity for recent University of Waterloo Planning graduates and students nearing graduation to network with each other, planning professionals and industry leaders in an informal but professional setting.