Yesterday (May 1, 2010) marked the celebration of 40 years of urban planning at UCLA. The day started off with a panel discussion on the history of the program. Panelists included professors and distinguished students from all decades of the program (see the full list below). Professor John Friedman (the first chair of the program) and Stanley Hoffman (from the first graduating class in 1972) were there. Mr. Hoffman pointed out that there were only 17 students in the graduating class of '72, now we have over 60 each year. In total, 2,500 students have graduated from the program over the years.
The day continued with a great speech and discussion from distinguished graduate Cecilia Estolano. She outlined a plan for progressive economic development that includes higher paying green jobs.
After closing remarks from Professor Anastasia Loukaitou-Sideris the event moved on to the reception and dinner. Activities included a funny and well done musical performance by current students Dan Caroselli, Lindsey Hilde, and Madeline Brozen; with lyrics from D. Gregg Doyle. A game show spin on the Price is Right, complete with a showcase showdown was hosted by current students Jeremy Cogan, Caroline Park, and Michele Go.
The evening ended with an Alumni video (youtube link to be posted soon) and a special tribute to retiring Professor Robin Liggett. By Professor Donald Shoup's calculations, Robin has taught the most planning students of any professor in the country. She teaches the two required quantitative courses in the program, which consist of almost the entire incoming class of students each year. Even though Robin is retiring from the department, she will continue to teach her classes for the years to come.