Planner I, City of Brampton
Master in Environmental Studies 2017
"The program taught me the importance of understanding a variety of disciplines within the planning stream to build better cities, communities and neighborhoods."
About Tristan Costa
How would you describe your years at EUC, and did the program prepare you for your career? How?
As a current Planner, the MES/FES Program expanded the breadth of my knowledge in the field of planning. The program taught me the importance of understanding a variety of disciplines within the planning stream to build better cities, communities and neighborhoods.
What’s your favorite/most memorable memory of your time at York University?
Defending my Thesis! It is always fulfilling and rewarding to defend (and be commended) for the work which you dedicate much time and effort to. My focus was on large-scale development projects and mega-events, which was directly aligned with my interest in discovering the cost-benefit analysis of large scale sporting spectacles. I was also blessed to have the support of several professors, who were also great mentors (Teresa Abbruzzese and Liette Gilbert).
Describe your post-graduation journey including experiences such as employment, volunteer work, community engagement projects.
While I was blessed to receive a job offer in my field prior to the completion of my MES degree, there were many roadblocks along the way. Many employers turned me down for my lack of professional work experience, or inability to prove that I have completed my degree. Volunteer experience was pivotal in this scenario, as this experience enabled me to gain the confidence to deliver in an interview setting. These experiences included working as a Heritage Assistant with the Township of King and a Community Outreach Assistant with Brooki Pooni Associates. Both experiences allowed me to engage with planners and gain the hands-on experience I needed to grow as an individual and an urban professional. Experience in the field of planning, along with an interest in community engagement, led me to the current position I am in now.
What is your current job title, or project you are working on, and how would you describe the work you do in a typical day?
I am currently a planner at City of Brampton, working with a team dedicated to community and resiliency. Our main objective is to deliver the 2040 Vision: a bold, new vision for what Brampton could and should be in 2040 and beyond. What makes this Vision special, is that it was created for the people, by the people – over 20,000 Bramptonians have been engaged to date and shared how they would like to see their city grow.
If you could leave current students with a piece of advice, what would it be?
Apply, apply, apply! Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. A good, professional interview goes a long way, whether you have the experience or not. Also, don’t be afraid to take risks, in the professional and education setting.