Alumni Profiles

Nazanin Esmaeili

With over a decade of work experience, Nazanin began her Urban Studies journey as no stranger to urban planning. Originally from Iran, Nazanin earned her Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees in city/urban, community and regional planning from Yazd University and Azad University, respectively. Based on a friend’s recommendation, Nazanin entered the Urban Studies Program, while immersing herself into her new home of Vancouver.

The Graduate Diploma in Urban Studies allowed Nazanin to gain new perspectives on cities. She looks back on courses with instructor Paddy Smith as enlightening and informative. She says: “I found the course offerings to be immersive and I liked that I was able to actually step into city hall to learn about the workings of Canadian municipalities with a hands-on approach.”

“In particular, I really enjoyed the Urban Studies courses that focus on Metro Vancouver. As someone who was new to the city, they were the perfect introduction. I started to get accustomed to the city and was able to utilize my transferrable urban planning skills and put my experience into Canadian context.”

The Urban Studies Program gave Nazanin newfound knowledge and understanding of Metro Vancouver, which she continues to call home and where she currently works. As a planning assistant for the City of New Westminster, she responds to planning and development inquiries and works in a team with other highly skilled urban planners on neighbourhood and community plans in processes, which involve extensive research.

“Compared to Tehran with a population of over 8.5 million, I find Metro Vancouver to be more accessible and there are more opportunities to be a part of the developmental process at a municipal level,” says Nazanin.

Connect with Nazanin on LinkedIn.