American Citizen Planner Program Registration Open and Webinar Planned

The American Citizen Planner (ACP) program is now accepting registrations for its two courses and the national examination.

The ACP program provides training in core competencies for volunteer public planning officials. The online training program is designed to help those serving on planning commissions as well as other citizen volunteers interested in land use planning understand the roles and responsibilities of public officials, community residents and developers and understand the tools and processes planners used to implement comprehensive plans.

Often, the individuals on these public boards are charged with making decisions on the direction of their communities that have a profound impact. However, there is very little training available to prepare them for the magnitude of their tasks.

The American Citizen Planner program features two courses of ACP 101 (Planning) and ACP 201 (Zoning). The courses feature a combined 28 units (up to one hour each) of online content detailing core planning theories, tools, and legal aspects that shape community plans. Participants who complete both courses can take the ACP Exam to earn the Master Citizen Planner credential.

For general information about the program, click here to visit the ACP webpage.

To register for the national American Citizen Planner program, click here to visit ACP Registration.

For more information about the courses, contact Wayne Beyea, JD, AICP, Senior Specialist, Urban & Regional Planning, Michigan State University, School of Planning, Design and Construction. Click here to email Wayne.

Webinar Information

There will be a free webinar on Tuesday, May 12 at 3 p.m. EDT (UTC-4) to provide an overview of the program. It will be taught by Kara Salazar, AICP, PCED, LEED AP NC of Purdue University and Wayne Beyea, JD, AICP, of Michigan State University. The two have been instrumental in the creation of the ACP curriculum and making the program available nationally. To register for the webinar, click here for the webinar website.

“The American Citizen Planner builds on 15 years of online training experience for thousands of local planning officials,” said Beyea, a senior specialist with Michigan State University who has been involved in this effort for over a decade. “It is the most comprehensive online training program available in the nation. There are over a million elected and appointed planning officials nationwide who make important decisions every day. The ACP core competency training coupled with the ACP exam is a proven resource resulting in measurable community development impacts as reported by past participants.”

States also have the option of creating their own educational programs as part of this program by working with eXtension. Presently, Michigan and Indiana have their own state versions launched already.

The ACP program is a collaboration between the Land Use Planning Community of Practice, the eXtension Foundation and the National Association of Community Development Extension Professionals.

For more information about the webinar, contact Neal Fogle, Extension Educator, Community and Economic Development, Penn State Extension. Click here to email Neal.

For more information, visit

posted on 04-24-2020 by Dougherty

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