Planner-in-Residence: Ms. Michelle Nance, FAICP

Michelle receiving alumni award

  • Full name:  Michelle E. Nance, FAICP
  • Pronouns: She/her/hers
  • Current title/positionDeputy Executive Director, Centralina Regional Council; Served as Planning Director for 10 years at Centralina after serving as Planning Director in Gastonia, NC.
  • Hometown:  Mount Holly, NC
  • Hobbies:  Surf fishing at the Outer Banks, planting flowers, reading mysteries and history, live music and dancing, supporting my kid’s after-school activities
  • Colleges attended and degrees:  East Carolina University B.S. Urban and Regional Planning (1993), Master of Public Administration (1995), UNC Charlotte Certificate in Design Thinking (2021)
  • First full-time job:  Planning Technician, City of High Point, NC
  • Specializations:  Land Use Planning, Regional Planning, Healthy Communities, Transportation and Transit Planning, Stakeholder and Community Engagement
  • Years at ECU: Planner-in-Residence (Professor in Practice) since 2022
  • Your courses at ECU:
    • PLAN 6040: Community Facilities and Capital Budgeting (graduate course. Online)
    • PLAN 4040: Community Facilities Planning
    • PLAN 6032: Administrative and Legislative Aspects of Planning
  • Advice for students:  Use every opportunity to practice public speaking and always ask yourself, “who is the audience, and what is the purpose?” Early in your career, especially, show your willingness to take on additional responsibilities.  Most planning work is done in teams, so be the person that everyone wants on the team.  Learn the art of active listening and trust the planning process and where it takes you instead of having it all figured out in the beginning.
  • What I love about the department/program:  I love the Pirate pride exhibited by students and alumni.  This program graduates students that understand how communities work and the connections between the physical and social infrastructure.  I look forward to being part of that tradition, supporting the practical application of planning practices to create vibrant communities.