Student Q&A: Shani Carter (MUP ’16)

Shani CarterHometown

Raleigh, NC

Undergraduate school/major

Howard University School of Business, Finance major

What was your work experience/background before coming to the GSD?

I worked as a senior analyst at Goldman Sachs Asset Management for three years after graduating from Howard.

Why did you decide to pursue planning as a career?

I liked my old job but wanted to build a career more closely related to my passion – empowering communities. There are many avenues to achieving that goal, but for me planning provided a skill set and a focus I did not already have. Its study is grounded in the built environment, combining aspects of both policy and design.

What made you decide to come to the GSD?

The students. I visited a lot of schools and met with a lot of students, but it was only at the GSD that I truly felt at home. Everyone is extremely smart but down to earth. It’s been a pleasure to surround myself with so many people who are also passionate about improving cities.

What are your main interests in planning and concentration area?

I’m mostly interested in real estate and community development. As far as career ambitions, I’d like to be able to dedicate my time to initiatives that advance local ownership and control over neighborhood development.

Are you involved in any student groups? What have you gained from the experience?

I’ve gotten pretty involved at the GSD and in the greater Harvard community in a short amount of time. I’m currently the VP of Events for Student Forum, an Editor for the Harvard Journal of Real Estate, and Treasurer of the African-American Student Union. I was also fortunate enough to get involved with planning this year’s Real Estate Conference co-hosted by Harvard Business School.

What has been your favorite class or project? Why?

I love all of my classes! I think travelling to Berlin with my Global Leadership in Real Estate and Design course takes the cake though.