During this week’s Graduate Awareness Week, the university’s graduate schools invited students to learn about post-graduation options.
Because we all want more school, right?
At this point of the semester, any more school after a bachelor’s degree may seem overwhelming, but for some students, graduate school could be a practical next step before entering the “real world.”
You might be wondering if attending grad school has any real benefit to you, but to answer that question, you must consider your own professional ambitions. How far up the ladder are you trying to go?
For those in fields like accounting, engineering, and pre-med, there’s no question graduate school is important. Accounting, finance, business, engineering or any hard science major knows these majors require at least a master’s degree in order to get a good job after graduation.
But don’t exclude yourself if you’re not one of those majors. If you’re an English major and want to become a professor, you need a graduate degree. If you’re a journalism major and want to work at the New York Times, you need a graduate degree. If you’re an art major and want to illustrate bestselling book covers, you need a graduate degree.
There are those who say attending a graduate school is basically throwing away your money, a waste of time or just another way to buy time if you’re unsure about your next move. However, the benefits to attending a graduate school greatly outnumber the reasons to not attend. The possibility of having a better job, a higher salary and more educational opportunities can make it worthwhile.
Some people view graduate school as avoiding the “adult world” by staying in school longer. But we aren’t saying you should study forever. Carol B. Lynch, director of professional master’s programs at the Council of Graduate Schools. “At some point you need to get out of the library and out into the real world. If you are not giving people the skills to do that, we are not doing our job.”
If this sounds like a big step for you, ACU has programs like the McNair Scholars Program which helps students get into graduate school even if it’s not expected of them. Through tutorials, guidance, classes and undergraduate research opportunities, McNair helps students of all majors and classifications meet graduate school qualifications. Many professors are willing to help you prepare for graduate school.
So do you want to go through with it? Are you willing to pay a higher tuition rate, possible moving expenses and spend three or more years in school? If so, we suggest that you go through with it. However, if you do not feel the need to climb up the corporate ladder by spending thousands of dollars on classes, then please do not waste your time.
It comes down to your goals. Are you willing to submerge yourself under piles of work and research all in the name of a master’s degree? If so, good luck.