Graduate School Prep
How many Emory & Henry College students go directly into graduate school? The answer is 33%.
Thinking about graduate school?
If so, take some time to explore your options, get organized, and make a game plan for applying. A good way to get started is to ask yourself the following questions:
1. Why do I want to go to graduate school?
If your answer is, “I’m going to go to graduate school because I don’t know what to do with my life after I graduate from undergrad,” then you need to step back and reevaluate. Graduate school is not the place for career exploration, it is the next step in your academic career and is a means to an end. In other words, there are some careers that will require a graduate degree, so know what careers you are interested in, and if they require a master’s or doctoral degree, then you know you need to pursue graduate education. To learn more about careers by major and to conduct career research visit the Career Exploration site linked here.
2. I know what I want to study in graduate school, but I don’t know where to find schools that offer this program. Where can I look?
There are quite a few web sites out there designed to provide links to graduate schools/programs by academic area. We will list two sites below that we have found helpful:
GradSchools.com The #1 graduate school directory in the nation. (GradSchools.com)
Peterson’s.com Peterson’s comprehensive online college search guide helps students discover their best fit educational program. We’ve got them all—and we’ll help you sort through your options and provide advice on the often confusing college application process. (Petersons.com)
3. What’s the difference between a GRE, GMAT, MCAT, and LSAT?
It does seem like alphabet soup, but most graduate schools in the admissions process are going to require applicants to complete a graduate exam, which can be a GRE, GMAT, LSAT, or MCAT just to name a few. What exam you register for and take is dependent upon the program you apply to. For complete details on each test, visit their respective sites:
- GRE-Graduate Record Examinations
- GMAT-Graduate Management Admission Test
- MCAT-Medical College Admission Test
- LSAT-Law School Admission Test
- PCAT-Pharmacy College Admission Test
4. Part of my graduate school application asks me to submit a personal statement? What in the world is a personal statement?
In its most simplest form, a personal statement is just that…a statement that is personal. For graduate school admissions purposes, the personal statement lets the school know how you got to the point of applying to graduate school, and, in particular, the specific school and program you are applying to. I like to tell individuals that when it comes to the personal statement they should think about their “aha” moment, which is the moment they decided this career path, and, subsequently, this graduate school or program, was their next step. Personal statements should not be your resume in narrative format, but rather, should be a well written essay that explains to the reader your passion, skills, and experience as it relates to this next step in your career. Sometimes you will simply be asked to complete a personal statement, and other times, you will be given prompts or questions to address in the personal statement. To learn more about personal statements and to read some examples, please see this Personal Statement informational web site maintained by Virginia Tech’s Career Services office.
5. What’s the difference between a Resume and a CV (Curriculum Vitae)?
In a nutshell, a resume is more of a snapshot document, which means it is simply going to express the basics of your experience and education as it relates to a particular job or opportunity. A CV is a more in depth academic document and will be longer and will go into more detail not only about your experience and education, but about all of your academic pursuits and interests. To learn more and to see examples, visit the Resume/CV section of the career services web site linked here.
6. Is there a timeline for applying to graduate school that I should be thinking about?
If you are planning to begin graduate school immediately following the completion of your undergraduate program, then the optimal time to get started is your junior year. This would be the time to begin to narrow down your graduate school choices and begin research on each school and program requirements, including application deadlines. Some schools have rolling admission dates, which means they will accept applications for admission up until the start of classes, but other schools have very strict, and in some cases, very early application deadlines.
7. I’d like to sit down with someone to help me make a game plan for applying to graduate school. Where can I go for help?
Career services at Emory & Henry College is here to help! Take a moment to complete the appointment request form linked here, and you will receive an e-mail back with an appointment confirmation within 48 hours.
Sampling of graduate schools Emory & Henry College alumni have attended: