Are you applying to grad schools this year? The GRE waivers are definitely appealing! It can be intimidating to apply to grad schools after being in the work force for a few years but that’s valuable experience that you’ll be bringing with you!
Here are some considerations to keep in mind while applying to grad schools:
Programs will typically include a look at the courses offered, research opportunities, and faculty leadership. Dig into this to see how the program relates to your interests. Just because you got your bachelors in one field doesn’t mean that’s what you need to go to graduate school for!
Check out who the faculty are and what projects they’re working on. This is also important for getting a sense of the culture, and the support that these potential mentors will offer!
First off – do you want to do research? Not all grad school will have a research focus. There’s plenty of professional programs out there that won’t require a thesis, but make sure you’re applying to the programs that suit your interests! If you are looking to do research, reach out to faculty to see what projects they’re working on that you might be interested in.
While there are funding opportunities for some degrees, the cost of grad school is still a big consideration. If you’ve been out of school a few years, the need-based financial aid is going to look a lot different and grants can come in handy. See what scholarships, work study programs, and funding opportunities the program has. Another consideration will be the cost of living – if you aren’t working during grad school and paying money for tuition, remember that you still need to budget for rent, food, and travel!
Continuing off cost of living, the location matters! When applying to schools, ask yourself if you’re really willing to live for 2-8 years in this location. Do you prefer big cities? Maybe that remote rural program isn’t going to make you happy 👀 If your have a family, relocation can be hard! Even if a school has the absolute best program, if you aren’t willing to live there it doesn’t matter. Don’t let anyone make you feel bad for not wanting to relocate!
Are you planning to do grad school full time or will you still be working? Be sure to check into the flexibility of programs if you’re planning to study part-time, and some schools even offer distance learning! Flexible classes will help you establish a healthy work/school balance.
Keep an eye out for more grad school application resources, coming soon!