Fall Blog Series:
From Undergrad to Grad:
This fall we’re asking some of our second-year students about their experience going to graduate school right after completing their undergraduate degrees. We hope their answers will be helpful for anyone taking the journey towards graduate school.
This week we asked:
Any advice for people who want to apply while they are in school?
I recommend taking a step back and asking yourself if you have enough “real-world” experience that you feel prepared for graduate school and beyond. When I did this, I personally felt like I wanted the opportunity to work full-time in a position that provided me with experience and skills related to genetic counseling before starting graduate school. I made the decision to graduate from undergrad a semester early so I could have that opportunity.
I recommend working on your personal statement over the summer, as well as taking the GRE exam. Having a draft of your personal statement and just adding revisions in the fall can really save a lot of time.
If you can, I would also look ahead at what classes you will be taking in the fall and spring of your senior year, and make sure it is manageable to get everything done and attend interviews. Ask well in advance for letters of recommendation and provide deadlines to the individuals who will write the letters.
Overall, my biggest piece of advice is to get a really great planner and write everything down and set goals and deadlines for yourself!
Start early! There are many letters to write, paperwork to assemble, and tests to take and preparing to apply takes more time than you may think. Also, finding multiple knowledgeable people who can review your application materials is definitely a plus!
Many schools have professional workshops available through their career services departments that could be very useful!