Many undergraduates decide that at some point that they would like to pursue their goal of earning their advanced degree. Some decide to take some time off between their undergraduate and graduate education. Others go straight from earning their undergraduate degree to graduate school. Which way you decide to go depends on you personally, but here are 5 reasons why you should consider going to graduate school right now…
1. You are already in a “school” mode. As an undergraduate you have spent the last 4 or so years of your life studying and engrossed in a college environment. While graduate school is a deeper commitment than undergraduate school, what you learned from your undergraduate education is still fresh in your mind when you enter graduate school. You still have a school mindset and it is easier to take what you have learned in undergrad and apply it toward your graduate degree if there isn’t a lapse in time.
2. While you are still enrolled at your college or university, information about graduate schools and their programs is more readily available to you. You still have immediate access to your teachers and professors, career advisors, and libraries of information about graduate schools, etc. If you have already graduated and moved on, you can still access this information but it takes a little more work to find and research the information. It is not at your fingertips like it is during your undergraduate study.
3. It is easier to request reference letters from faculty and staff. You, as a student, are fresh in the minds of your professors when you are still enrolled as a student, rather than after you graduate. You can walk to their office, request the letter, and pick it up without much effort at all. If you have already graduated, you will have to contact the professor, hope that he or she remembers who you are, and then make arrangements to receive the letter of reference from them.
4. Another reason to go straight from undergraduate to graduate school is that some advanced programs recruit recent graduates versus those that have been out of school for a period of time. While this doesn’t mean that you won’t get accepted to graduate school, it just means that the process may be simpler and less stressful if you pursue graduate school immediately following undergrad.
5. It is less disruptive to the flow of your life to go straight from undergraduate to graduate school. Once you are finished with school, both undergraduate and graduate, then you can carry on with your career and your family and home life. You avoid the interruption of having to go back to graduate school after you have been in the “real world” for a few years if you follow-up your undergrad with grad school.
Graduate school can be a very rewarding experience, but it should not be entered into lightly. It is a huge commitment of your time and money. Choosing to go to graduate school is a decision that you should make based on your own personal needs, goals, and desires. There are many factors that you should consider very carefully before making your decision.