This is my last semester at the beautiful UNCW. Suddenly, I’m faced with the consequences of all my academic choices up until now along with the integral question of what do I do next? My college experience is seeming to conclude almost as fast as it started and I feel like I still have so much more potential to learn. A number of these factors lead to me making my next huge life decision, going to graduate school. Here I will outline the benefits of grad school for any one of you who might find that’s what they want to explore in the near or distant future given the opportunity.
- Graduate school typically acts as the academic version of professional training, enabling students with the exact knowledge they need in their desired careers
- Going to grad school is an investment in your own potential
- Along with developing professional skills, you’ll also gain valuable professional relationships with the people you meet there
- Gaining a strong professional network in your graduate work will serve you throughout your career desires
- Gain academic recognition for your work and polish your reputation
- Work with some of the best minds of your field
- Personal growth, find what exactly you love to do in your field of interest
- Financial investment in the future, U.S. graduate workers with a master’s degree or higher earn an average of $10,000 more a year than those with a bachelor’s degree
- Make more connections!
In the field of Communication Studies, success comes from more than just a deep understanding of rhetoric and communication practices, it comes from the connections you can build and maintain with other people in the field. The people you meet can be the ones that ultimately give you opportunities to change your professional life for the better.
My personal expertise is in digital marketing and communication and this upcoming spring I’ve been lucky enough to be accepted into Marquette University’s graduate program for Digital Communication Strategies, the perfect specialized fit for my field of interest. There I’ll be able to make connections and gain further understanding of how to plan effective online marketing strategies and create more digital content in the professional work setting.
Graduate school isn’t for everyone though, it requires a great financial investment along with 1-3 years of your life. It also isn’t the only win condition you need to have a successful professional career starting out of college, though it certainly does help, going without it won’t be a detriment to your career. If you find yourself in the same position I was in, with a direction you know you want to go and invest deeper in your future, graduate school may be the path for you.
Explore any opportunity you’re presented with if it suits your needs and if none fitting are presented to you, go and dig them up. What’s important is following the path that will get you to where you want to be spending your future, and most importantly, don’t give up if that path isn’t easy!
– Jordan McFaul