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How to Apply for Graduate School
“Are you ready to Sink or Swim?”
NSF Summer REU Seminar
Wednesday, June 24, 2015
Bernard ...
• For people who:
– want to make a difference in the world.
– are not in a hurry to get a job or be rich.
– desire satisfa...
Are You Ready for Grad
School? Quiz
• I plan to complete my bachelor’s degree yes/no
• I love my field of study (major) ye...
# 1 Would you like to
increase your income
over your professional
career?
# 2 Would you like to go
to school for free?
# 3...
5
Why Graduate School?
$0
$20,000
$40,000
$60,000
$80,000
$100,000
$120,000
$140,000
$160,000
Ph.D. M.S. B.S. High School No High
School
$142,055...
• Space Flight & Aviation
• Internet
• Nuclear Technology
• Lasers and Fiber Optics
• Heath care Technologies
• Interstate...
• Graduate school is not “more of the same”
You specialize in your courses and assignments with
research (thesis, disserta...
Exciting, Fun, Rewarding!!!!
10
Professional Travel
11
Preparation to Become a Leader
Your Grad School Time Line:
2015-2016
A u g u s t S e p t e m b e r O c t o b e r
N o v e m b e r D e c e m b e r J a n u ...
August 2015
1. Explore graduate programs and their web sites,
check for financial incentives. Review graduate
program’s ca...
Choosing your Graduate School
• Location (NEWS: North, East, West and South)
• Personal/family reasons, available housing
...
September 2015
• Apply to take the GRE Exam
(subject GRE may be required)
• Request graduate programs’ catalogs
and Fellow...
October 2015
• Complete early fellowship applications
• Take the GRE Write personal statement
• Select 5 to 10 universitie...
Writing Your Personal Statement
The personal statement gives you the opportunity to express your goals
and reasons for see...
“Prime the Pump” . Ask yourself
these tough questions :
1. What led you to choose this program?
2. Why do want to enter TH...
Personal Statement
Worksheet
• Brief opening statement
• Career goal(s) (motivation, desire, persistence, passion)
• (This...
November 2015
• Continue to fill out fellowship applications
• Secure letters of recommendation
• Request transcripts to b...
Financial Aid in Graduate School
• Fellowship/Traineeship, a grant comparable to a scholarship, no work is
required. Outsi...
• Research Assistantship (RA)
Assist a professor on a research project. Student will
normally derive thesis or dissertatio...
• Comparable to college scholarship
• Generally no work is required
• Can cover part or all of tuition
• May include a sti...
• National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship
• National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship
...
NSF GRFP Recipients
December 2015
• Complete online all applications
• Submit fellowship applications
• Take GRE again if needed
• Check that ...
January 2016
• Continue any steps from previous months if
not completed
• Verify that all materials were received,
especia...
Application Checklist
For each program you are applying complete this checklist:
Program: ____________________________
Com...
February/March 2016
• Check that applications were received
• Submit health forms if needed
• Follow up on any outstanding...
April 2016
• Plan your graduation activities
• Check for schools’ response to your application by
mid-April (April 15th)
•...
May 2016
• Enjoy graduation!
• If your program applications are rejected,
see about filing and appeal for
reconsideration ...
June/July 2016
• Work during summer months to save $$$
• Make housing arrangements
• Plan your travel to new school
• Have...
August 2016
• Arrive 2 weeks early and get settled
• Familiarize yourself with new surroundings
• If a job is needed start...
Congratulations!
You are on your way to earning
a graduate degree!
M.S. Ph.D.
.
Resources
• Institute on Broadening Participation (IBP)
• NASA One-Stop Shopping Initiative (OSSI)
• NIH Office of Intramu...
• The Leadership Alliance National Symposium
(LANS) – Summer Research Identification
Program (SR-EIP) – July-24-25, 2015
•...
37
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Nsf summer reu seminar applying to graduate school v

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Nsf summer reu seminar applying to graduate school

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Nsf summer reu seminar applying to graduate school v

  1. 1. How to Apply for Graduate School “Are you ready to Sink or Swim?” NSF Summer REU Seminar Wednesday, June 24, 2015 Bernard L. Batson, Sarina J. Ergas Ph.D., Miguel A. Labrador, Ph.D. USF College of Engineering Acknowledgements: Drs. Justin Boone, Regina Easley, Jose Hernandez
  2. 2. • For people who: – want to make a difference in the world. – are not in a hurry to get a job or be rich. – desire satisfaction in their accomplishments. – want more earning power, higher self-esteem, leadership, and career longevity. Is Graduate School Going Through Hoops?
  3. 3. Are You Ready for Grad School? Quiz • I plan to complete my bachelor’s degree yes/no • I love my field of study (major) yes/no • I need an advanced degree in my field yes/no • I have, or will find finances to pay for my studies yes/no • I have intelligence, initiative and self-discipline yes/no • I can easily maintain a 3.0 or higher CGPA yes/no • I am willing to make time for the graduate school application process yes/no • I persevere in reaching all my goals yes/no Total yes___no____
  4. 4. # 1 Would you like to increase your income over your professional career? # 2 Would you like to go to school for free? # 3 Do you like making friends with people who are smart and capable of providing support throughout your career? # 4 Would you enjoy making scientific contributions that impact society? #5 Do you want to a leader someone who helps to make decisions? # 5 Do you want a career where you work hard, but have fun!!!! Graduate School?
  5. 5. 5 Why Graduate School?
  6. 6. $0 $20,000 $40,000 $60,000 $80,000 $100,000 $120,000 $140,000 $160,000 Ph.D. M.S. B.S. High School No High School $142,055 $83,149 $69,605 $28,645 $19,169 U.S. Census Bureau, Educational Attainment--People 18 Years Old and Over, by Total Money Earnings in 2008, Work Experience in 2008 Age, Race, Hispanic Origin, and Sex Fortune
  7. 7. • Space Flight & Aviation • Internet • Nuclear Technology • Lasers and Fiber Optics • Heath care Technologies • Interstate Highway System • Electronics • Clean and Safe Drinking Water • Computers • Agricultural Mechanization Fame
  8. 8. • Graduate school is not “more of the same” You specialize in your courses and assignments with research (thesis, dissertation) as the main activity Graduate school is – Exciting – Relaxed at times – Intense at others – Independent – Being part of something a community What is Grad School Like?
  9. 9. Exciting, Fun, Rewarding!!!!
  10. 10. 10 Professional Travel
  11. 11. 11 Preparation to Become a Leader
  12. 12. Your Grad School Time Line: 2015-2016 A u g u s t S e p t e m b e r O c t o b e r N o v e m b e r D e c e m b e r J a n u a r y F e b r u a r y M a r c h A p r i l M a y J u n e / J u l y A u g u s t
  13. 13. August 2015 1. Explore graduate programs and their web sites, check for financial incentives. Review graduate program’s catalogs, brochures. Talk to your professors and advisers. 2. Seek out faculty who are doing research in areas that you are interested in. Read their websites and publications. 3. Begin to select programs, choose a few you are confident to be admitted to graduate study; consider both masters and PhD programs.
  14. 14. Choosing your Graduate School • Location (NEWS: North, East, West and South) • Personal/family reasons, available housing • Financial assistance, Costs, Fellowships, In-state tuition. • Size-small, medium, large; unique features • Program offerings-specialties, curriculum, length, hours • Fit between you, your goals, and the program • Program prerequisites (knowledge/skills/experience) • Selectivity, competition, minority recruitment • Reputation, remember you are applying to a program/dept. • Specific faculty members you want to work with. • Success of students completing program/obtaining jobs
  15. 15. September 2015 • Apply to take the GRE Exam (subject GRE may be required) • Request graduate programs’ catalogs and Fellowship information • Attend grad school fairs, forums, etc. • Review catalogs, fellowship information • Verify that you are enrolled for, and have taken all necessary courses for graduation • Request transcript of all institutions attended and check for errors
  16. 16. October 2015 • Complete early fellowship applications • Take the GRE Write personal statement • Select 5 to 10 universities/programs you will apply to • Visit your financial aid office, check for assistance outside institutional help • Begin to ask faculty for letters of recommendation (faculty, REU advisors, honors college, etc.)
  17. 17. Writing Your Personal Statement The personal statement gives you the opportunity to express your goals and reasons for seeking admission to a graduate program. Tell the program about you and why you are such a good candidate. Take time to think about your reasons for seeking admission, take time to write 3 drafts, and have someone else edit your statement. Statements must be tailored to program/discipline. • Be Specific • Align with Faculty Interests • Be honest and upbeat • Avoid “preaching” • Do not make excuses
  18. 18. “Prime the Pump” . Ask yourself these tough questions : 1. What led you to choose this program? 2. Why do want to enter THIS field rather than another? 3. What are your career goals? 4. What things about you that make you different from anyone else you know 5. I’m the graduate program director of the program to which you are applying. Why should I admit you, with full funding? 6. What skills do you possess that will be useful to a graduate program? 7. What obstacles have you overcome? How did you do it, and what have you learned through the struggle? – Avoid Preaching or making excuses
  19. 19. Personal Statement Worksheet • Brief opening statement • Career goal(s) (motivation, desire, persistence, passion) • (This is a good place to show rather than tell, use life experience from opening statement as a lead) • Reason for selecting program/institution (faculty, curriculum, research areas, etc.) (each school should get its own personalized statement with the program mentioned by name) • Reason why program/ institution should select you ( Research Interests and alignment with specific faculty in the Department, Research Experiences (REUs) National Presentations, Publications, Internships, ) • Leadership, Service, Community, Personal information • Other important considerations ( obstacles overcome, triumphs, etc.) • Closing statement (restate motivation, end with positive note)
  20. 20. November 2015 • Continue to fill out fellowship applications • Secure letters of recommendation • Request transcripts to be sent to programs • Begin to complete applications to graduate programs, follow instructions!
  21. 21. Financial Aid in Graduate School • Fellowship/Traineeship, a grant comparable to a scholarship, no work is required. Outside fellowships awarded from outside the university (foundation, federal agency,) • Assistantship, is comparable to work study, you are paid for work performed • Stipend, is a grant of money that can be used for tuition or living expenses • Waiver, usually for tuition, especially important if you are an out of state student • Student Health Insurance
  22. 22. • Research Assistantship (RA) Assist a professor on a research project. Student will normally derive thesis or dissertation from RA • Teaching Assistantship (TA) Teach sections or classes undergraduate courses or labs, or help grade papers/examinations • Graduate Assistantship (GA) Assist with a university, state government, or federal project supported by a grant: usually an administrative position Assistantships
  23. 23. • Comparable to college scholarship • Generally no work is required • Can cover part or all of tuition • May include a stipend for supporting the student • May be awarded by the University or outside agency  • External (federal or private) fellowships are typically “portable” • May require concurrent application/admissions to university,  specific graduate program(s), and participation in program  activities  Fellowships or Traineeship
  24. 24. • National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship • National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship • Science, Mathematics And Research for Transformation (SMART)  Scholarship for Service Program  • NASA Fellowships • Sloan University Centers of Exemplary Mentoring (UCEMs) • National Institutes of Health (NIH) • Gates Millennium Scholars National Fellowship/Traineeships
  25. 25. NSF GRFP Recipients
  26. 26. December 2015 • Complete online all applications • Submit fellowship applications • Take GRE again if needed • Check that all materials have been sent, especially letters of recommendation • Rest during recess and get ready for spring semester
  27. 27. January 2016 • Continue any steps from previous months if not completed • Verify that all materials were received, especially letters of recommendation (same for summer research applications) • Follow-up on any outstanding paperwork • Remember that most application deadlines are in January-February
  28. 28. Application Checklist For each program you are applying complete this checklist: Program: ____________________________ Completed: Follow up needed? ____Personal Statement ____ Three Letters of Recommendation ____Official Transcripts Requested ____Standardized Test Scores ____Application for Admission ____Application for Financial Aid ____Application for Fellowships ____Copy of Income Tax Return ____Other Information Requested ____ Fee Waiver Request
  29. 29. February/March 2016 • Check that applications were received • Submit health forms if needed • Follow up on any outstanding paperwork • Set up visits to meet with faculty and graduate students and tour facilities
  30. 30. April 2016 • Plan your graduation activities • Check for schools’ response to your application by mid-April (April 15th) • Accept “best” offer for you, write letter or acceptance and go forward with plans. Email letters of decline to other programs. • Follow-up on financial needs and awards • Begin to look for summer employment • Consider starting RA early if possible.
  31. 31. May 2016 • Enjoy graduation! • If your program applications are rejected, see about filing and appeal for reconsideration if your situation has changed or consider taking some grad courses as a non-degree seeking student • Follow-up on employment and assistantship opportunities
  32. 32. June/July 2016 • Work during summer months to save $$$ • Make housing arrangements • Plan your travel to new school • Have “seed money” for first few months until financial assistance is available
  33. 33. August 2016 • Arrive 2 weeks early and get settled • Familiarize yourself with new surroundings • If a job is needed start your search before others arrive • Create a budget for your expenses, be prepared to have advanced money before fellowships are disbursed
  34. 34. Congratulations! You are on your way to earning a graduate degree! M.S. Ph.D. .
  35. 35. Resources • Institute on Broadening Participation (IBP) • NASA One-Stop Shopping Initiative (OSSI) • NIH Office of Intramural Training & Education • Science Careers from the journal Science • Seven Things I Wish I Knew Before Going to Graduate School • How to Win a Graduate Fellowship – The Chronicle of Higher Education
  36. 36. • The Leadership Alliance National Symposium (LANS) – Summer Research Identification Program (SR-EIP) – July-24-25, 2015 • Society for Advancing Hispanics/Chicanos & Native Americans in Science (SACNAS), October 29-31, 2015 • Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students (ABRCMS), November 11- 14, 2015 • Emerging Researchers National Conference (ERN) in STEM, - February 19-21, 2016 • National Conference of Undergraduate Research (NCUR) - April 7-9, 2016 • Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE), Society of Women Engineers (SWE) • Ronald McNair/LSAMP Regional Conferences Conferences/Networking
  37. 37. 37 Questions?

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