ICYMI: 2017 Grad School Fair

The Concordia Courier

Victoria Jaffe accepts raffle entries to win IN-N-Out and Target gift cards at the 2017 Concordia Grad School Fair

By Taylor Stickle | 10/6/2017

With the school year in full swing, many juniors and seniors are starting to wonder what to do after graduation. Luckily, Concordia offers a multitude of resources in order to help us decide which path is right for us. One of these incredible resources is the Grad School Fair— a decade long tradition organized by Victoria Jaffe, Director of Career Development. This year’s fair kicked off at 10:30 a.m. Wed. Oct. 4 with over 20 schools in attendance.

Schools ranging from University of California Irvine, all the way out to Grand Canyon University were in attendance providing something for everyone at the fair this year. Each school sent representatives boasting a wide variety of potential master’s programs to enter. There were schools offering medical programs, psychology programs, communication and PR programs and even online programs. If there was any doubt in anyone’s mind prior to the fair about whether or not to attend graduate school, this fair was the perfect place to help you decide. UCI was even holding a raffle to win a free GRE prep course which normally costs almost $800!

For freshmen and sophomores who may be thinking that it is too early for them to start looking into graduate programs, Jaffe believes that it is never too early to start looking into grad schools. “It is a great opportunity for the young college student to be active in their career planning. Students can research academic areas, identify their career interests and develop a broad network.”

“Graduate school is available to everyone,” said Jaffe. “However, students should ask themselves whether their motivation will sustain the investment in time and expense of a graduate degree.” She suggests conducting extensive research into graduate schools to find out what may be best for you. She also heeds that not all careers require a graduate degree, so you should also research what your desired career requires.

Speaking with your professors is another way to find out if graduate school is right for you. Many of Concordia’s professors hold doctorates or have been active practitioners in their given field of expertise, and can offer insights ranging from the application process to what graduate school is like.

“Graduate school is difficult but incredibly rewarding,” said Dr. Erin Nelson. “If you are considering graduate school, I say go for it because it certainly cannot hurt your career or reputation to pursue higher education.” Nelson recommends to students who are interested in graduate school to participate in scholarly extra-curricular activities. The President's Academic Showcase in March and serving as a research assistant are good resume-boosting options.

Nelson continued, “Graduate school is centered on research, so the more exposure and training you can get now, the better off you will be in graduate school. I highly suggest students do their homework on potential schools and the steps needed to apply very early. This will give them adequate time to study for the necessary exams, such as the GRE or MCAT, and write strong personal statements to help their application stand out above the rest.”

While the Grad School Fair may have come and gone for this year, for those who are considering graduate school, there is still time and resources for you to research whether or not grad school is right for you. Jaffe suggests to those who may have missed the fair to visit the Career Services page on Concordia’s website. On there you will find ample resources to help you to decide which grad school is right for you and additional advice on how to get accepted into the school of your choice!

For more information on graduate school planning, visit https://www.cui.edu/studentlife/career-services/index/id/19601.

To make an appointment with Victoria Jaffe, email her at victoria.jaffe@cui.edu.

Tags: Education, event

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