Students are letting opportunities to attend graduate school slip from their grasp – and it’s not because they can’t afford it.
Linda Knight, director of Fellowship Programs and Recruitment, has worked diligently to ensure students have the chance to study in a graduate program without concerning themselves about the cost.
The result- the Graduate Feeder Scholars program, has made arrangements with 47 institutions to allot 3-5 slots for students per academic year. The program is designed for undergraduate students who are working towards their masters.
Knight said the problem is that many students assume they have to wait until graduation to start filling out applications.
“Students can start with campus visits, as early as their sophomore year,” said Knight.
Knight also said that students don’t apply to graduate schools because it may not be needed in their field.
According to a study done by the Census Bureau, a bachelor’s degree is now equivalent to the high school diploma of ten years ago.
“The job market is filled with bachelor degrees. A master’s degree will make the student more marketable,” said Knight.
Students should start considering their options early. The program requires students have a 3.0 G.P.A. They are only eligible for the program up to one year after graduation from an undergraduate program.
Students then submit a completed application for the graduate school(s) of their choice, with an unofficial transcript, and give them to Mrs. Knight. Once accepted, negotiations for a financial aid package begin. The package covers the cost of tuition and any other applicable fees.
“We want the best for our best,” Knight said. “We want to go for the full gamut.”
Some students wonder why they are not informed about the graduate feeder program early in their college careers.
“Professors and advisers should let their students know what’s going on,” said Brandon Marshall, 22, a junior computer information systems student from Dallas.
Other students agree.
“At FSU, they are consistently pushing for their students to go to graduate school,” said Nijinsky Dix, 19, a sophomore criminal justice student from Jacksonville. “The same thing should be happening here at FAMU.”
Felicia Breward, 21, believes it is up to the students to determine their options regarding their education.
“Students definitely need to take advantage of these kinds of opportunities,” the junior healthcare management student from Oakland, CA said. “If it’s already paid for, you might as well go for it.”
Aricka Foreman can be reached at Aricka_Foreman@hotmail.com