Campus Offices You Should Turn to for Graduate School Help
By Pat Donahue
Did you know that over 25% of IUB students attend graduate or professional school following commencement?
If you are considering law school, medical school, an M.B.A., master’s or Ph.D. programs, your first stop for advice should be professors or professional staff who have already achieved the advanced degree you are seeking. They can provide information on the current job market for the degree, refer you to professional associations or conferences, help you network with their colleagues, and provide pointers on what to do and not do in the graduate school application process. Schedule a time during their office hours to discuss the support and challenges involved in applying to graduate school.
IUB has numerous offices to help you get into graduate school. One of the most valuable is the Health Professions Prelaw Center at http://www.hpplc.indiana.edu/ HPPLC provides advising and other services for students who want to pursue careers in law, medicine, or other health professions. Advisors in HPPLC provide advice on courses, professional development, and volunteering related to the careers of law, medicine, dentistry, occupational therapy, optometry, pharmacy, physical therapy, physician assistant, veterinary medicine, and others. They critique letters of recommendation, present workshops, and host graduate school fairs. Information on HPPLC’s Law School Fair on October 3 can be found at http://www.hpplc.indiana.edu/law/law-lawday.shtml
HPPLC can also provide information on admissions tests such as the Law School Admissions Test (LSAT), Medical College Admission Test (MCAT), Dental Admission Test (DAT), and Veterinary College Admission Test (VCAT). Information on these tests can be found online as well. For example, the Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) can be found at http://www.mba.com/us and the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) at www.ets.org/gre
When applying to graduate school, students should have their applications and essays reviewed and critiqued by different advisors. In addition to HPPLC and your professors, other offices that provide advice on the graduate school application process are School based career services offices, the Writing Center, Hudson Holland, Hutton Honors College, and the Career Development Center. One of the best kept secrets on campus is Paul Fogleman with the Undergraduate Scholars Office for Competitive Awards, Research, and Engagement. He helps undergraduates apply for nationally competitive awards, such as the Fulbright. More information can be found at http://www.indiana.edu/~iucare/
In partnership with Hudson Holland and the Hutton Honors College, the Career Development Center is currently facilitating a graduate school series on getting into graduate school topics such as Applying to Graduate School, Preparing for the Graduate School Fair, Financing Graduate School, and Preparing Graduate School Application Materials. The Career Development Center is hosting the Graduate School Fair this Tuesday, Sept. 27 from 4-7PM in Alumni Hall of the IMU. A list of graduate schools attending can be found at http://cdc.indiana.edu/experience/job-fairs.html
Writing Tutorial Services (WTS) has tutors that can help IUB students with graduate school applications and essays. They have a site that offers some tips on how to get started with writing a personal statement: http://www.indiana.edu/~wts/pamphlets/personal_statements.shtml
WTS is located at Wells Library and students have access to free 50 minute tutorials, or if more convenient, students can utilize free 25 or 50 minute sessions at various residence halls and culture centers on campus. The website has additional information about locations: http://www.indiana.edu/~wts/
The University Graduate School has the Emissary for Graduate Student Diversity Program which connects trained IUB graduate students with prospective students to assist in the various stages of the graduate application and admission process, and to provide information and referrals to campus resources and services: http://www.indiana.edu/~gradlife/
The University Graduate School has an extensive listing of fellowships and awards that offer great financial support options for graduate school, and both internal and external fellowships and awards are listed on the site: http://graduate.indiana.edu/admissions/financial-support/fellowships-awards/index.shtml
Scholarships and fellowships for graduate students are also offered by Schools and by individual departments within the Schools. The College of Arts and Sciences offers a list of fellowships and awards on the website: https://college.indiana.edu/student-portal/graduate-students/financial-support/fellowships-awards.html The IU Chemistry Department offers a listing of several fellowships available to graduate Chemistry students, and they also have the link to a government site that has listing of other national fellowships for STEM graduate students: http://www.chem.indiana.edu/graduate/financial-assistance/fellowships.asp
Although this list of services is by no means complete, it will give you a good starting point on learning about the graduate school application process. For many careers, advanced education is required to work within that career field, so meet with your academic advisor and your career advisor to develop a graduate school plan so you will achieve your career goals.