Monday, January 19, 2015

A Grad School Survival Guide for The Working Professional

It's an unfortunate cultural trend that college or university graduates returning to education after graduation are viewed as delaying adulthood, refusing to enter the real world in lieu of the safe space that is school. The reality is that realizing that a slog through a difficult job market when you lack necessary credentials is a waste of time and resources, and choosing to upgrade those credentials is one of the more adult decisions a young student can make. It's a reality in a crowded job market such as this that you need to stand out, and a post-graduate degree can move your resume to the top of the pile. Here's a few more reasons why participating in Graduate Programs in Toronto are a serious, mature investment in your career, rather than a prolonged adolescence.

It's designed to actively get you a job
At a school like Centennial College, graduate programs aren't general, but are instead specifically tailored towards one profession or skill, including Public Relations, Publishing, Television and Film Business, Media Management, and other, similar careers. In a postgrad, it's understood that you're finished the more general educational phase of your life, and are looking for a career, so you're taught how to specifically do that career. There's no electives, only courses aimed at teaching you practical job skill that you'll actively use in your profession.

The students around you are in the same boat, and can help you out
You wouldn't just be taking a postgrad for the educational experience, useful as that can be, but also for the people you'd be taking it with. Remember, your classmates will be the same as you, professionals looking to enter your specific career field. They represent an important human resource: Future working professionals you can network and connect with now, thanks to the shared bonding experience of moving through a postgrad together. In the coming years, if you can stay in touch, you'll be sharing jobs, resources, and tips while reminiscing about your school days with each other.

You'll be linked to a fresh set of resources, and connected to potential employers
It's a story I've heard a few times from students: They hit the job market before they were adequately prepared, and didn't take proper advantage of the resources that their school made available to them. Colleges, of course, have a wealth of job-hunting resources, including their own internal job boards, as well as centres to help you with resume-writing, interviews, and other job-hunting tips. By going back to school, you're getting another shot at making effective use of those resources, and this time, you have real job-market experience as context, meaning you get to start fresh with more wisdom. In addition to that, many post-grads include a field placement element, linking you directly to a potential employer, and allowing for further networking opportunities, if not a direct hire. At the very least, it puts your application to the top of the pile, since you'll have a chance to meet employers in person.

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