Graduate study is an important step and you are not alone when doing all the research, taking the decisions and ensuring the financing.
Family and Friends
Family and friends are always there for you throughout the process. These are often the people with whom you first share your idea - when you start thinking about pursuing Master’s degree studies. You can then discuss all your options with them to clarify what is best for you in terms of field of study and career, country of study, budget, etc.
When I say family, this may be your parents and siblings, but it may also be your spouse and children – depending on your age. Not everyone embarks upon Master’s degree studies immediately after graduating with a Bachelor’s degree. So some of you may have already built a family of your own by the time you decide to go back to school for graduate studies. Whatever, the case, it is very important to get the family support for Master’s degree studies. This will bring you considerable comfort during your Master’s degree studies.
When I say friends, I mean people who know you well, who share your vision and whose opinion you trust. You may decide to go for graduate studies together with your friends, or because they have done so and are happy with what they did.
If you are still studying for your Bachelor’s degree or have recently graduated, it will be useful to go back to your favorite professors and ask them for advice. They are the people who know your academic potential and what you are passionate about. They will give you hints about which fields of study will represent the most logical step given your interests and possibly provide information about which universities and countries are reputable in your desired field of study.
They can also put you touch with professors from other universities, so that you can learn more about the graduate programmes in which you are interested.
Last, but certainly not least, some of your university professors will write the letters of recommendation in support of your Master’s degree application. If some of them have been involved in your decision making process, their letters of reference can be even stronger.
Wondering which career path to take, what profession will be best for you in the long-term, where your potential and strengths lie? Plan a career counselling session. The least you can benefit from this process is to arrive at a list of the right questions which you should answer in order to make a well-informed decision about your future. You can also get orientation on labour market trends and what employers value.
Career counselling is a tool people use at different stages of their life. Planning your career development is not something you do once and for all. Choosing your Master’s degree programme is just one of those occasions when career advice will be useful. Finding your first job and planning your whole career path is another timely moment to meet a career counsellor. Anytime when you are at professional crossroads, you can benefit from professional help of this kind.
Check part 2 of the article to find even more potential supporters for your Master’s degree project. Your questions and comments are welcome in the box below.