Senior STEM Majors Ready for Graduate School
By Aphra Murray, MS&T Editor
It is the time of the year when professors are piling on the work in preparation for finals week and students can almost taste how close they are to the finish. Application deadlines for graduate school begin to mount. STEM seniors here at Gettysburg College, in particular, have been feeling the pressure since the summer when advisors began to drop hints about resumes, GREs, CVs and personal statements.
Students in the science’s in particular have mentioned that they have struggled with the balance of academic work and deadlines for graduate schools. Chemistry senior Emily Harrison stated that “before the semester started, I made a schedule of what I needed to accomplish each week in order to have my applications completed on time.” Now that finals are coming up, most deadlines have either passed or are rapidly approaching. Harrison now says that the distraction of other classes is useful because at the moment it’s “a waiting game, but I’m excited to hear back from schools and start thinking about where I could see myself spending the next 5+ years working towards a Ph.D.”
The cost of graduate schools has also been a burden on many of our students. With the rising costs of tuition and textbooks, students hoping to continue their education beyond Gettysburg are also having to cover the costs of the GRE and application fees. For the GRE, the general test alone is around $160 and then an added cost of $27 to send the scores to every school that an applicant wants to. On top of that, there are the application costs themselves, which can range to up to $120 per school. Finally, the recently passed Senate GOP tax plan indicates that tuition waivers for STEM students attending graduate school could be taxed as income while they attend, which would significantly increase their current tax liabilities.
Overall, it looks like seniors are getting excited for the holidays as it signals a break from both applications and schoolwork.