GV hosts Graduate School Fair to connect undergrads with opportunities


GVL / Bethann Long

Chloe Schram, Staff Writer

On Oct. 18 Grand Valley State University’s Career Center hosted a Graduate School Fair in Henry Hall on its Allendale campus.

 The Graduate School Fair took place from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and gave students and alumni an opportunity to learn more about their futures ahead of them.

The Graduate School Fair allowed students to discover their options for graduate school and talk with representatives from different graduate programs to find a program that suits them best.

Various universities and programs attended the event alongside those at GVSU, including programs from Western Michigan University, the University of Michigan, Michigan State University and Madonna University.

Jessica Otey, a senior at GVSU, said she became interested in going to graduate school for psychology through exploring different courses.

“When I came to college, I didn’t quite know what I wanted, so I decided to see what sparked my interest,” Otey said. “After taking some psychology courses, I knew that I couldn’t see myself doing anything else.”

The Graduate School Fair allowed students like Otey to browse different collegiate programs to find what would help them achieve their desired careers. Other students attending the fair explained their reasoning for choosing to explore graduate programs of interest to them.

Sophia Rose, a student at GVSU, said that she hopes to go to graduate school to become a physician’s assistant.

“I have always wanted to be in the medical field and help people,” Rose said.

Often, students in the medical field can discover different career paths with similar types of education, which Rose said is her favorite part about going into the medical field.

Opposite the booths for prospective students, representatives of various graduate schools hoped to use the event as an opportunity to meet potential students and pitch their programs.

Scott Berlin, director of the School of Social Work at GVSU, described the program and its members’ desire to connect with students at the fair.

“We surely want to attract GVSU students and encourage them to stay with us,” Berlin said. “Social work has the largest graduate program here at GVSU.”

Some students may choose a graduate program that conforms with their past undergraduate studies. However, as Berlin described, this is not always the case. Many graduate programs welcome undergraduate students regardless of the type of bachelor’s degree they received.

“We even attract students who do not have an undergraduate degree in social work,” Berlin said. “All majors are welcome here.”

GVSU offers a variety of master’s and doctoral degrees and allows students the opportunity to complete combined bachelor’s and master’s degrees in order to get into their desired career path sooner.

In the instance of social work, Berlin said that there are two different paths students can take. Students who went to undergraduate school and have a bachelor’s in social work could take the advanced track with fewer credits. Students who did not graduate with a bachelor’s in social work are eligible for the regular path at GVSU’s social work graduate program.

Those interested in finding out more about what GVSU’s graduate programs have to offer can visit the university’s graduate schools website.