How To Avoid Going Into Grad School Blind

The Succinct Survival Guide To Avoid Going Into Grad School Blind

A brief survival guide on what to expect when getting your next level degree.


OK so it's senior year, your break year, or you're deciding it's time to go back to school and you want to get a higher level degree. Here are a few pointers that will help prepare you for graduate studies that I had to encounter first hand. I went into grad school blind, but that doesn't mean you necessarily have to.

First and foremost, you're "special" now and by special, you are now part of the crew when it comes to interaction with faculty. You are no longer a student, but now a person trying to get deeper in the field, a colleague if you will. Don't be surprised if your professors start telling you to call them by their names or approach you out of the blue and ask what's up or literally make time to visit with you if you stop by their office. It's like Aladdin when it comes to exchanges with professors: "A whole new world."

Heading in to grad school like... Giphy

Secondly, it's worth mentioning the class size. Remember your senior year when you were waist deep in your field and all of a sudden, your thirty to sixty student classes started becoming anywhere from ten to twenty students and you started seeing the same ones over and over? Yeah well, you were being programmed and trained for grad school and instead of ten to twenty students, you're down to about eight so be prepared.

This, in turn, allows you closer instruction, building a tighter rapport with your instructors, and if this is a different set of people that you worked with for your bachelor's, a greater working relationship. Seeing as you'll be seeing a lot of them more than once during this period, they will learn your strengths and weaknesses all the while training and instructing you to be elevated farther in your field. You'll be close like Ms. Lippy and Billy in "Billy Madison."

Third, the graduate school produces a degree that will help you add dollars to that future salary. However, it's not easy and all sunshine and rainbows. After just going through my first fall in grad school, I can tell you it's double the work, double the effort, and double the time you have to put in. This, in turn, leads to sleepless nights, nights of aggravation, and yes trips that you'll have to make to a professor's office during office hours. Don't be surprised if you have to do this and never did as an undergrad. You're not alone in this regard.

Lastly, graduate school is fun and rewarding. As much as I have worked so far by giving up sleep, being stressed, and sometimes being completely aggravated during assignments, I could not ask for a better position to be in. My fellow students are incredible people that are working as hard as I am, and we are experiencing the same issues. My professors legitimately care about me and treat me as though I'm working with them.

These are great things and ultimately the sacrifices that I am making and have been making will lead to something greater — a master's degree. Keep in mind, I was on a break year with my bachelor's and found out that I needed to come back because there wasn't much out there for me. If you haven't considered grad school, you probably should. The rewards will outweigh the sacrifices and at the end of the day, you'll look back on graduate school with some of the memories of all of this and say, "I'm honestly really glad I did that."

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To The Friends I Won't Talk To After High School

I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.


So, for the last four years I’ve seen you almost everyday. I’ve learned about your annoying little brother, your dogs and your crazy weekend stories. I’ve seen you rock the awful freshman year fashion, date, attend homecoming, study for AP tests, and get accepted into college.

Thank you for asking me about my day, filling me in on your boy drama and giving me the World History homework. Thank you for complimenting my outfits, laughing at me presenting in class and listening to me complain about my parents. Thank you for sending me your Quizlets and being excited for my accomplishments- every single one of them. I appreciate it all because I know that soon I won’t really see you again. And that makes me sad. I’ll no longer see your face every Monday morning, wave hello to you in the hallways or eat lunch with you ever again. We won't live in the same city and sooner or later you might even forget my name.

We didn’t hang out after school but none the less you impacted me in a huge way. You supported my passions, stood up for me and made me laugh. You gave me advice on life the way you saw it and you didn’t have to but you did. I think maybe in just the smallest way, you influenced me. You made me believe that there’s lots of good people in this world that are nice just because they can be. You were real with me and that's all I can really ask for. We were never in the same friend group or got together on the weekends but you were still a good friend to me. You saw me grow up before your eyes and watched me walk into class late with Starbucks every day. I think people like you don’t get enough credit because I might not talk to you after high school but you are still so important to me. So thanks.

With that said, I truly hope that our paths cross one day in the future. You can tell me about how your brothers doing or how you regret the college you picked. Or maybe one day I’ll see you in the grocery store with a ring on your finger and I’ll be so happy you finally got what you deserved so many guys ago.

And if we ever do cross paths, I sincerely hope you became everything you wanted to be. I hope you traveled to Italy, got your dream job and found the love of your life. I hope you have beautiful children and a fluffy dog named Charlie. I hope you found success in love before wealth and I hope you depended on yourself for happiness before anything else. I hope you visited your mom in college and I hope you hugged your little sister every chance you got. She’s in high school now and you always tell her how that was the time of your life. I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.

And hey, maybe I’ll see you at the reunion and maybe just maybe you’ll remember my face. If so, I’d like to catch up, coffee?



Cover Image Credit: High school Musical

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13 Meme-Worthy Graduation Photo Poses, For When The Same Old Same Old Gets Boring

Professionalism is dead, but memes will live on.


Welcome to the Stony Brook University 2019 Commencement. Everyone wants pictures to commemorate their huge success of making it through years of being in university. But while you can always take pretty pictures, it's 20 times more fun to take unconventional pictures. So grab some friends and put on your best meme face to replicate these meme-worthy graduation photos.

1. The Graduate

Introducing our subject for today, graduating with a major in psychology, Alyssa! This fun-loving and cute as a small rabbit girl is perfect for pulling off exciting poses. Start off with a pose that best represents who you are!

2. The Graph Me Like One of Your Calculators

Horizontal photos > vertical photos.

3. The Sidekicks

Make sure you recruit some henchmen or friends to look inferior while sitting next to you so you can look like the boss you truly are.

4. The Creeps

Utilize your henchmen in every way you can.

5. The Creeps 2.0

Again, show off your friends who aren't graduating. Who said the photos have to be all about the graduate?

6. The Jesus Died For Our Sins

From Writing 102 to graduation photos, religious archetypes will never leave you.

7. The Jump Slightly So It Looks Like You're Being Taken By Aliens


8. The Unlocked Character

Turned out dark in a photo? Just say it was intentional. You still need to get to Level 2020 to unlock this special character.

9. The Waterbender

All you need is a fountain and shamelessness to pull this one off.

10. The I Wish My Friends Were Coming With Me

When you're younger friends aren't graduating, the best you can do is pretend they are.

11. The Fancy

Look up "Fancy" by Twice. You'll get it.

12. The Pseudo-Dad

Your friend-parent hybrid can help you make sure you look your best when taking photos.

13. The Pole Hugger

The trees are dying and this is our future.

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