to planning for graduate study list
MAKING THE MOST OF UNDERGRADUATE OPPORTUNITIES
Your primary concern at Holy Cross should be to acquire a strong liberal arts education. Students decide at various points in their undergraduate years that they want to go on to graduate school in a certain field. Sometimes that field is not the same as their undergraduate major. Once you have begun to consider graduate school seriously, you should consult with your advisor and other mentors about curriculum choices that might strengthen your preparation consistent with a broad liberal arts background. For example, courses in theory, method, historical development, statistics, or research techniques might be particularly important foundations for advanced study in a discipline. Seminars, tutorials, laboratory and field research provide opportunities for special learning experiences outside the regular classroom setting and ways to test your interest in independent learning. Summer research opportunities are particularly valuable. Though more available in the sciences, the National Endowment for the Humanities also sponsors summer grants for undergraduates (apply in the Graduate Studies Office). Departmental and College Honors programs, concentrations, Study Abroad, local and Washington internships, interdisciplinary courses, and summer internships are all enriching aspects of undergraduate experience, which may have particular relevance to your plans for graduate study. Although not all departments at Holy Cross offer minors, strength in a second or allied area may be a great asset for graduate study.
Some fields of study require a reading knowledge (intermediate level or above) of one foreign language for a master's degree and two foreign languages for the Ph.D. Ask your professors what language requirements you might expect in the field in which you plan to do graduate study.
Through the Graduate Studies Advisor learn about the national fellowship competitions such as the Truman, Javits, Goldwater, Marshall, Rhodes, James Madison, Fulbright, and Rotary. Winning one of these fellowships is a great plus for both acceptance and funding in graduate school.
Participation in extracurricular activities such as the choir and musical ensembles, theater, the college newspaper, student/faculty forums, literary and political journals, and social service groups like SPUD and SCOHAH may have an important influence on your career decision and graduate plans. Academic internships also provide an excellent resource for exploring careers that may be of interest to you.
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