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Go to Graduate School A Successful Life Go to Graduate School Professor Martha Mecartney Graduate Advisor to the Materials Science and Engineering Degree.

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Presentation on theme: "Go to Graduate School A Successful Life Go to Graduate School Professor Martha Mecartney Graduate Advisor to the Materials Science and Engineering Degree."— Presentation transcript:


2 Go to Graduate School A Successful Life Go to Graduate School Professor Martha Mecartney Graduate Advisor to the Materials Science and Engineering Degree Program Former UCI Associate Dean of Graduate Studies

3 Go to Graduate School Why go to graduate school? You want to teach in a college or university (need a Ph.D.) You want to conduct research at a university or in industry or at a government lab (need a Ph.D.) You want to be a manager and move up the professional management track (need M.S. or M.B.A.) You want to earn more than $100,000/year five years after finishing your Ph.D.

4 Go to Graduate School What does a Masters of Science require? Usually have two options for the M.S. Coursework (12 courses) and comprehensive exam or project Coursework and thesis (based on small research project) One to two years to complete

5 Go to Graduate School What does a Doctorate of Philosophy require? Must complete same coursework as for M.S. Research on an independent project providing a significant new contribution to science or engineering (dissertation) Milestones: comprehensive preliminary exam, Ph.D. qualifying exam, defense of your Ph.D. dissertation Time to degree, including M.S., is usually 5 years (this depends on YOU)

6 Go to Graduate School What are the steps to admission? Check out the on-line catalogue for each school and the on-line web application process for each school Deadlines are usually December or January Fill out your application (statement of interest will help us know about your research experience, research interests) GRE scores Transcripts 3 letters of recommendation

7 Go to Graduate School How do you pick a graduate school? Ask faculty in your department to recommend schools (they know you best) Think about the research areas you are interested in Find a program that matches your research interests Find research advisors that you like Location Your GPA (CSU has lower minimum GPA than UC)

8 Go to Graduate School How we pick who gets in…. GPA (For all UC programs, rare admission below 3.0) GRE Letters of recommendation (from faculty or Ph.D. recipients) Statement of interest, research experience Is everything in on time? Do we know you? Have you received an outside fellowship?

9 Go to Graduate School Come for a Visit Admission Letters sent usually in late February or early March If a program wants you for the Ph.D., they usually will help pay for at least part of a visit (ask!) Many programs have visitation days, weekend Talk to faculty, talk to students, see the housing

10 Go to Graduate School Now the best part….. You can get paid for going to graduate school!

11 Go to Graduate School Financial Support All qualified U.S. citizens or permanent residents should be offered financial support with Ph.D. admission Financial support includes tuition/fees and a monthly living stipend Some campuses, such as UC Irvine, offer guaranteed on campus housing Some financial support for excellent M.S. students also

12 Go to Graduate School Types of Financial Support Fellowships Research Assistantships Teaching Assistantships Summer Internships All support is given competitively, and based on continuing good standing. FAFSA must be filled out each year

13 Go to Graduate School Fellowships Fellowships are primarily given to first year Ph.D. students so they can focus on completing their coursework Special fellowships and external fellowships may also be used in subsequent years Students are expected to work on research full time after coursework is completed Some programs offer research rotations the first year for new students, to help them select a research group

14 Go to Graduate School Research Assistantships Students conduct research on projects sponsored by the faculty Expect 40 hours/week or more of time 20 hours/week paid by Research Assistantship 20-30 hours/week from course units (credit for research) Can expect to be off when university is closed (completely) and perhaps 2 weeks/year additional

15 Go to Graduate School Teaching Assistantships TAs grade homework and tests, run demonstrations, hold office hours, lead discussions, maintain class websites, maintain records of grades, run labs, grade homework and tests Excellent preparation for future faculty positions – fellowship opportunities Students are selected based on faculty nominations, match with course material, instructor preference, past experience All students who want to be a TA or grader should take TA training.

16 Go to Graduate School Cool Programs to Check Out National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Fellowships, $30,000/year for 3 years (plus fees and tuition paid), deadline early November NSF IGERT (Integrative Graduate Education and Research Training), $30,000/year (plus fees and tuition paid) Graduate Assistantships in Areas of National Need (GAANN) Fellowships, pays all tuition and fees, provides about $1700/month, guarantees 5 years of support for Ph.D. NSF Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate (AGEP) encourages minority underrepresented students to continue for the Ph.D.

17 Go to Graduate School NSF Graduate Fellowships Need Identify top choice institution 3 letters of recommendation Transcripts (GRE optional but recommended) Proposed research project (give a copy to references) Deadline near Nov. 1 6201 6201 Don’t forget to check out the NSF Graduate Teaching K-12 Fellowships &org=DGE&from=home &org=DGE&from=home

18 Go to Graduate School NSF IGERT Programs The Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) program seeks to train PhD scientists and engineers with the interdisciplinary background and the technical, professional and personal skills needed to address the global questions of the future

19 Go to Graduate School Dept. of Education GAANN Fellowships Check out this link for a list of programs (3 year funding cycle) at various universities Need based and merit based – so if have a trust fund, working spouse, may not qualify rds.html rds.html

20 Go to Graduate School NSF AGEP Program is focused on encouraging underrepresented minority students to continue to the Ph.D.

21 Go to Graduate School Any Questions? Professor Martha Mecartney 949-824-2919 744C Engineering Tower Go to Graduate School!

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