Anyone thinking of pursuing GRADUATE SCHOOL—whether an MA in English, an MS Ed English Teacher degree, an MFA in creative writing, or doctoral study for a PhD—should TALK EARLY AND OFTEN TO FACULTY MEMBERS, who will always help you think through your educational and employment options.  Two sane websites that will help you get started in MA/PhD conversations are Linda Troost’s “Advice for Those Interested in English Graduate School” and the English Department at Washington and Lee University’s Getting a Ph.D. in English

NB: There are many other graduate and professional degrees to think about besides education and English.  See the CAREERS CHART on page 12 & go online to graduate schools to see what courses they offer and what professions they prepare you to enter. Consider art/entertainment/museums, multimedia/communications, editing/publishing, business/finance, health services, government/law, IT, non-profit organizations, etc. 

If you plan to attend graduate school right after Lehman, you should consider taking the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) during the summer or early fall of your senior year.  Lehman’s Department of Continuing Education offers courses each semester and every summer.  Go to Brochure or Test Prep .  The Philosophy Department is also working on the interdisciplinary Reasoning and Exposition Minor , which it intends for students honing their theoretical and analytical skills in preparation for professional-school tests like the GRE.

If you decide to apply to graduate schools (or jobs), here are a few basic tips:

  1. Stay in close communication with faculty members—don’t be strangers.
  2. Apply to SEVERAL schools at all levels!!!!  It’s expensive to apply, but you don’t know where you will or will not get in and you don’t know who will or will not give you (lots of) money. 
  3. Do your RESEARCH.  Look into CUNY and SUNY for sure, but ALSO PRIVATE institutions near and far, which often have money for scholarships.  Fordham, to cite a nearby example, often fully funds students for 5 years with teaching duties during only part of that time.
  4. Never ever send in an essay/application without having a faculty member review it!
  5. Letters of Recommendation.  Click here for more information.