WS Convocation, 10/26/2009
In this day and age, the idea of education past a bachelor’s degree is increasingly expected if not absolutely necessary. The thought of the time and financial resources involved can be daunting, though. One of the best ways to alleviate this anxiety is to speak to those who have already gone through this long and rewarding process of acquiring their graduate certificates, masters, or Ph.D.
The UNH Women’s Studies Program was lucky enough to have five women come to speak at the 2009 Fall Convocation regarding their experiences in post-college education and careers. Courtney Marshall, Lesley Curtis, Jing Huang, Joelle Ryan, and Caroline Leyva all shared what occupations they currently held and what education helped them to where they are. Sharing about the barriers and hurdles they have overcome along the way regarding both education and job searches gave insight to current students, some of who will be graduating this year.
One of the main threads throughout the discussion was the fact that Women’s Studies is extremely adaptable and interdisciplinary. All of the speakers had integrated their work in women’s studies into their current occupations and passions. Not only did their continued education open doors to available jobs, but also was a necessity in many cases.
The speakers had advice on both finding the right university, as well as paying for this perfect school. The speakers and WS faculty provided informative and sometimes blunt advice for seeking out a graduate school. Everyone pitched in with advice about studying abroad, looking for good financial aid packages, going to schools in areas you'd like to live, finding professors you'd like to work with, and seeking out fellowships or work opportunities within your choice university to assist in paying for further education. The speakers also reminded students that it is crucial to find your passion, even if that takes you some time. Most importantly, students must make sure we use the resources available and talk to anyone in the UNH Women’s Studies Program for advising.
The panelists acknowledged that all of this information on education after a bachelor’s degree can overwhelm even the most focused individuals. However, everyone on the panel agreed that it was important to take the plunge…even if you are not entirely sure what lies ahead.