Presented in partnership with the USC Dornsife Pre-Graduate Advising Office
Graduate Schools Fair
What is the Graduate Schools Fair and why should I attend?
Once a year in the fall semester the Career Center, in partnership with the USC Dornsife Pre-Graduate Advising Office, sponsors the Graduate Schools Fair.
This is your opportunity to learn about graduate schools and gain an early start on the application process. If you are thinking about going to graduate school, attend the event to learn more about what options are available to you. You will meet with school representatives face-to-face, allowing for personal interaction in asking questions of a specific school. At the event, you can:
- Explore the possibilities of graduate and professional education.
- Learn about the requirements for programs.
- Get detailed information about various schools and their programs.
- Gather materials to review later.
- Network with professionals in your future field.
Students are encouraged to pre-register on connectSC to see what schools will be attending.
How do I prepare for the fair?
Do you have questions about graduate school or want to chat with a counselor about graduate programs? Make an appointment with the USC Dornsife Pre-Graduate Advising Office and/or attend the events of Pre-Graduate School Week. Prior to the fair, be sure to:
- Research graduate schools of interest by reading their program descriptions and visiting their websites. View information on the graduate schools attending the fair on connectSC.
- Prepare questions for schools of interest based on your research. Make an appointment with the USC Dornsife Pre-Graduate Advising Office to get started.
- Prepare your elevator pitch to highlight the skills and knowledge you are building and your areas of interest.
- Be prepared to answer questions representatives might ask.
What do I do at the fair?
- Come dressed in business professional attire. You want to make a good first impression, and you want to project an appearance that says you are mature and serious.
- Arrive early and give yourself plenty of time to review the layout of the fair and schools’ displays and information.
- Visit the schools you are most interested in first.
- Look for useful printed materials to take with you: business cards, brochures, handbooks, etc.
What should I ask the recruiters at the fair?
An informed and focused set of questions will convey to the representative that you are truly interested in graduate school. Your questions allow the representative to avoid generalities and treat you as an individual. Here are a variety of questions that should help you get the most out of the conversations.
- What do you think is unique about your program?
- Are students admitted in both fall and spring semesters?
- Is it possible to work full-time and complete the degree as a part-time student?
- How much does the program cost (tuition, student fees, housing)?
- What types of financial aid are available (fellowships, assistantships, scholarships, loans)?
- Could you tell me more about student life on campus (student organizations, housing, support groups, diversity of the students)?
- What is the location surrounding the school like (mountains, ocean, rural, city)?
- What are the admission requirements (deadline, GPA, undergraduate coursework, entrance exams, experience, interview)?
- What resources are available to help students find positions after graduation?
- Would it be possible for me to arrange a campus visit in which I could meet with admissions representatives, current students, and faculty?
- May I contact you if I have additional questions?
The USC Dornsife Pre-Graduate School Advising Office serves all current USC students and alumni who are considering graduate school. They offer a wide variety of advising services to guide you through the academic and administrative processes necessary to achieve your goals. Advisers are available to meet with you Monday through Friday between 9:00 am – 4:00 pm. Call (213) 740-3800 to schedule an appointment. You can also email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
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