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Grad School Feed - Apr 10th, 2008
Get the Masters of Your Domain: Should You Go to Graduate School?
By Steve Ander
You’ve spent a lot of time in school. You played through elementary school. You hormonally survived middle school. You worked hard to act cool during high school while making good grades. And finally, you worked harder than in high school, and played harder than in elementary school, while you were in college.

PHEW! Now you are either going to be in the real world or you are already there, and you think that the academic environment is a thing of the past. You’re making money, you have hobbies, you’re getting more sleep – how could life be any better? Should you really go back to school?

In short: YES! But of course, there are always exceptions; for some people, the costs – opportunity cost, financial cost, emotional cost, search costs – outweigh the benefits of going to graduate school. But it has been the experience of the author that most people exaggerate these costs (make sure to read future GTS articles that outline the fictions of these costs). However, many people just focus in on these mythical costs which prevent them from realizing the unlimited benefits.

Specifically, graduate school can:
  • Advance your career. Look at how many of your bosses have graduate degrees.
  • Enhance your career. When you study a discipline in-depth, you gain special expertise that increases your responsibility at work.
  • Generate residual benefits. Graduate school can give you essential secondary skills and benefits, like expanding your network, honing your writing and research skills, and providing greater teamwork opportunities.
  • Increase your earning capacity. It’s a fact: Graduates with advanced degrees make more money than those without.
  • Provide relief from the working world. Work getting you down? Needing to expand your horizons? Graduate school is it.
  • Exercise your mind. Sudokus and crossword puzzles can only do so much: In graduate school, you’ll gain exposure to some of the sharpest minds and literature in your chosen field.
  • Command respect. Think about it this way: When you ask someone what they do and they say they are in grad school, how do you feel?

These are just some of the many benefits of graduate school. To be cliché, the sky is the limit for your mind and your bank account. So, when your mind journeys to the idea of going to graduate school, zero in on the benefits which can last you forever while the costs will probably only be short-term. What are you waiting for?
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