Graduate students are busy people. They are busy with their coursework. They are busy with their research. They are busy with their thesis. And in some cases they are busy with their family and work life.
It is important though that graduate students take time out of their busy schedules to become involved in organizations that will help them while they are graduate students and beyond. Colleges and universities have so many student organizations to choose from that it can be difficult to even narrow down organizations that may be most beneficial to a graduate student and their goals.
While this is definitely not an all inclusive list, here are 5 graduate organizations that students should consider becoming a part of to add to their graduate student experience to help shape and refine them as professionals. This list is no particular order.
#1 Part-Time MBA Association
This organization is dedicated to representing MBA students that go to school on a part-time basis. Students who are earning their MBA on a part-time basis have different concerns than those who are attending a full-time program. This organization acts as the liaison between the students and the college or university. As a member of this organization students are able to take part-time MBA student issues to the school of business administration and its faculty. This organization works for the good of the part-time student body to help improve the quality of the education that they receive, the amount and quality of academic support, and the professional services and advice that students can receive. By joining this group MBA students will find a sense of community among their peers, while continuously trying to improve student relations.
#2 MBA Association
The MBA Association's goal is to provide a community where graduate students can interact through activities and services that allow their members to grow as students and as professionals in the business world. This group acts as a liaison between current students, Alumni and faculty to help students define their career goals, strengthen their skills, and develop a strong network of professional peers.
#3 Graduates As Parents
According to the Census Bureau the amount of graduate students attending college that are also parents increases by 60 percent each year. By becoming a member of this organization, graduate students will find a community of their peers that are balancing their family life with their school life. Through their peers members can pick up pertinent information regarding daycare, how to balance their lives, tips and trick for the juggling act, etc. With all of the stress that being a parent brings combined with all of the stress that being a graduate students brings, this group will allow students to de-stress their lives by surrounding themselves with like-minded people who are going through the same challenges that they are.
#4 Graduate Student Government
Graduate Student Government works on graduate student's behalves in the area of student affairs and financial affairs that affect graduate students. This organization is the liaison between graduate students and the university on matters with housing, parking, fees, and transportation. This organization also helps students to learn the ins and outs of running an organization, including problem-solving resolution skills. It also provides a place for students to interact with leaders in the organization and in the school to acquire and foster their leadership skills.
#5 Graduate Students in _____________ (insert specialization here)
Whatever the graduate student's specialization is, they should also consider joining the graduate student association for their specialization. The goal of these organizations is to provide a community where graduate students specializing in a particular field can interact through activities and services that allow their members to grow as students and as professionals in their field. These groups also act as liaisons between current students, Alumni and faculty to help students define their career goals, strengthen their skills, and develop a strong network of professional peers.