Prepare for the worst. Or best. Just prepare.

Despite all the work our applicants put into researching graduate school options, there will surely be some admitted students who will race around in April, frantically gathering information as if the thought had never occurred to them that they might go to graduate school in the fall.  Or that they might need to choose among several good options.  Please don’t be one of those people.

This is a perfect time to prepare for the next phase of your application/admission process.  How will you make a decision if you are admitted to several of your preferred schools?  What will you do if you’re not admitted to your top schools?

Beyond the decision-making process, what do you need to know that you don’t know yet?  For example, do you have a good understanding of the curricula of Fletcher and other schools to which you’ve applied?  Naturally we want all of our admitted students to enroll here, but we don’t want them to enroll if Fletcher isn’t a good match for their interests.  Prepare by checking out our academic program.

What about some of those assumptions you’ve made along the way?  “If I go to Fletcher, my spouse will find a job in the area,” for example.  Is there some prep work you can start now, in order to make the assumption become a reality?

And, perhaps you have thought to yourself:  “If I’m admitted to graduate school, I’ll brush up on English/second language/economics/statistics.”  Do you really have so little confidence that waiting is the best strategy?  Why not start working on it now?

There’s lots more to prepare, but my final suggestion for today is to consider your financial situation.  Fletcher and its peers all offer some full-tuition scholarships but, to be completely honest, most of our students receive scholarships for less than the cost of tuition.  How are you going to fund that gap?  And how big a gap can you fund?  If you haven’t already worked this out, please don’t wait until April to start.  Check out the scholarship information on Fletcher’s page, and the loan information on the Tufts Student Services page to get you started.  And while you’re at it, stop spending and start saving.  In September, you’ll be glad to have the extra cash from having cut your daily coffee allowance.

In conclusion, dear blog readers, though your admissions fate is still unknown, it’s time to prepare.

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