Courtesy of Toothpaste for Dinner

It’s that time of year.  College graduation is up on us.  Many seniors are frantically trying to complete all requirements for graduation and many are wondering what to do about the bleak job market.  One very common strategy is to attend graduate school.   After all, college students know how to study and what to expect from academia.  But there are ONLY 3 reasons to attend grad school immediately after college:

  1. First, to enter a profession. If a pre-med student is crystal clear on obtaining the MD degree, then by all means go directly to medical school.  If a college student is determined to go to law school, then go right ahead.  But for the business major, the IR major or the English major…  think twice.
  2. Next, grad school is the right strategy to advance a profession.  That is, the college grad who has 2 or 3 years of work experience and realizes that to move up in their profession they will need an MBA.
  3. Finally, to change a profession: the mid life person who wants to change their career from radio sales to nutrition.  Clearly, that is a well thought out goal and would most definitely require graduate school.

Consider the person who graduated 2 years ago with a degree in public policy.  She was determined to land a job (which she did) and then get her masters degree in public policy.  After working for 2 years, she got another job in private sector marketing research and now realizes she will need an MBA. Thankfully, she worked for 2 years so she could establish a record of professional work experience.

Susan Kennedy is the Founder of Career Treking, a job coaching firm that specializes in helping college students and graduates identify and find the right job. Since 2005, Susan has helped countless college grads find their ideal position and career path, regardless of college major. Susan has also published a book, The Job Coach for Young Professionals. You can find Susan on Facebook and follow her on Twitter at @SusanCareerTrek.