When students think about earning their master’s degree, the first thought that comes to mind is “Is it really worth it?”
According to collegesurfing.com, the average cost of a graduate degree can range from $30,000 to $120,000, depending on the length of the program, the college, and the type of degree.
That’s a big chunk of change.
There are many considerations to think of when you are considering earning your graduate degree if you are going to determine whether it is really worth the effort.
- Can you afford it? With such a high price on education, the most important consideration is whether or not you can actually afford to continue your education. Do you have the extra money sitting around or will you be paying off student debt for ten or twenty years after you graduate? Do you qualify for any scholarships or grants that could reduce or eliminate the cost of your higher degree? Consider all of this when you are determining whether a graduate degree is worth it the cost.
- Do you see a graduate education as something valuable? For many students, the benefit of obtaining their master’s degree far outweighs the cost. They believe in the value of deepening their intellect, improving their way of thinking, expanding their knowledge, and appreciating life more. For these students, graduate school is priceless.
- What are the long term benefits? A graduate degree, especially in the current economy, does not guarantee employment, but you will most likely be more employable with a graduate degree and will be able to earn a higher salary over time. This means that if you do exit college with any student debt, you will be able to pay it off more quickly than you would with a lower degree and lower-paying employment.
Graduate School Scholarships
- Graduate Student Scholar Award - Are you a member of Sigma Iota Epsilon (SIE) and earning your masters degree or doctorate? If so, you may qualify for this scholarship, awarded by the SIE National Office. Students must submit a 15 to 20 page essay with tables, graphs, and bibliographic information to the National Office. Previously used papers are accepted, however, they must be clean copies. The papers will be judged by the National Office staff and the first place winner will receive a $1,250 scholarship and a plaque for recognition. Second place winners will win $500.
- Library Degree for Law School Graduated - The American Association of Law Libraries sponsors a scholarship for graduate law students who demonstrate financial need and are obtaining their degree from a library school. Students can earn up to $1,500.
- Journalism Graduate Scholarship - Google provides graduate students seek their journalism degree with a $20,000 scholarship. This scholarship targets students who are able to create new and innovative projects that deal with ethnic, gender, or geographic diversity, with a focus on digital journalism.
- Future Teacher Scholarships - The Appleton Jackson Parks Future Teacher Scholarship is designed to assist graduate students majoring in education. Student can obtain up to $1,000 and can apply from October 1st to December 31st each year.
I can’t tell you whether graduate school is worth the cost; that decision is up to you.
However, with the right grants and scholarships, you may be able to reduce the amount of money you need for your degree, and making the decision an easy one.