Application Process

Applying to graduate school is similar to the process you went through for college, but be sure to check each school’s website or catalog for specifics and deadlines. In general, you will need to submit:

  • An application
  • A personal statement or statement of purpose
  • A nonrefundable fee
  • A financial aid application
  • Official college transcripts
  • Test scores (usually sent directly from the testing service)
  • Letters of recommendation

Since graduate programs are more focused and in-depth, admissions staff will want to know why you’re interested in their program. Give specific information about your career goals, areas of interest, and how their particular program appeals to you.

The personal statement is an excellent opportunity to show that you’ve thoroughly researched the program and understand what it has to offer. Make sure your prose is concise, and the content is thorough, accurate, organized, and enthusiastic. Among the elements admissions committees look for: writing ability, clarity of goals, level of academic knowledge in the subject area, and maturity. Where possible, give examples of related experience and activities.

For help with your personal statement, make an appointment to meet with one of our career counselors. 

Word to the Wise:

Allow enough time to obtain and submit each application item, and keep copies of everything you send in.


The Center for Career Development encourages students to establish a credential file to house and manage letters of recommendation, transcripts, and related documents.

There are many companies that offer online credential service, but the CCD recommends Interfolio based on feedback from students and faculty members. Interfolio is an online service that provides safe storage and electronic or paper sending of your credentials documents. New clients should open accounts directly with Interfolio.