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Trumbull News Detail

Master's Students Encourage Undergraduates at the Stark Campus to Consider Graduate School

Posted May. 22, 2013

Communication studies students discuss graduate school

Graduate students from the School of Communication Studies on Kent’s campus shared their graduate school experience with communication studies undergraduate students at Kent State’s Stark campus in April.

School of Communication Studies Associate Professor and Graduate Coordinator for Kent’s campus, Dr. Mei-Chen Lin wanted to bring communication studies graduate students to the Stark campus to speak with undergraduates about what graduate school has to offer. 

“Typically I try to bring in two or three current graduate students from various departments related to communication to speak in my Senior Seminar class,” said Stark campus Assistant Professor and Coordinator for Communication Studies Dr. Erin Hollenbaugh. “This semester, Lin offered to bring some students from the Kent campus to speak to my class. We opened the class to everyone, making it a true event. I am thrilled that so many students were willing to come to Stark to talk about their experiences in graduate school.”

The information session focused on four topics: What will you do with your master’s; undergraduate to graduate student transition; research at the graduate level; and experiences with assistantships. This was the second information session the School of Communication Studies has hosted at the Stark campus. The first session focused on logistics, academic requirements and what options are available for students.

“Speaking as one of the undergraduate students myself, I got a lot out of it,” said Giselle Robeck, senior communication studies major and Stark’s communication studies spring intern. “Especially since the first information session spurred me into applying for the fall semester after all. I had no idea what I was getting myself into, so it was helpful to hear stories from those whom I was about to follow behind. Other undergraduate students in attendance asked a fair amount of questions getting a lot of other information that we might not have thought of ahead of time.”

The main objective of the sessions was for students to get a better understanding of the graduate program’s demands and what to expect while working in an assistantship position.

“Teaching is an intimidating idea and can be scary without hearing about someone else’s experiences as a student teacher,” she said.

“Giselle actually decided to apply for Kent’s Master of Arts program in Communication Studies after hearing from Dr. Lin and these graduate students,” Hollenbaugh said. “I’m happy to report she has been accepted and is going to be on assistantship in the Fall! While it’s hard for students nearing the end of their bachelor’s degrees to consider investing in more education, the fact is that many of them will find themselves pursuing a graduate degree in the future. So it would benefit anyone to learn more about what graduate school has to offer.”

As part of Robeck’s internship in Spring 2013, she was responsible for launching a social media presence for the Stark campus communication studies program where she created content to post online. Robeck recorded the information sessions and divided them into smaller videos by topic to post online.

“I divided the sessions into digestible chunks to make it easier for people to find the information without having to watch the entire hour long video,” she said. “Some of the information in these sessions is stuff I had never known about before, and if I had I might have made my decision and application sooner. I almost missed out on a great opportunity because this information hadn't been made available to me more easily.”

To access the student information videos, visit the Stark Communication Studies Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/CommAtStark. A new video topic will be released on the page every Friday over the next six weeks.