SRU’s graduate program enrolled over 1,000 students this year, bringing in a grand total of 1,045 students, which is the largest number of graduate students to date.
The rise is largely due to the demand by students for more higher education programs. More and more jobs require a master’s degree. Brandi Weber-Mortimer, Director of Graduate Admissions said that there is no such thing as being overqualified when it comes to searching for jobs.
“Companies are going for the more qualified employees,” Weber-Mortimer said.
SRU currently offers 30 graduate programs. The most popular degree programs are ones that give students a master’s degree in education.
Other available programs are ones focusing criminal justice, counseling and environmental science.
Online classes are also available in a majority of programs.
On-campus classes involve mostly physical therapy and education.
A blended program is also offered, involving a combination of lecture and online classes, covering a variety of studies such as English, business and education.
Programs can be completed either part or full time. Most of the programs are completable within a year if taken full time, however some programs may take up to two years.
These programs are geared toward students who want to go straight from undergrad to graduate. Those who have accumulated 90 credits or more and hold at least a 2.75 GPA are able to apply to take graduate credits during their senior year of undergrad.
“We want students to feel successful,” said Weber-Mortimer.
She explained that it’s better for students to graduate undergraduate and then go straight into graduate school, as this allows students to stay in the correct mindset.
SRU also offers graduate students the opportunity to be put into leadership roles through a graduate assistantship (GA). GAs must work 17.5 hours per week for a department on campus in return for a $4,000 academic year stipend and a nine credit waiver.
The SRU Graduate Admissions Office held a fair on Thursday from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. for in the Smith Student Center Theater for students interested in learning more about graduate schools. Several graduate schools like Westminster College, Edinboro University and Point Park University were present.