Orientation: University vs. Graduate/Professional

By: smahemtecks

There are a few interesting differences between orientation for universities (commonly known as frosh week) and orientation for professional or advanced graduate programs.

I have recently just experienced my advanced graduate program orientation and have been through my own undergraduate orientation experience.

What is a advanced graduate program?
These programs are offered by universities in the form of continuing education or from colleges and usually is one or two years. What makes advanced grad programs really beneficial is because it provides specific training for a specific profession or skill. For example, a B.Sc student could apply for a clinical research associate certificate program. Not only are you separating yourself from all the fresh undergraduates but you can tell employers that you can bring a specific skill set that you have learned specifically for clinical research positions.

Back to the orientations, for high school transition to university, frosh week is one of the most exciting, adrenaline pumping week you can have. It focus more on having fun, meeting new students and to get to know your school. I feel that this type of orientation strays away from the focus of academics. Why will I say that? Well you will understand in a bit.

For advanced graduate programs, you have already received an undergraduate degree, people are more mature and have a set goal in what they want from their career. In general, everyone is just more focused on the academics or on how to succeed.

During my orientation for an advanced graduate program, I did not know what to expect and when the orientation was professional and focused. It motivated me and put the ‘work hard study hard’ mentality back on (which I have left behind after finishing undergrad).

I am currently in the process of transitioning from being a university student to a more professional career driven student. From the young world to the real world. I find it very interesting that within less than 4 years, the learning environment, atmosphere and people can change this dramatically.

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