Grad school admission becoming more difficult

Students taking the Graduate Record Examination and applying to graduate school should expect to face more competition. Increasing numbers of graduate school applicants have raised standards for graduate schools, making it one of the most difficult times to get accepted. This year, the UniversityâÄôs Graduate SchoolâÄôs number of students admitted increased by 5 percent, and overall enrollment has increased by 4 percent, said Dean Tsantir , director of admissions for the Graduate School. The number of applicants to graduate school programs at the University has increased every year since fall 2004. Because of the growing number of applicants, the percentage of students admitted has declined each year. Forty-one percent of applicants were admitted four years ago, compared to 35 percent admitted last year. Tsantir said the increasingly competitive job market has led to an increase in applicant numbers. âÄúThere are more positions now that are masterâÄôs required,âÄù he said. âÄúMore advanced training in higher education is becoming increasingly the norm.âÄù Graduate and Professional Student Assembly President Kristi Kremers said the employment possibilities with a bachelorâÄôs degree have changed. âÄúBefore, having an undergraduate degree would open a lot of doors for you and thatâÄôs becoming less common for a lot of professions,âÄù Kremers said. Mark McNutt , spokesman for the Educational Testing Service , the organization that administers the GRE, said a souring economy has historically increased the interest in graduate school. Someone who may be thinking of changing careers might also consider graduate school as an insurance policy for a future career, McNutt said. According to the Council of Graduate Schools , health sciences have experienced the greatest increase in enrollment numbers in the past 10 years. Linda Lindeke , director of graduate studies in the School of Nursing , attributes those numbers to an aging population, resulting in a growing need for health care professionals. Lindeke said the growth could also be because of the personal rewards associated with health care. âÄúWe see people that are coming from business and industry saying, âÄòI actually want to work with people. I want to have an impact on my world, and I can do that in a health profession,âÄô âÄù she said. Tsantir said students considering graduate school should take advantage of research opportunities, internships and maintain good relationships with advisers. Kremers said students should network with professors, study abroad and volunteer in the community to gain experiences in the industry.