When I made the decision to enter grad school I knew it’d be a difficult and arduous task. I had been out of school a year and knew that I had lost some of the work ethic that had dominated my career as an undergrad. I applied to MSPP early decision and when I found out I got in I was ecstatic- in fact I cancelled all of the other interviews I had at other graduate programs and graciously accepted MSPP’s offer.
Coming in as a young first year was a shock. I had always loved school and the learning process and thought I’d be well prepared after attending Skidmore, a school known to challenge its students. However, no one could have prepared me for the amount of work and readings to be completed as a first year at MSPP. I found myself bombarded with book chapters, articles, and papers. I was excited to be back in school and learning, but the sheer magnitude of work to be done was overwhelming. I found I had to change my work habits a bit and organize myself in a whole new way to get it done. I heard second and third year students tell me it would get easier, but in the moment I couldn’t see how. But it did and I promise you it will!
As a second year I can tell you that classes seem like a breeze compared to first. I’m not sure if the work load is less or if I’m just a better student after completing my first year. Plus no more stats! ;) Also, being a second year is fun! You feel a bit older and mature after having completed your first year classes and practicum, you become a more confident clinician and student, and you know your classmates and professors on a more personal level. It becomes less about the overwhelming amount of work and more about how you can better yourself as a person and a professional and let me tell you- your peers and faculty are there to help you along the way.
So for those of you in your first year even though it’s hard to see second year is easier. For those of you who are applying or have already applied I’m not going to sugar coat it- grad school is hard, but so worth it! If you get accepted you know that the faculty and the school itself knows you can succeed and that you’ll be a great clinician someday! So just keep telling yourself that. And hey, if you get through the application process and eventually your first year, I promise you can get through anything!
P.S. Happy Valentine’s Day! <3