Tips for Parents Considering Graduate School

by A Guest Author

Many people do not attempt to tackle grad school until later in their lives. Often, older, returning students are already deeply involved with their careers and family. How can a person manage to balance all of this activity? The challenge of being a good parent and a good student may be difficult, but it is not impossible. Here are some tips to make parenting and grad school fit together.

Time Management

Many older students believe that since they have been out working in the “real world” graduate school will be a breeze. This is not quite true. Yes, you will find studying much easier than you did as an undergrad, but do not underestimate the time it will take to complete a grad program. Implementing a good time-management strategy should be one of the first things you do. This means you should clear out any extraneous and unneeded events, activities, people, and places from your schedule. Organize the bulk of your time around your family and your studies. You may lose a few friends along the way, but your family will stay intact.

Graduate School is Your Career

You should apply yourself to your studies as if it were a full-time career. During vacation breaks, keep yourself busy with extra self-directed study so you don’t lose your momentum, or your clarity.

Take Care of Yourself and Your Family

Chances are if you have school-age children you will be exposed to every illness that floats into your town. It’s important that you keep yourself and your family healthy so that you all can finish school successfully. Stick to regular and early bedtimes and specific study times. Your home environment should be peaceful and all events evenly paced.

Campus Family Housing 

As a parent and grad student, you may want to consider married, or family housing options. Not only will this type of housing be more prudent financially, it affords you the opportunity to meet others in a similar situation. You will have access to babysitters, and may even make long-lasting friendships.

Summer Activities for Your Children

More than likely, you will have to attend classes during your child’s summer break. Fortunately, many universities organize programs for children right on campus. Take full advantage of any and all family programs that your university offers.

Be Discriminating

Since you will have so much on your plate as a grad student and parent, be picky about what you decide to participate in as far as seminars, workshops, fellowships and assistantships, etc. You will need to make yourself visible, but be discriminating about how visible you can be without compromising your relationship with your family. Look for steady mentors who will give you good recommendations, and let go of the others. Remember, this is your special time and you have earned the right to be particular about whom you choose to associate.

About The Author

Amanda Greene is Brand Manager at RHL, leading online supplier of dorm bedding.

This post was written by A Guest Author

This post was written by a guest author. If you have high quality, useful information to share with students, send us an email or click Write For Us to learn more. And in case you're wondering - yes, you can promote yourself in this fancy author byline.

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