Thursday, April 30, 2009

Should Michigan become a Private University? has a newspaper article about flagship public universities, with special reference to U-M. The emerging question is should these state universities should become private under this struggling economy. After all, most operate as quasi-public institutions as funding from their state governments continues to diminishes each year.
Michigan's long-serving 19th-century president James Angell used to say that the school provided "an uncommon education for the common man." But many are starting to wonder if that mission is still possible. And Michigan is not the only public university in crisis. As states across the country face budget shortfalls, leading schools like the universities of Wisconsin, North Carolina and Virginia increasingly depend on support from outside their home states, either in the form of philanthropy or in top tuition rates paid by a growing number of wealthy out-of-state students. The result has already been a quasi-privatization of some of the nation's top research institutions and the economic stratification of their student bodies.

And the U-M President, Mary Sue Coleman, commented below that most admissions applications come from outside the state of Michigan.
As schools like Michigan struggle to make up falling state contributions, however, fewer students like Stadt are getting slots in entering classes. Out-of-state students pay $33,000 in tuition at Michigan — nearly three times the amount that residents bring in — and those extra dollars are needed more than ever. Non-residents now make up 37% of undergraduates at the university; add graduate students and nearly half the university's students comes from out-of-state. A leading public university like University of California at Berkeley, by contrast, only pulls 8% of its undergraduates from outside California.

You can also read more about this in the U-M President's address, "Why U-M Must Stay a Public Institution."

Do you think University of Michigan should become private?

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Best Graduate Admissions Books

The admissions process is over, and I got into my first-choice social work program. However, I would have not achieved my results if I did not use graduate admissions books. Once I gathered all my materials, I read chapters explaining what I should and should not do. I also had several people to proofread my documents.

I applied late in the graduate admissions process, so I didn't want to spend too much money. If you want to save costs, get the best bargain books. They provide step-by-step information on how to write personal statements, contact professors for letters of recommendation, and much more.

I would recommend the following books below:
I also like personality assessment tests. These tools reveal several potential careers that best fit your values. You can use the results to search graduate and professional programs. They only serve as guides; you must pick which field truly matches your interests.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

NYTimes: Work-Study - They'll Work for Education

There is a New York Times article about the future of federal work-study. University of Michigan is also referenced. I depended on federal work-study and campus employment when I was in college. I come from a middle-class background, and I needed the money to buy groceries, pay bills, and eat out with friends. I hope to receive similar financial aid when I start graduate school. Getting paid to go to school is an excellent deal. I don't think too many families will deny it this year.

Monday, April 27, 2009

NYTimes: In Grim Job Market, Student Loans Are a Costly Burden

The New York Times has a very informative article (April 18, 2009) about the costly burden of student loans.

They bought into the notion that if they went to college — never mind the debt — their degree would lead to a lucrative job. And repaying their student loans would never be a problem.

But the economic crisis has turned those assumptions on their ear as thousands of recent graduates have been unable to find jobs or are earning too little to cover the payments for loans that are sometimes as high as $50,000.

The result has been rising default rates for student loans. And unlike other debts, student loans cannot easily be renegotiated.

Almost every college graduate will have some form of student loan debt in their lifetime. If you don't believe me, here are the statistics. How has student loan debt impacted your life?

2010 U.S. News and World Report Graduate School Rankings

The 2010 U.S. News and World Report Graduate School Rankings are finally online and available for purchase.

University of Michigan School of Social Work is ranked #2.

University of Michigan School of Information is ranked #5. Its subfields are #2 for Information Systems, #2 for Archives and Preservation, and #4 for Digital Librarianship.

University of Michigan is ranked #2 for Social Policy under Public Affairs.

University of Michigan is ranked #5 for Non-Profit under Business.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Admitted into Graduate School!

I realized in late February I wanted to attend graduate school this upcoming fall. I was employed in a office position at the time, but I knew my situation wouldn't improve financially unless I return to school and get my master's degree. My vacation time was over. I was now ready to become a graduate student.

I quickly gathered my materials and contacted my former college professors. I submitted my FAFSA and GRE scores. I knew I could not meet the priority deadlines for first consideration of scholarships. I didn't care about that. I funded my entire undergraduate education with loans, work-study, and scholarships. I had to become a graduate student. God would take care of my financial aid situation.

Here are my admissions results (via e-mail):

  • 04/12/09: University of Michigan MSW (Accepted)
  • 04/16/09: University of Michigan MSI (Accepted)
  • 04/17/09: Columbia University MSW (Rejected)
  • 05/07/09: Washington University in St. Louis MSW (Accepted)

I celebrated the news with my family and friends. Columbia and WUSTL were my safety net schools in case I did not receive admission to the University of Michigan. I am not surprised about my rejection from Columbia. Both schools have excellent social work programs, but I did not want to live in those cities. Michigan offered the best fit for my overall academic and social needs.

I won't learn about my financial aid information until mid-May. Nevertheless, I am very pleased with the admissions results because I am now an incoming dual-degree graduate student at the University of Michigan! Go Blue!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

PBS Video: More Young People Applying to Graduate School

PBS Newshour recently reported a special news coverage on more young people applying to graduate school this year (April 6). The national economy has been so bad that college graduates are facing a tighter job market. Current companies continue to shed thousands of jobs. Many students believe if they can ride out the economy, their employment prospects would improve too. You can watch the six-minute clip below.

Friday, April 24, 2009


Hello visitors! Welcome to my new blog about graduate student life at the University of Michigan!

A brief biography about myself:
After receiving my bachelor's degree in education and social policy from Northwestern University, I took a break from school to explore other interests. My hobbies are listening to music, reading novels, traveling, volunteering, exercising, graphic design, and blogging! I have traveled extensively across the Upper Midwest and East Coast. I love playing tennis and volleyball. Overall, I am a funny, smart, and creative person who likes to explore the unknown.

The University of Michigan goes by many monikers:
U-M, U of M, Michigan. Its mascot is the Wolverines, and its school colors are maize and blue. It was founded in 1817, and is considered one of the original Public Ivys. More than 70% of the university's departments, programs, and institutes are ranked in the top ten in the nation. Located on the Huron River in the city of Ann Arbor, the flagship campus has one of the largest number of living alumni in the world.