Diversity in Graduate School

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Last updated on June 14th, 2018 by our Product Team

Your undergraduate and graduate studies will offer you a chance to stretch your understanding of the world. This will not only happen in the classroom but also outside of the classroom, during your free time. Even if your program is small, you will inevitably meet people who are not like you. And that’s a good thing. Education is not just about what happens when the professor speaks; it’s about the whole picture, the entire experience, which involves the choices you make about the people you surround yourself with when class is dismissed.

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Keep an open mind, as student diversity is a gift. At larger programs, you will likely meet people from all across the globe—and every one of these perspectives is vital to the melting pot of graduate school life. If you had a homogeneous perspective, it would be boring and one-dimensional and eventually, your work would reflect your mindset. If you are intolerant of people coming from backgrounds different from your own, you will miss out on numerous learning opportunities to grow.

In graduate school, the world comes to you in an enriching way. For all students, exposure to and embrace of diversity is a great asset. For those in creative fields, you may be able to learn about specific cultural aesthetics from a classmate rather than having to travel halfway across the globe for similar inspiration. For those in business, having a conversation with a colleague could lead to insights about effective international approaches to business. Diversity is beneficial to everyone regardless of the field you are in, so talk to your classmates, listen, and frame every interaction as an opportunity to learn.

It’s also important that you realize what you have to offer. Wherever you’re from, you will have much to provide your classmates, too. Share a sporting event or offer to cook your favorite meal for a classmate—or just talk about a childhood memory.

Many students who attend graduate school leave more open minded than when they began. The rigors of studying with students from all over the country (and world) has exposed them to different cultures and mindsets and they are forever changed in some way. In graduate school, the world knocks; open the door.

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