Graduate Admissions Advice in Challenging Times

In a recent interview, comedian and writer Mel Brooks said it best "We can get through this stuff…” Although, we are going through challenging and unprecedented times with COVID19, certain aspects of our lives continue to go on. This includes working (from home for many of us), cooking and eating (a lot in my case), and adapting to new environments and technologies. This may also mean developing new skills either formally or informally.

With an uncertain economy and job market, you may be thinking of how to make yourself more marketable and develop new skills. A graduate degree, particularly in the field of business, may help you achieve that goal. While we cannot predict the future, it is OK to start thinking about your next step in advancing your education. Business programs are adapting to the times and the admissions staff at UIC Business can help answer your questions and alleviate any anxiety you may have about pursuing a graduate program, including by live chat on any of our webpages.

First and foremost, it’s OK to be nervous about the thought of pursuing a graduate program. Speaking from personal experience, I put off starting for quite a long time and then during the first night of my MBA class I thought to myself what I have I gotten into. Many other prospective students have the same feeling. Pursuing a graduate degree requires a sacrifice of time and money, but it is an investment in yourself and your future career.

If you have started to think about the application process, one reservation you may have is about taking the GMAT or GRE currently. Both exams have at-home testing options and are nearly identical to what you would take in a testing center. Since the scoring and exam qualities are the same, we will accept the at-home tests. It is also strong possibility that companies will need additional resources in data, technology, and supply chain. Our programs in Business Analytics, Management Information Systems, and Supply Chain and Operations Management will provide a valuable skillset to you and be in demand by employers.

There are resources for you to be successful as well. Faculty in our graduate business programs will challenge you academically, while providing mentorship and helping you achieve success. The Business Career Center can help with resume development, mock interviews, and access to top employers. The professional network and student organizations are also a way for you to grow academically and make meaningful connections. A side benefit to being back in school is that affordable health insurance is also something you have access to. 

Whether you are considering starting this fall (and yes there still is time to apply) or later, now is great time to explore your options for a graduate business degree. The admissions team can help answer your questions and connect you with current students and faculty in the program. While this has been a challenging and unique time for us, many colleges and universities in the U.S. are over 300 years old now. They have survived, adapted, and thrived through difficult times, and we will “get through this stuff.”  

To connect with us to discuss the next steps toward your graduate business degree via webinars and virtual lunch and learns, visit business.uic.edu/graduate-programs/graduate-events/ or reach us by email at gradbusiness@uic.edu.