Author: Phillip T’ien
With the incoming class of 2020 beginning their program in a few short weeks, students are likely starting to feel the pressure of entering graduate school. Looking back at my time at Dalhousie, it’s hard to believe that it was already two years ago that I was experiencing my first day jitters. To help manage this, here are a few tips to ensure you start the program on the right foot.
Your first day in a graduate program may seem quite intimidating at first glance. New requirements and expectations are set, such as a 70% minimum requirement for passing. In addition, a hectic intensive first summer awaits the class.
While it is normal to feel some stress due to entering a new environment, be excited for the amazing opportunity ahead. The summer may seem overwhelming at first, but the intense schedule really works to bring the cohort together.
Although you will be meeting your entire class on your first day, a great way to prepare prior to this is to reach out to your cohort ahead of time. Don’t be afraid to ask a future classmate to go for coffee. Better yet, make a post in your Facebook group inviting the class to go watch the game or grab a drink. Seeing some familiar faces will help shake the stress of your first few days.
Check Out the Campus
With the summer arriving in full bloom in the coming weeks, take some time to explore Dalhousie’s beautiful campus. While you will be familiarized with certain buildings quite quickly (such as the Rowe and the Student Union Building), feel free to explore other areas as well.
The Wallace McCain Learning Commons has fantastic study rooms with large whiteboards, and the Killam Library has the “Grad Pad,” an area dedicated exclusively to graduate students. Don’t forget to also scout out nearby cafes and food joints.
Get to Know your Upper Classmates
Don’t hesitate to get to know the members of the class of 2019. Although many are scattered across Canada on their current residencies, some members will be coming back to Halifax for orientation week to greet all of the program’s newcomers. Furthermore, they’re all available on social media. Feel free to reach out to them in order to get some insights on their first-year experiences, see if they have study tips or notes they are willing to share, or get some information on their residency.
Likewise, don’t be afraid to reach out to alumni of the program. The CRMBA has a very close-knit alumni base, who are always happy to pass along advice from their own experiences.
Interested in learning more about Dalhousie’s 22 month Corporate Residency MBA? Check out more information about the program.