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Graduate education is the way to grow

By Dairian Heard
Staff Writer

Over the past year, Georgetown has had financial struggles. This is due to a lot of things, one of them being low enrollment. Georgetown is a great school to attend, but we have to make people outside of our community believe it.

We have to offer programs that cater to the needs of the prospective students. Stop right there! I know you’re thinking high school seniors, right? No. I’m thinking of graduate students.

Georgetown’s graduate program has been a huge hit. In the December commencement ceremony a majority of the students were from the graduate program. In fact, the graduate program has almost half as many students as the undergraduate program. Offering a Master’s in Education has brought a decent amount of students to our campus. Just imagine if we offered a Master’s degree in other areas. That would bring a larger amount of students and funds to our school.

I have a few ideas on what types of degrees we could offer to attract even more bright and intelligent graduate students. Because the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) field is blossoming by the minute, it would be wise to offer something along those lines.

My opinion would be to choose engineering. Engineering can be used in so many different ways and for so many different careers. Engineering, like other sciences, challenges the mind to think beyond the norm and to help create innovations that will help our world run a little bit better. Georgetown would attract a lot of people if they decided to offer this degree.

Another would be nursing. So many students go to University of Kentucky for their nursing program. If we offered it here, we would have a lot of our undergraduates who would consider staying on campus longer to continue their education.

Another pro to expanding our graduate program is that we would create more of a “university-like” atmosphere. Most students like Georgetown for its small, close knit, family-like feel. I believe combining that great attribute along with more opportunities for higher education would help Georgetown gain more students and status.

We may attract more seasoned students through this expansion process, so we should cater to the specific needs they may have. By seasoned, I mean those adults who put their education to the side while they started families and careers. Now, they want to go back to school to further their education. Offering more night classes through the graduate program would show the community and prospective students that we care about the families they have built and the time it takes to raise one.

We have a lot of parents going back to school after their kids are at a certain age. I know this from experience. My mother went back to school when I was in the first grade to get her Master’s in Public Administration.

Back then I didn’t know why she did it, but now I realize she did it to give me a better future. If we as a Georgetown community can show that we care about the families of our students, they will feel much better about taking a break from their daily lives to continue their education with us.

I’m sure most of you know that getting a Master’s degree in anything can add some sort of boost to your resume. Our professors, parents and mentors tell us this everyday.

Because this statement is so true, Georgetown as a community should practice what we preach. Bringing a variety of graduate programs to the front door of students would make them want to stay at Georgetown. We would be expanding our community with current students as well as bringing funds to the institution. With the help of a larger graduate program Georgetown would become a much more educationally diverse place.