Graduate School: How to Prepare Yourself
There are several ways that you can prepare yourself now, for your graduate career. Graduate schools are looking for students with well rounded science backgrounds and experience in research. As the number of students applying to graduate school has increased, so has the competition. It is extremely important for you to stand out from the crowd. Start now.
Participate in Undergraduate Research
Undergraduate Research Program is the best preparation for graduate school. It will give you a chance to see what graduate school is like by interacting with graduate students and faculty and participating in a research group. It will also help you decide which areas of your field are most interesting to you.
Take a Variety of Courses
It is important not to get locked into one area. Try to take as many well rounded courses as you can. If you are interested in one area of science, think about which other areas may broadly affect this interest. Then try a course in the new area. As science becomes more inter-disciplinary, it is important to understand the physical laws which govern your biochemistry.
Math, Math, Math
For Chemistry, Physics, and increasingly Biology you need calculus and algebra as tools in your everyday activities. The more the better. Graduate schools are prepared to teach you advanced science, they will not take the time to improve your calculus skills.
Writing and Speaking Skills
You will need speaking skills for interviews or giving scientific presentations. These skills make you stand out in a crowd of applicants. Your writing skills will come shining through in your personal statement and will serve you well in the future for writing grants and papers.