Advice, networking and a killer buffet

October 18, 2017

Newhouse's annual Master's Open House proves the value of the visit

Deciding what graduate school to attend, and what program to choose, can be daunting. That’s why the Newhouse School holds the annual Master's Open House every fall, inviting prospective graduate students to visit campus, explore Newhouse and meet the faculty teaching in the school’s 11 professional, on-campus graduate programs.

Garrett Calton, a graduate student in the advertising program who attended last year’s open house, stressed the value of an in-person visit over simply checking out a school’s website.

“Meeting the people can give you more confidence during the application process,” Calton says.

Martha Coria, assistant director of professional graduate studies and one of the organizers of the open house, agrees on the importance of an on-campus visit.

“It can really help you to learn the culture of a place,” says Coria. “The ability to ask questions in person is very helpful. And it’s inspiring to see the facilities and hear the testimonials and descriptions of the programs.”

Newhouse Virtual Tour

The open house is a full-day event, and includes tours of the Newhouse School’s state-of-the-art facilities, a presentation on the admission process and meetings with the program directors. One of the highlights of the day is a panel of current Newhouse graduate students sharing their experiences. Last year, this discussion hit on Newhouse’s famous academic “boot camp,” an intense, six-week introduction that kicks off each graduate program.

“A lot of them said the hardest part was boot camp,” Calton says. “‘Alright, you just get over the hump, and then you’re there.’ That was pretty reassuring.”

Every year, 40 to 60 prospective graduate students attend the open house. Calton, who came to the event certain he wanted to go into broadcast and digital journalism, ended up applying to the advertising program instead. He has sage advice for prospective students.

“Keep your options open,” he says. “If you’re looking for something to check out, also do something unrelated.”

After 17 years of organizing the open house, Coria has the event down to a science, as evidenced by the feedback she receives.

“Many have told me how warm and welcoming it felt here,” Coria says. “Most were really impressed by the facilities and the resources that would be available to them [if they attended Newhouse].”

For Calton, though, one of the most memorable things about his open house experience was the food.

“I was pretty pumped that the buffet had so many options,” Calton says, laughing. “They fed me really well.”

This year’s Master's Open House will be held Friday, Nov. 17.