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Thread: Chances for getting accepted to grad school

  1. #1
    Member
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    Chances for getting accepted to grad school

    Hello everyone! I am so glad I found this forum for advice.
    I am 28, have a BA from the University of South Florida in Political Science with a GPA of 2.95 for my last two years. Have zero experience in planning.
    I am taking the GRE this August and I am extremely nervous that I wont get accepted anywhere with my grades. I want to do this so much, but feel that my mistakes in school are catching up to me. Any hope for acceptance at any of the Florida schools?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Cyburbian
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    Hm... I don't know about Florida schools (didn't look in that region) but I know A LOT of schools would like to see at least a 3.0, if not higher.

    I would definitely concentrate on rocking the GRE and putting together a fabulous personal statement with strong letters of recommendation.

    Grades aren't the only thing schools look at but just make sure the rest of your application is top notch.

  3. #3
    Cyburbian
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    Oh, and one more thing. Maybe work on getting some planning experience before you apply. I know paid internships are hard to come by right now but see if an agency or firm would let you volunteer for a couple hours each week. Perhaps get involved with a local non-profit geared towards housing/econ development/etc. to show your interest.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally posted by salieri2121 View post
    Hello everyone! I am so glad I found this forum for advice.
    I am 28, have a BA from the University of South Florida in Political Science with a GPA of 2.95 for my last two years. Have zero experience in planning.
    I am taking the GRE this August and I am extremely nervous that I wont get accepted anywhere with my grades. I want to do this so much, but feel that my mistakes in school are catching up to me. Any hope for acceptance at any of the Florida schools?

    Thanks.
    Ive spoken with admissions departments at a number of schools in New England that reflect cindyg86s comments about professional experience and GRE scores outshining substandard GPAs. However, there are a few select schools that adhere to the 3.0 GPA standard with very little waver. Have you tried contacting the admissions department at the schools that youre interested in? They might be able to give you a better idea of what they're looking for in a Graduate degree candidate.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian
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    Another option that you could possibly do is take classes at one of the planning schools you're interested in as a non-degree student. This would increase your GPA, show your interest in the school, and also demonstrate your ability to handle graduate school. Or you could try to pursue a GIS certificate at a local school which would provide you a useful planning skill and possibly set you apart from other potential students.

    All three Florida schools look somewhat competitive (particularly FSU) but the admission process is completely subjective, so as people have said, letters of intent, recommendations, and GRE can easily make up for a mediocre GPA. Just I'd make sure to try to explain your low GPA in your letter of intent.

    Worst case scenario, you may have to look at out of state schools for your planning education. A 2.95 should definitely not be a deal breaker but it is always best to keep your options open.

  6. #6
    A good GRE will help compensate for a low GPA. Also, a very strong personal statement detailing the applicant's interest in planning should help balance against a lack of experience.

    Overall GPA might be used instead of upper division GPA, so hopefully that works to your benefit.

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