Publication Date


Document Type


Committee Members

Suzanne Franco (Committee Member), Lawrence Mrozek (Committee Co-chair), Joanne Risacher (Committee Member), Charles Ryan (Committee Co-chair)

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


The purpose of this research study was to explore the issues surrounding Millennial students who go directly into graduate school after completing an undergraduate degree including what influenced this decision and how the students characterized the experience. Participants were interviewed and several themes emerged from this study: feeling not ready for the real world or qualified to work, differences and difficulties of graduate life compared to undergraduate life, more academic support is needed before and during graduate school, relationships with parents were evolving towards independence, the importance of grades, lack of campus involvement in graduate school, overcoming personal and academic difficulties in graduate school, and specific or still undecided future plans. The recommendations for higher education were to evaluate the approach towards this group of graduate students, to develop a graduate school preparatory program and a mentor program, and to make a concentrated effort to engage this population on campus.

Page Count


Department or Program

Department of Leadership Studies in Education and Organizations

Year Degree Awarded