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Graduate Assistantships Support Students’ Academic and Professional Growth

By Gaye Hill | Published Tue, February 16, 2021

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Earning a graduate degree offers numerous professional benefits, including career advancement, new career options, and increased earnings. Through Meredith’s Graduate Assistantship Scholarship Program, students who are selected as graduate assistants benefit from both paying reduced tuition and gaining significant professional experience. 

Graduate assistants (GA) spend ten hours per week assisting with teaching and/or research activities. They can serve in this role for up to two years while they complete their graduate program. As a result, GAs can

  • gain further instruction in techniques in a preferred field
  • hone research skills
  • acquire pedagogical experience necessary for an academic career
  • develop professional skills including leadership, interpersonal effectiveness, and performance evaluation
  • have collegial collaboration with advisors

Joe Mazzolla, associate professor and program director of the industrial/organizational Master of Arts in psychology program, sees multiple benefits from the GA program.

"The graduate assistantship program has allowed us to expose the students to additional research opportunities, as well as aspects used often by I/O psychologists such as elements of recruiting and program evaluation,” said Mazzolla. “We hope to eventually expand the experience to consulting-type work in the future as we are able to focus and shape the program in our department."

Kathrin Hennigan, ’22, graduate assistant with the I/O psychology program, has enjoyed the opportunity to gain relevant hands-on experience within her program of interest.

“I think that this experience will greatly impact my I/O psychology career by giving me more exposure to I/O research and program administration. Specifically, working in Dr. Mazzola's research lab will help me in my I/O psychology career through the unparallelled experience provided in statistical analyses, literature review, and academic writing. These applied skills will be very useful post-graduation.”

Hennigan notes that receiving the GA scholarship was just one factor in her decision to attend Meredith.

“Many other factors helped with the decision, including Meredith's supportive culture and deep community ties,” she said. “Serving as a graduate assistant just provided an additional reason for me to choose Meredith.”

Graduate Nutrition Program Manager Tracy Smith sees numerous benefits to the program for students.

"While the ultimate benefit for graduate students is having half of their tuition covered, there is a lot of additional value,” said Smith. “GAs develop applied knowledge and skill sets that they can use on their resumes and future career paths. They work closely with faculty, build connections, and establish networking opportunities while still in school. They then have the benefit of earning recommendations from esteemed colleagues in their chosen field."

Logan Joyner Pressley, ’22, is the current GA for the graduate nutrition program. She works ten hours a week for food and nutrition faculty, assisting with grading, research, proctoring exams, and more. With plans to eventually work in a private-practice setting as a registered dietitian nutritionist, Pressley said learning more about how to effectively explain nutrition information will help her when she is working with future clients.

“It’s been a great experience to work with the professors and learn more about effective teaching methods,” said Pressley. “I just recently completed my dietetic internship, and I realized the benefit of having practical, hands-on learning experiences. I feel that the graduate assistantship has enabled me to continue that more active learning style."

About the Program

Graduate assistantships at Meredith are available in the MBA, Education, Nutrition, and I/O Psychology programs. The assistantships typically involve a combination of research and teaching. Research assistants predominantly assist one or more faculty member(s) with academic research. Teaching assistants support classroom or other teaching-related experiences of the college. Each graduate program can provide additional details relevant to its graduate assistant position(s). Graduate assistants cannot be solely responsible for any courses taught at Meredith.

Graduate assistants receive a Graduate Assistantship Scholarship per credit hour tuition adjustment in the amount of ½ the per credit hour tuition rate for the specific program, for up to two academic years (fall, spring, and combined summer) while completing their graduate degree program. All student fees are excluded from the Graduate Assistantship Scholarship.

Learn more about the graduate assistantship program


Melyssa Allen
News Director
316 Johnson Hall
(919) 760-8087
Fax: (919) 760-8330
allenme@meredith.edu

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