How does undergrad differ from grad school?
McGlynn: Undergrad is much more diverse-its purpose is to give you a background of all areas, while graduate school is much more specific and specific is good. If you know what you want to do, grad school is great because every class concentrates on your degree. In other words, it is "useful knowledge" because you will be applying it later in your career.
What are a few things you wish you knew before you enrolled in grad school that you know now?
McGlynn: I realized that I did not learn how to really study until the end of my junior year in college and that I wasted a lot of time during my undergrad that I could have been using to improve my resume.
The major difference between undergraduate and graduate studies is the fact that graduate professors tend to view their students also as colleagues, therefore the expectations are considerably higher and personal autonomy is a must. Projects are much more involved at the graduate level, so the study habits and sensibilities you have developed over the course of your undergraduate education will play a significant role in your success.
What kinds of careers can someone with your field of study have?
McGlynn: Phys students go into various areas including study athletic performance, improve athletic performance, physical therapy, nursing, medical school, physician's assistant, clinical rehab (cardiac rehab), other jobs within the hospital, research (clinical or performance or both), become a professor (with PhD), and any physiological field.
What would you like to do with your degree after graduation?
McGlynn: My ultimate goal is to become a professor (PhD). However, after graduation I may end up going to nursing school after my clinical experience and thesis work.
What advice can you offer to students thinking about studying the same as you?
McGlynn: Don't waste your time-research the field and shadow others. Most importantly, talk to people. Networking is one of the most valuable assets-I have never gotten a job on my own-and I have always had some connection. Talk to your professors-they have been through it and know what it takes. Show them who you are and what you want and they will help you in any way they can!
Are you involved in any extracurricular activities and/or jobs that directly relate to your major and how have they helped you?
McGlynn: I was involved in a club sport, Ohio University Crew team. The advisor for the team was one of my laboratory professors, so I got to know him on a different level than the rest of my class. He would later write me a recommendation for grad school here at OU. Furthermore, the sport of crew is one of the major total body workouts that can produce extreme physiological measurements. So it was interesting to see the comparison of the amateur rower, like myself, and the elite crew teams.
What advice can you offer to students thinking about attending grad school?
McGlynn: It all starts with undergraduate, meet the right people, do the research to find the right program for your talents and interests, and ask for help from professors-that's why they are there!
What is coursework like? Are there more opportunities for hands-on experiences in grad school than in undergrad?
McGlynn: Graduate school is much more hands-on experience. Grad school is specific; every class one way or another will make an impact on you future career. Plus, with smaller classes and deep discussion you learn two times as much in a short time period.
How will attending grad school help you in your career and in the "real world?"
McGlynn: Graduate school is essential to the exercise physiologist, whether that means competing for a physical trainer job or improving your r?sum? to enter into further schooling.
By Natalie Pezzenti, staff writer