Typical Schedule

The Typical Schedule

  1. 1 Year Before You Want to Start Grad School: "All the Ducks in a Row"

    1. Be in contact with the College of Forestry MI coordinator to discuss your interests: what program track (emphasis) you'd like to pursue.
    2. The key to the application process is being accepted by the department that houses the particular degree program-- that would happen once the Graduate School accepts your application, and your application is sent to the department that is home to your preferred program.  Like any graduate degree, it begins with conversations with the professor most likely to serve as your major professor and academic advisor for your particular effort.  Find the teaching faculty who share your interests and e-mail/phone/visit them!  Get on their radar and if a stong connection is made, getting into our grad program is much easier. A teaching faculty member needs to agree to serve as your major professor by signing your application. This is undoubtedly the slowest and most difficult part of the application process. Your application, including letter of intent, GRE scores, and transcripts are important here.
    3. Take the GRE... a prerequisite for OSU Grad School applications.
    4. Next, apply to the OSU Grad School. The university requirements can be reviewed here: http://oregonstate.edu/admissions/graduate/requirements.html.

      As the aforementioned website notes, "Applicants who meet these requirements and apply for admission [with plenty of time prior to the time they intend to begin] may be considered on an individual basis if supported for admission by their intended academic department."

  2. Year 1- Month 1: As you begin grad school...

    1. An MI student will typically begin enrolled in the fall quarter (begins late September), the first of three quarters of coursework.
    2. At this time an MI student works with the Peace Corps Regional Recruiter to apply to the Peace Corps as an MI volunteer. The OSU MI coordinator will provide you with a letter of acceptance to be used as proof of your graduate program. Your Peace Corps application is timed so that your assignment will begin soon after the first academic year.
      1. This includes medical check: http://studenthealth.oregonstate.edu/travel-medicine
      2. This includes finger-printing: http://oregonstate.edu/dept/security/sites/default/files/fingerprinting.pdf
  3. Year 1- Month 3

    1. Classes are going well; you and your major professor, along with the returned Peace Corps community at OSU and the MI coordinator, are helping you pursue coursework that enhances your training. You likely have found out from Peace Corps where in the world, regionally, you'll likely be placed as a volunteer.
  4. Year 1- Month 6

    1. Classes are going well; you're feeling prepared and excited for your Peace Corps service and to pursue your graduate degree project or thesis work overseas. You likely know the country in which you'll be serving.
  5. Year 1- Month 9

    1. At this point you have three full quarters of coursework under your belt, and you've met and spoken with many returned Peace Corps volunteers about everything from the application process to the trials and tribulations of service. You are both a budding forestry professional, as well as a budding Peace Corps volunteer.
  6. Year 1- Month 10, 11, or 12

    1. Leaving on a jet-plane for "Staging" (getting ready with Peace Corps staff and then "Training" (usually in your host country or a neighboring country).
  7. Year 2 - Month 3

    1. You have finished your Peace Corps training period, and now you are placed into your host community. We'll stay in touch via cell phones, e-mail, Skype, etc., as often as you find it possible.
    2. For the first few months you'll be focusing on your communities (coworkers, host community members, etc.), establishing work goals, developing mutual trust and respect, and understanding your environment.
    3. After several months you'll be in good position to begin your degree-related work-- your research/project topic will be developed over time, likely over the second year of your service, and with increasing detail over time.
  8. Year 4 - Month 1

    1. You have 9 months of academia, 3 months of Peace Corps training, and 24 months of Peace Corps Service under your belt.
    2. You are now "closing service", leaving your host country and returning to OSU for one quarter or more (if necessary or desired)-- this is when you wrap up your academic program requirements.
    3. This is also a great time for you to help our community via the Peace Corp's third goal: "helping promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans."

In sum, the OSU PCMI program has:

  • Give yourself 9-12 months to look at the program, visit with prospective major professors, take the GRE, assemble a solid OSU Grad School Application, and move to Corvallis
  • 9 months of your academic programming and Peace Corps application process while a resident student at OSU.
  • 3 months of Peace corps Training
  • 24 months of Peace corps Service
  • 3-9 months of post-Peace Corps academic program wrap-up.  And when you're done you HAVE IT ALL!