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FSU vs Rutgers for MA


katiekay

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I'm currently trying to decide between studying at Florida State University or Rutgers University for my Master's degree in Criminal Justice. Overall, I want to work in policy formulation which may require further school (I'm planning to make that decision throughout the time in my Master's career). Essentially, I can't decide between the two schools. Neither have sent offers of financial aid yet because they just received my FAFSA. Rutgers is the top school in my field and I'm hoping to acquire some aid at both schools.

 

I'm a little clueless on this whole graduate school process. I was thrown into graduating a year early so I'm only twenty and trying to make gigantic decisions. I'm leaning towards Rutgers but know nothing about either cities (Tallahassee or Newark). I currently am a server through my undergrad and may try to serve again in my new city, wherever I end up.

 

Anyone have any advice or information on either schools or cities?

 

Thank you!

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Hopefully you can find comfort knowing that US News ranks both programs  top 10 for criminology in grad school

In general students obtaining terminal master's degrees are less likely at certain schools to receive GA or stipends, due to the fact that PhD students take precedence.

If i was you take a look at how much money you are comfortable with paying/ accruing debt. Especially since you said you are considering getting another degree.

You might have a slightly easier change finding an internship in Tallahassee because it is a small town, that has more of a small town feel, but it is the state capital. Look at the alumni network strength in the schools.

 

Good Luck!

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The cost of living is probably lower in Tallahassee. Finding an internship may not be easier just because there are fewer opportunities (smaller town) and there are lots of students competing for those. If you're in New Brunswick, you'd be able to consider internships in the NYC metro area. That said, it sounds like you're looking at taking out loans for either program, which isn't really a great idea.

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The cost of living is definitely cheaper and FSU offers way more grad funding than other schools in FL. The alumni base is also pretty strong, especially if you're looking at staying in Florida (seriously, you can never escape the Seminoles here). None of my friends have had any trouble finding internships - undergrad or grad - in Tallahassee; it's a small place, but like Texas832 said, it is still the state capitol. It's a business hub to some degree.

 

If you're taking out loans to go to a state grad school though, it doesn't hurt to take some time off and make yourself more marketable for funding!

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After being accepted to both schools for Criminal Justice I would say choose Rutgers. They have a lot of opportunities to engage in policy relevant research and a lot of connections with think tank agencies like VERA and RAND. Quite a few professors have grants right now (I'm not sure what you area of interests are), and the Dean is Shadd Maruna for crying out loud! Lol Awesome. Todd Clear is also the Provost and has alottttt of projects going on now. While the cost of living is higher than FSU, I still think it's a great school!

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My alma mater is FSU so I'm slightly biased but you absolutely can't go wrong in choosing FSU. If you ever had any questions about life in Tallahassee or anything aside from the actual Criminology program, feel free to PM me! I'll be as candid as I can be  :P

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The cost of living is probably lower in Tallahassee. Finding an internship may not be easier just because there are fewer opportunities (smaller town) and there are lots of students competing for those. If you're in New Brunswick, you'd be able to consider internships in the NYC metro area. That said, it sounds like you're looking at taking out loans for either program, which isn't really a great idea.

 Loans appeaer to be the only option at this point considering all of the money I make during the year goes to living expenses. From what I've seen of offers, it's looking like in order to get to any school, loans are really what's left. For background information, I'm graduating a year early so I was thrown into this as well. I'm currently completing an internship with Juvenile Probation in my state to get some experience as well. I'm not sure if it's too late to apply for scholarships or grants, or I'm just not sure how. I'll be the only one in my family getting a BA or MA, so I don't really know where to go as far as expense wise.

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It is probably too late to apply for most scholarships or grants. You could try to get an assistantship on campus, either through your department or through about unit like Student Affairs or Residence Life. That said, taking out a lot of loan for a master's degree may not be the best idea at this point in time. If I were you, I would defer and apply again next year. In the next round of applications, focus on programs that offer funding (tuition scholarships, assistantships) to master's students so that you don't have to go into debt to get your graduate degree. Good luck!

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