What is a Graduate Assistantship?

The majority of our full-time students currently hold graduate assistant positions, which provide students with real-world experience in a higher education setting. Students get the chance to work with professionals, on or off campus, in order to incorporate what they learn in the classroom into their work and put theory to practice. Assistantships (typically 20-25 hours per week) allow students to explore different career pathways within higher education and give them the experience to become competitive in the job market upon graduation. Graduate assistantships also help students support themselves financially throughout their time in school.

Current graduate assistant opportunities include positions in student affairs, academic affairs, administration, educational policy, local non-profits, and research with faculty members. 

Preview Day

Preview Day is held each spring to provide newly admitted students the chance to learn more about SMU and the Higher Education Program. The night before Preview Day, newly admitted students are invited to a pizza party, followed by class with current students in the Higher Education program. On Preview Day, students spend the morning interviewing for highly coveted graduate assistant positions. After interviews, potential students head to lunch with current students, followed by a tour of SMU and other events.

Preview Day is a great opportunity for potential students to mingle with other newly admitted students and current students, as well as higher education faculty and student affairs staff. This experience helps students understand the culture of our program and experience the environment they will be a part of for the coming years.

If you miss Preview Day, you can still apply for open graduate assistant positions at a later date by contacting us.