Foreword Reviews

The Journey through Graduate School

Flourish and Be Happy

Clarion Rating: 4 out of 5

The Journey through Graduate School is a useful guide that should help anyone understand the challenges associated with attending a graduate program.

Linda Marcuccilli’s The Journey through Graduate School is a brief, helpful overview of what it takes to juggle personal priorities while in a graduate program.

Unlike undergraduate study, which is typically pursued prior to starting a career, attending graduate school often means inserting classes and homework into an already busy schedule that may include a full-time job and family obligations. Linda Marcuccilli lived through this reality and decided to share her experience with others:

The key to flourishing during graduate school is to recognize how to create a balanced journey filled with life’s passions—doing things you love to do, and spending time with loved ones.

The reigning concept within this short work is, indeed, balance. The book begins with an introduction to and brief description of the “very critical components” needed to achieve success in graduate school: support, planning, reflective journaling, determination, and passion.

The core of the book is built around “The Graduate and Life Journey Tool,” a self-directed six-step exercise created by the author. This interesting, immersive tool facilitates inquiries into one’s career, finances, loved ones, household responsibilities, self-care, and more. Graduate students are guided through provocative thought exercises around questions such as “What Can’t You Live Without?” and “What Changes Can You Make?” The ultimate goal is to develop a personal plan for integrating graduate school with other responsibilities.

Beyond this tool, the book is an unusual potpourri. It includes inspirational, autobiographical short stories and poems, as well as easy recipes because “Having the time to prepare meals can be challenging.” Some of these additions are quite poignant, including a story about the author’s father undergoing treatment for cancer just as she was starting graduate school, and encouraging her to “go home and study.” Marcuccilli honored his wishes, completing her master’s in nursing about one year after her father passed away, and then pursuing research in palliative and end-of-life care.

This is a uniquely intimate portrait of a graduate student’s life, demonstrating in stories and poems how a person might overcome obstacles on the way to attaining an advanced degree. Marcuccilli maintains a remarkably positive attitude throughout the book; this alone should be encouraging and inspirational to those embarking on a graduate school journey.

The Journey through Graduate School is a useful guide that should help anyone understand the challenges associated with attending graduate school.

Reviewed by Barry Silverstein

Disclosure: This article is not an endorsement, but a review. The publisher of this book provided free copies of the book and paid a small fee to have their book reviewed by a professional reviewer. Foreword Reviews and Clarion Reviews make no guarantee that the publisher will receive a positive review. Foreword Magazine, Inc. is disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

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