human development and family studies

Transition Center, 2 Lower College Road, Kingston, RI 02881

– 401.874.2150 (ph); 401.874.4020 (f)

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Master of Science in HDF

College Student Personnel

Frequently Asked Questions


How do I apply? What do I need to submit?

To apply to the graduate program in College Student Personnel, candidates should submit an application online through the Graduate School web site. Along with the online application, you will be asked to upload the following program-specific materials:

  • At least two letters of recommendation: one academic, preferably a faculty member from your undergraduate major; and one student affairs professional
  • Unofficial transcripts of all previous college work.(If you are accepted into the CSP program, you will be asked to submit an official transcript before beginning in the fall.)
  • Current resume
  • Personal statement

Does the CSP program require the GREs or MATs?
No, submission of GRE or MAT scores is not a requirement for admission.

Is there a minimum required undergraduate cumulative GPA?
The University’s Graduate School expects that applicants maintained an average of B (3.00 on a 4.00 scale) in their undergraduate work. Applicants with undergraduate averages below the expected 3.0 may make an appeal in the Personal Statement. This appeal must provide a rationale for the undergraduate GPA and evidence for the likelihood of an applicant’s ability to be successful at the graduate level (e.g., satisfactory performance in post-baccalaureate work, high scores on the GRE or MAT)

What references/recommendations should I use?
It is required to have a letter from one faculty member and one student affairs professional to show your background in academics as well as student affairs or other related experience.

What is the deadline to apply?
The completed application package, including supporting materials, is due by January 15. To ensure your application is complete by 1/15, we recommend submitting your on-line application by no later than January 1, which gives your references two weeks to complete their recommendations. Materials received after January 15 and prior to April 1 are reviewed on a space-available basis.

Are applications for the CSP program reviewed as they are received by the URI Graduate Scool and the program?
No, completed applications for the CSP program are not reviewed until after January 15, the first admission deadline. Application packets completed between January 16 and April 1 are reviewed only if space becomes available.

Does the CSP program require or prefer any particular major?
While no specific undergraduate preparation is required, candidates should have a clear understanding of the field of College Student Personnel. They should also be willing to focus on personal and professional development as part of their preparation for this field.

Current undergraduates are encouraged to consider an interdisciplinary Leadership Studies minor, like URI’s  Minor in Leadership Studies.

How competitive is the application process?
The program is highly competitive. Approximately 10-15 applicants are accepted each year from the over 100 who apply.

Can I interview at any time?
There is an interview day in the spring that will be scheduled for applicants who have passed an initial screening of all materials in their completed admission files. There may be opportunities to interview for graduate assistantships on this day as well. Phone interviews for applicants not within a reasonable driving distance may be conducted.

Can I enroll in the program in the spring or summer?
The program accepts students for the fall semester only.

Can I be a part time student?
Yes, students can choose to be part-time or full-time. Part-time students typically are employed in full-time positions in higher education settings.

Is this program part of the New England Regional Program?

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Graduate Assistantships

Does everyone in the program have a graduate assistantship?
No, but all students have a direct link to practice in college student affairs or closely allied setting. Most full-time students have this link through a graduate assistantship. Graduate assistantships provide opportunities to integrate theory with practice and to receive financial assistance.

How do I apply for a graduate assistantship?
Applicants who are selected for an academic interview will be provided information about assistantship openings for the following fall. Applicants are responsible for applying for any assistantships that are of interest. After a review of applications, assistantship supervisors will directly contact selected applicants to arrange interviews for their particular position.

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Life at URI

What is life in Kingston, Rhode Island like?
The University of Rhode Island is located in the southern part of Rhode Island in the historic village of Kingston. The spacious, rural campus is located 30 miles south of Providence in the northeast metropolitan corridor between New York City and Boston. One of its most attractive assets is its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean and Narragansett Bay which provide the area with some of the most beautiful beaches in the nation.

There are approximately 13,000 undergraduate students and 3,000 graduate students enrolled at URI.

Is graduate housing available?
Housing is available both on and off campus. Applications and information may be obtained by contacting the Office of Housing and Residential Life at 401-874-5390 or the Commuter Housing Office at 401-874-2828.

Where do the students come from?
Students come from all over the globe, with the highest concentration from the Northeast region of the United States.

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Does every student have an advisor?
Yes, each new student has a faculty advisor and a second-year student transition coach. The coach serves as a student resource as well as a possible mentor. Continuing students all have a faculty advisor.

Is there a thesis requirement?
No, but there is a capstone requirement for the final year in the program. Students complete an assessment project at their internship, assistantship, or place of employment.

Is there field experience involved?
Yes, field experiences may be completed as a one-semester practicum and/or as a year-long  internship experience. Placements have been offered at other institutions in the area including Brown University, Bryant University, the Community College of Rhode Island, Connecticut College, Johnson & Wales University, Providence College, Rhode Island College, Rhode Island School of Design, and Salve Regina University.

Can I take classes as a non-matriculating student?

Please see the Graduate School Manual. Note that faculty does not advise non matriculating students.

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Jobs and Careers

Where are CSP students employed after graduation?
A sample of higher education institutions where our new graduates have been employed include:

  • American Institute for Foreign Study, CT
  • Babson College, MA
  • Boston College, MA
  • Boston University, MA
  • Brown University, RI
  • Bryant University, RI
  • Christopher Newport University, VA
  • Community College of Rhode Island, RI
  • Cornell University, NY
  • Curry College, MA
  • Davidson College, NC
  • Emmanuel College, MA
  • Fairfield University, CT
  • Johnson & Wales University, RI
  • Miami University, OH
  • Palm Beach State College, FL
  • Pepperdine University, CA
  • Rhode Island College, RI
  • Roger Williams University, RI
  • Salve Regina University, RI
  • Santa Monica College, CA
  • Shippensburg University, PA
  • Stonehill College, MA
  • Texas Christian University, TX
  • University of Arizona, AZ
  • University of District of Columbia, DC
  • Vassar College, NY
  • Worcester Polytechnic Institute, MA

What kind of positions do CSP students have following graduation?
Some of the positions our recent graduates have been hired for include the following titles:

  • Academic Advisor or Counselor
  • Admission Officer or Advisor
  • Assistant Director, Career Planning or Career Services
  • Assistant Director, Residential Life
  • Advisor, Education Abroad
  • Advisor, Student Support Services
  • Assistant Director, Student Activities
  • Assistant Director, Leadership Programs
  • Assistant Director of Orientation and Off-Campus Services
  • Coordinator of Leadership Programs
  • Financial Aid Counselor
  • First Year Adviser
  • Greek Affairs Advisor
  • Hall Director, Residence Life

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Contact Information

Quinn Hall, Room 220
Lower College Road
Kingston, RI 02881
Phone: 401-874-2260
Fax: 401-874-4035

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