Annie Sourbis is in her last semester as a Public Affairs major at Baruch College. At Baruch, she is heavily involved in student life, including serving as the President of the Student Body last year. Her experiences on campus solidified that her passions are deeply rooted in education administration. She plans on pursuing a master’s in education with hopes to one day help ensure that every student has access to a quality K-12 education.
I've always stood by the fact that your grade point average is not the only thing that potential employers and graduate schools will judge you on in life after college. Being a more well-rounded person, by means of stepping outside your comfort zone, seeking professional development, and growing as a leader is equally as important. It is necessary to show what you have done both inside and outside of the classroom. I would even go so far as to say that an employer would rather hire a recent graduate with a GPA below 4.0 who was heavily involved on campus than hire one with perfect grades but little else to show on a resume.
Getting involved on campus was not a problem I encountered during college, but I did lose sight of my GPA along the way. Since I am now in the process of applying to graduate school, I can honestly say that I did focus a little bit more on my grades. I want to make it clear that no GPA is going to make it impossible for you to get a job, internship, scholarship, or get you into grad school, but a high GPA will keep more doors open for you when you leave college.
Here are some rules of thumb to keep in mind when it comes to your college GPA:
2.0 is the minimum GPA in order to be eligible for the Free Application for Student Aid (FAFSA) and the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP).
Be sure to know what the minimum GPA requirements are for your specific college, major, and/or scholarships in order to remain eligible.
Less than 3.0 – There is a general rule of thumb that if your GPA is less than a 3.0 you should omit it from your resume.
Greater than 3.2 – One of our financial aid counselors at Baruch College says that there are many more scholarship options for students who have GPAs above a 3.2 than for those who don’t. If you know you are going to need a scholarship, try to keep this in mind.
Greater than 3.5 – If you have a GPA of 3.5 or above, far more opportunities will be available to you. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that you won’t have any opportunities with a GPA lower than 3.5.
College is a time to have fun and enjoy new experiences, but remember: To be in successful in have to focus on some things that may be less fun (like studying). Good luck on your endeavors in college!