Employer Sponsorship Tips

Many potential graduate students seek support from their current employers to fund their graduate degree. Though your employer may not advertise funding for graduate studies, many employers know that helping employees develop their skills benefits the organization in the short and long term. Tell your employer about your professional development goals, and discuss what options and support are available to you.

We have compiled tips for your discussion to secure employer support:

Tips to Secure Employer Support

Be Prepared

Contact your Human Resources Department or other employees who have requested support to find out if your company has sponsored employees previously. Learn what your company's requirements are or what steps you must take to receive sponsorship, if any.

Show Your Commitment

Take the time to fully understand the Master of Science in Data Science program and its benefits to you and your company, and articulate this to your employer. Explain other information, such as the program's full cost, credit structure and time commitments as well.

Make Your Case

List the reasons you think earning a master's in data science will make you more valuable to your organization. Include the short- and long-term benefits your employer will receive by supporting your education. Be ready to demonstrate your value and skill development through the program and how you can use this to address issues in your company or department.

Understand Your Employer's Expectations

Employer support can be incredibly beneficial, but may also mean you'll need to adhere to new expectations or polices. Some employers require employees who are receiving financial support for graduate school to commit to a minimum employment period with the organization or have GPA requirements. Your employer may ask about additional funding options available to you or about tax implications; be prepared to discuss this information.

Be Cooperative

Connect your employer with a DataScience@SMU admissions counselor if they have any questions about the program or the admissions process. Employers are also welcome to attend online information sessions about the program.

For more information about funding your graduate education, contact an admissions counselor at admissions@datascience.smu.edu or 1-844-768-4637.