Note: this story was adapted from a story that was originally posted in March 2017. 

Happy New Year!

If you’re like me, you’ve spent time these last couple of weeks recharging and reflecting on the past year. You’re likely also looking forward, making resolutions, and formulating plans for the future.

I hope Cal Poly’s MPS in Dairy Products Technology program is in your future. I’m available to help you evaluate your options so you can move forward with confidence. Feel free to call or email me. Together we can determine whether the program can help you reach your goals.

In the meantime, below are some pointers on how to cut through the clutter and make the decision that’s right for you.

Don’t know enough about the program or the industry to make a good decision? Read on.

First, consider that people with graduate degrees typically enjoy:

  • Higher pay ($16,000 per year more on average, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, and $400,000 over a lifetime, according to the U.S. Census Bureau)
  • Lower lifetime unemployment
  • Differentiation in a competitive job market
  • Higher job satisfaction
  • Continued intellectual development
  • Specialized knowledge
  • More control over their careers

Once you’ve made the decision to attend graduate school, there’s still work to do to determine which program is your best fit. Many factors should be considered, including program cost, reputation, compatibility with your areas of interest, career goals, location, and career opportunities and salaries for graduates. But how do you gather this information?


  1. If possible, visit our campus. Try to get a feel for the culture and the atmosphere. Sit in on some classes. Meet the professors and students in the program. Do you feel comfortable milling about with students already enrolled? Do students seem to like the program?
  2. Talk with former students. Ask for a list of people who have graduated from the program and reach out to them. Ask whether the program met their expectations. Are their careers on track? Is the MPS degree helpful in their career development? Does the degree command respect in the industry?
  3. Talk with senior-level people in the industry you would join. The program can help connect you with people who can provide a real-world prospective about what it’s like to work in the industry, what your career track will look like, and whether the degree you’re considering will help you get where you want to go.
  4. Do your research. Familiarize yourself not only with the MPS program, but with the field the MPS program trains you for. Conduct internet searches. Read the news. Ask lots of questions.
  5. Talk with current professors, colleagues, or guidance counselors. What do they think of the program you’re considering? Do they think it’s a good fit?
  6. Talk with friends and family. What do they think about your choices? Can they see you going down the road you’re considering?

If you’re unsure whether Cal Poly’s MPS in Dairy Products Technology program is right for you, start by giving me a call. I can help you work through your decision and connect you with students, graduates, and professionals in the industry. Together, we’ll get you the information you need to make an informed decision.

Call, text, or email me anytime. I look forward to hearing from you, and I hope to see your application soon. Have a great 2018!

Tom Photo 2015Tom Johnson. Program Manager
MPS in Dairy Products Technology
(970) 215-3459 cell