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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the application deadline? The deadline is 15 March each year. Each university transcript is reviewed by the Registrar’s Office, thus applications that are complete ahead of the deadline will receive review more quickly and allow us to process all applications in a timely manner.

What must be submitted with the application?
All applicants must submit a completed application form (either downloaded from the website or obtained from the Graduate Studies office); a personal statement; a resume; three letters of recommendation (one academic and two employment); OFFICIAL transcripts from all previously attended institutions of higher education; TOEFL scores for international students; and a non-refundable $50.00 application fee to:

Graduate Studies Office
Room E-315
27th Street at Seventh Avenue
New York, NY 10001-5992

Official transcripts are provided by an institution (either directly to FIT or to the applicant) in a sealed envelope, with the University’s seal or signature across the seal of the envelope. If you have been out of school longer than seven years, you can submit a third employer letter in lieu of an academic reference.

Is the GRE required of all applicants?
No. As a Master’s of Professional Studies program, we have the opportunity to assess your performance through letters of recommendation from your employer, evaluating your performance and leadership potential.
We do not use standardized test scores, but accordingly, academic performance in previous University-level work becomes a strong indicator of potential success as a graduate student.

What requirements apply to international students?
The TOEFL or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) test is required to demonstrate proficiency in English.  Only official test scores sent directly from the testing service to FIT are acceptable.
Overseas transcripts must be provided for review by the FIT Registrar, and if not printed in English, must be submitted to an FIT-approved Review Service for translation. 

Instructions for submitting your international credentials can be found on the FIT website at http://www.fitnyc.edu/14480.asp.  As a part-time graduate program, however, we are not able to provide support for international study visas.

How do I verify that my application is complete?
Approximately two weeks after your online application has been successfully submitted, you will receive an email with your FIT user ID and password. This will allow you to check the status of your application and to see if additional materials have been received on the FIT Online Information System.

How many students are accepted each year?
We admit an entering class of up to 22 students each year.

What specific undergraduate degrees are acceptable for admission?
There is no preference, though students with some business training and strong performance academically will have a stronger chance of admission. All students must demonstrate strong writing and research skills.

What should my personal statement include?
The personal statement is an important opportunity for you to present yourself and describe your academic and professional background, any global experience (language study, overseas academic study, overseas internships/work experience), reasons for program choice, and future career goals. It will also be evaluated as a sample of your writing skills.

Can I be admitted if I don’t have all my pre-requisites completed at the time of application?
Possibly, you must, however, have an otherwise strong application and a plan in place for the timely completion of pre-requisites before matriculation and the start of classes. It is up to the discretion of the Chair, and will be discussed during the admissions interview, if you are selected to interview for the program.

What types of jobs do students in the Cosmetics and Fragrance graduate program hold?
Our students and alumni are as diverse as the global beauty industry. We have many applicants each year with traditional marketing and brand management backgrounds, but we also value a cohort that represents all functional fields of the industry. 

Our students regularly come from positions in Finance, Product Development, Operations, Supply Chain, Creative/Advertising, Research & Development, Education/Training and Sales, from manufacturing companies and leading supply companies. We have also had students in retail careers, journalism and legal, but all have experience and a passion for the cosmetics and fragrance fields, and have been identified by their employers as top performers, change agents and as having senior leadership potential.

Can I customize my degree in any way or will you accept transfer credits from other graduate work?
The program does not have any electives at present, but we will accept up to six transfer credits of graduate work done elsewhere, at the discretion of the Chairperson. The minimum number of graduate credits that must be completed at FIT (SUNY residency requirement for graduate degrees) is 30 credits.

Other than FAFSA loans are there any scholarships, or TA positions?
For more information on loan programs, you may contact the Financial Aid Office: 212 217-7439. We do not provide scholarships.

What is the Capstone requirement?
The Capstone is a multi-disciplinary exercise at the end of the degree coursework which requires integrating all of the areas of one’s learning into a complex, executive level issue relating to the industry or to the global business environment. Students work in small teams over the course of many months, including globalizing their research on the field study to Asia in their final term. 

Capstone teams have access to recognized experts in various fields, innovation experts and faculty, and present their findings to a group of industry executives each year that totals over 700. The event, and the research have been sponsored over the years by leading consumer goods and retail firms such as Procter & Gamble, L’Oreal, Estee Lauder, LVMH, Johnson & Johnson, and Target. Research summaries and videos of past projects are available to view on our website.

What is the Individual Development Plan (IDP) requirement, and as part of this requirement, how is the Executive Mentor selected for each student?
The Individual Development Plan is modeled on the curricular platform of an artist’s portfolio, and allows the student an opportunity for final written analysis of the professional development growth, personal development, and leadership skill development of the individual student. 
 
Through thoughtful self-directed learning, guidance from an Executive Mentor, and training achieved through the graduate coursework, the student will complete a thorough skills analysis, and an Individual Development Plan for training and learning beyond the graduate program, which will serve as the roadmap for transition to more senior levels of corporate management. As part of the IDP, students complete 360 degree leadership assessments. The Executive Mentor, selected in collaboration with the program Chairperson and corporate sponsor, meets with the student over the two year program to provide guidance.

What determines acceptance?
After the application deadline, completed applications are reviewed. Selection is based on all the components of the application – transcripts, letters, resume, and work experience. Students chosen after the file screening will be offered a personal interview. Students are notified of decisions on or about May 1st. Those with completed applications by the deadline are reviewed first, and additional applications are accepted on a rolling admissions basis, until all spots in the entering cohort are assigned.

What is the ratio of applicants to accepted students? Do you create a Waiting List?
The ratio of applications is about 3 to 1, and when appropriate we will create a waiting list.

What is meant by “industry-related experience” and why do you require a minimum of three years of professional experience?
Industry-related applies to professions in major beauty manufacturers or suppliers, fragrance development houses, or careers in related fields such as publishing, retail, advertising or agency work in marketing communications and public relations. Ideal candidates will be in a managerial role in any of these areas, with a minimum of three years of full-time work experience. 

Preference is given to candidates with greater than three years of experience, even if a portion of that experience is from outside the industry in managerial functions, but a minimum of three years of direct industry experience is preferred. The average experience level of accepted candidates is between seven and nine years of work experience. Applicants are assumed to be more knowledgeable in their field and more comfortable with business principles with greater years of experience. This level of expertise is more likely to be attained only after several years of professional and industry experience.

What is the M.P.S. degree?
The Masters of Professional Studies is a recognized terminal degree focused on industry-related skills and content, and whose outcome is applied-research rather than traditional academic research. The M.P.S. equivalent among professional degrees includes the M.P.A. (Master of Public Administration), the M.S.W. (Master of Social Work), and the M.F.A. (Master of Fine Arts), among many others.

When are classes held?
Classes are scheduled on Tuesday and Thursday evenings (5:30-8:30 pm) to allow professionals to complete the degree while remaining active in their jobs and in the industry. The exception to this schedule are the two overseas seminars, which take place in the first term in Europe and in the final term in Asia.

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