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About Neuro15

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  1. I've heard of it happening before. Usually it's to pick up a particular technique, so that even if the PI can't take you it's a valuable rotation. I think the PI will certainly understand if you choose to rotate with a different PI though.
  2. Agreed. Besides the personal peace of mind and the ability to ensure all your materials are in in time, no. The adcom will not meet before the deadline, and the review process does not account for when an app was submitted (provided it was submitted before the deadline).
  3. Welcome to the forums! Unsurprisingly, the PI's advice was exactly what I was going to suggest. I can't stress communication enough. The PI, as well as everyone else in the lab, will understand that your daughter is a HS student and thus will need a bit of hand holding in the lab. Ask questions early and often if there is something that isn't clear. Most likely there will be a simple answer, and the 30 seconds used for asking the question is much better than potentially wasting reagents. I would suggest to your daughter that she keeps detailed notes of exactly what she does in the lab regarding experiments. Keeping a thorough lab notebook is a great habit to get into, and will help troubleshoot when things don't go as planned.
  4. I think you should be ok, your numeric stats aren't the greatest but your research experience and LOR should compensate. A strong and targeted SOP/PS will also help you and will help alleviate any worries about the lower stats. As bioenchilada said, neurobio programs tend to be pretty competitive so I would try to keep the prestige diversity you currently have. If you trim schools off the list keep that in mind.
  5. Couple thoughts: 1.) While publishing is always helpful to an application, the lack thereof hardly breaks one. 2.) Try to bump that Q GRE score up. A score in the 75th percentile up would help a lot. Your GPA isn't bad, so academically if you raise the GRE you should be ok on that front. 3.) Increase the number of programs you apply to, both in numbers and in diversity of prestige. Applying to four programs is on the lower side. If they were of all high prestige, that's why you were not successful.
  6. Ah okay. Did not realize you have a MS already, I can understand not wanting to wait then. It's hard to give you advice about what to do without knowing your app. Give us a breakdown of your app so that we can help you better.
  7. I'm a tech now as well and starting school in August. I did a two year commitment and honestly I'm happy I did. The second year is when I really started to understand the field of our research and guide my own project. That second year prepared me for a PhD more than anything I did in undergrad. Grad school isn't going anywhere, you might want to think about signing on for the full two years.
  8. Good advice in here. Emailing potential PIs of interest is a good way to start. This way you express interest and also see if the PI's lab is taking students. Some programs have a poster session at the beginning of orientation for new students. I know my program does this, and it's a great way to meet the PIs and see what is going on in each lab. If something like that doesn't happen, then email is probably your best option. Just include a brief blurp on why you're interested in the lab and include a couple of brief questions. Also attach a copy of your CV or resume for their perusal. Best of luck!
  9. Penn CAMB is UPenn.
  10. This is all IMO, of course. 1.) I think fit is more important than prestige in most situations. I think your list is well-developed and if those programs tick all your boxes then I wouldn't worry too much about it. 2.) I think people are divided on this issue on whether to tell the truth or play your future a bit closer to your chest. Personally I wouldn't say for sure one way or the other on my app, because things do change, and that way you'll avoid offending any professors who may look down on you for not pursuing academia. 3.) Can the PI co-sign the LoR? 4.) I wouldn't. Subject tests are generally pretty worthless to most programs. The only times I have seen them help applicants are A.) to overcome a low uGPA (not you), or B.) if their undergrad degree is in a different field as their intended graduate degree (not you).
  11. Yeah I'm sorry but it's a rejection at this point. I think if you haven't gotten one at this point then the software the program uses probably waits until the last day (April 15th, I think?) until they send them out.
  12. Going to backpack in Europe for a couple weeks. Schools going to be stressful, might as well relax a bit before it starts
  13. This is a much more reasoned post than your initial one, but it does reflect a deep misunderstanding on your part. A PhD is much more than just learning techniques and gathering data. It's an entire way of thinking, critical analysis and skepticism, and personal dedication that can be applied to pretty much every aspect of your professional career. Being formally trained as a scientist is much more than knowing how to pipette well, and is often necessary for upwards movement in places like industry. I never said getting a PhD is a good idea from a salary standpoint; that's not what I meant by soft money. What I meant is that often times academia positions only cover a portion of one's salary. At top institutions it's not uncommon to have zero salary support. That means you pay your entire salary through your grants. If your grants go, your salary is effectively zero. That is a constant threat that many people do not want to deal with. Most people go into a doctoral program for the same reasons you said, they love science and love asking and answering questions that are currently unknown. But people have different end goals, and that's something you should learn to respect or you will end up as that guy who no one likes in the program.
  14. Well thanks for the honesty I suppose. I'm going to be blunt with you, so try to not take offense, but you seem awfully arrogant. Some of your points are valid and I agree with; there are currently too many PhDs being trained. At this rate it's not sustainable, it's simply not. But to say a PhD is not worthwhile unless you stay in academia is silly and myopic, and should someone choose industry over academia that does not make them any less of a scientist. Many PhDs are choosing industry and alternative careers simply because they find academia is not an attractive option. Being on an entirely soft money salary fighting tooth and nail for grants in order to feed your family isn't exactly everyone's idea of a stable career, and if you can't see that then perhaps you should reflect on the current climate of academia a bit more. You know what percentage of PhD graduates end up in tenure track positions? It's low. While academia was once the default path, it's quickly becoming just the opposite and schools are changing to reflect that. You are exactly the the type of person I am looking to avoid for rotations. I hope during the course of your training you take off your blinders, because your narrow mindedness is something that is not a great character trait.
  15. I think you have the science issues well thought out on both sides of the issue, but also think about where you want to live (not just CoL). ~5 years is a long time to spend in one place and as you said these places are polar opposites. NJ vs CA, small town vs huge city (think things to do), etc. The Bay Area has a ton of industry-specific opportunities, but the NJ area is no slouch either. Many pharma and biotech companies call North NJ/Philadelphia area home. Both are amazing institutions, and whichever you choose certainly won't hold you back in the long term.