tom5156

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  1. tom5156 added a topic in Applications   

    Please help! Updating my CV and have urgent question
    Hi everyone,

    I'm looking for some last minute advice on how I should approach updating my CV to send out to potential faculty advisers. Here's my situation, and I would love to hear any of your feedback/help if you have any!

    I'm going to Africa for the next six months (hence why I need to contact professors ASAP) to do research that is directly relevant to the field that I am applying for PhD programs in this fall for the entry in fall 2013. I just went through my first round of applications and was rejected from both PhD programs, and accepted to both Master's.

    When I get back from Africa, I'll be attending a Master's program starting Spring 2013. I am planning to only attend the program for a semester and begin a PhD in the fall, and committed to the Master's program because a) I don't want to waste time doing nothing I could try to knock out grad pre-reqs (stats) while I'm there c) it's a back-up. The thing is, I just received a full tuition scholarship and was awarded a teaching assistantship with a stipend for my master's program.

    My question is-- I will obviously include my research in Africa, but should I reference that I will be at this master's program starting Spring 2013? I want to highlight my achievement of receiving a competitive scholarship/assistantship to the program, but I don't want them to think that I can't commit to something or that I'm already trying to get out of a program that I haven't even started.

    I sincerely appreciate any help you guys can provide or any of your opinions. I need to contact professors in the next day or two so I hope to hear back!
    • 0 replies
    • 413 views
  2. tom5156 added a post in a topic Grad school and the socially ridiculous   

    Honestly, talk to your doctor about getting prescribed a low dose of Xanax. It works wonders to calm your social anxiety and you will end up being more relaxed and like your true self rather than appearing meek or nervous.
  3. tom5156 added a topic in Waiting it Out   

    When programs send out e-mail acceptances, are they all at once?
    I'm just freaking out right now because I saw on two different forums that my top prospect has sent out an e-mail acceptance to one person (the same person on both forums) yesterday. I'm curious if anyone knows whether or not e-mail acceptances are sometimes staggered, or if they typically send them all out on the same day. I believe the person received the e-mail from the department, not their POI, and also the program is relatively small and probably accepts at most 8-10 PhD students.
    • 2 replies
    • 719 views
  4. tom5156 added a post in a topic What does this mean?? Interviews and POI Correspondance   

    I think this is definitely a good sign. For now, I would only respond to him if he keeps sending you articles, and if you haven't heard anything in a few weeks you could drop back in and shoot him an e-mail. But from what it sounds like, he is interested in you, so congrats!
  5. tom5156 added a topic in Waiting it Out   

    Did I essentially get rejected?
    Hey- so I applied to four programs and haven't heard officially from any of them yet. This past fall I spoke on the phone with my POI at my reach school, and she admitted to me that my application is a "long shot" because the program rarely admits PhD applicants with a GPA below 3.6/7 (I have a 3.26).

    I saw on the results search that one person got an interview with the program I applied to at my reach school, so I e-mailed my POI earlier this week to basically remind her who I am and how much I want to work with her. She replied pretty quickly, and said that "it's not looking good" because there were 3 applicants to work with her specifically who had more competitive applications. She explained that she can't offer admission to all of the applicants, because if she did and they all accepted, she would be overwhelmed. She then said that if 2 of the people above me went elsewhere, she would be "delighted" to accept me.

    Is she just being polite, and I am basically rejected? Or does is it sound like kind of like a wait-list situation?

    I appreciate any insight/opinions about this situation!
    • 2 replies
    • 1,299 views
  6. tom5156 added a post in a topic Binghamton, NY   

    Hey guys... I grew up in Binghamton... and my sister is graduating from SUNY this year, so hopefully I can help.

    First off, SUNY Binghamton is in Vestal, NY (the town I grew up in). It's a neighboring suburb of Binghamton (the campus is about 5-10 minutes away from Downtown). The Binghamton area is pretty small, but it's quaint and since I have gone away for school (to Buffalo), I 've come to appreciate the natural beauty of the area. There are many gorgeous rolling hills and hiking and outdoor activities.

    Most undergrads live in Vestal (there's a big off campus apartment complex in between campus and Downtown), or Downtown. I don't know where graduate students live primarily, although my guess is in Binghamton (the West side is very nice). BU's (you'll learn to call it that if you don't already) campus is (in my opinion) really nice. It's kind of hilly, and has a cool layout. Make sure you go hiking in the Nature Preserve on campus... it's one of the most beautiful areas in Binghamton.

    It's a great school, in a medium-sized college town. You should be able to get apartments for cheap. Best of luck!!
  7. tom5156 added a post in a topic For Ecology & Evolution people, past and present!   

    Thanks guys for the responses and information!

    To be honest, I feel like I am a strong candidate for a PhD program. I'm bright and I really am passionate about research and science. I'm doing research in a marine ecology lab (and have been all this year), and I recently was offered a position as a research assistant studying primate behavior at the local zoo for the summer (through a Professor at my university). My advisor in the marine ecology lab is the Director of the Graduate program in EEB at my school, so I am hoping a good letter from him will hold some weight (I also am close with another established and well-known Professor who I am hoping will write me a letter). I'm the vice-president of the Undergraduate Biology Association (my school's bio club), and I am anticipating doing well on the GREs, I'm good at taking standardized tests and I've been preparing for it for some time. (By the way, I'm not trying to boast at all I just want to give you guys an idea of my academic profile)


    However, I really am worried about my GPA. I understand that GPA really is so subjective and that grad programs realize that... but it's still important. I did well my freshman year, but this year I had to take orgo and physics, both of which I hate haha. I got a 2.9 last semester, and am anticipating around a 2.5 this semester, but with those grades I'll still have a cumulative of a 3.0-3.1 going into my junior year. Next year I'm taking great classes that are interesting to me and I'm looking forward to doing well and improving my GPA.

    So I guess my biggest concern about applying for PhD programs entering the Fall after I graduate it that 1/3 of my academic record (GPAwise) at the time I'm applying is pretty poor. I've done a lot of research on advisors and programs, and am well informed about all the processes and procedures... I just wish I had more acceptance statistics to compare my profile with (like predent.com/studentdoctor).

    Do any of you guys have any insight as to what a competitive/average acceptance GPA range would look like? I hope to graduate with around a 3.3-3.4.... but I also feel like I'm at a disadvantage because I am ideally going to enter a PhD program without a Master's, so I would imagine that there is a higher standard? I really appreciate any advice or information you guys have.
  8. tom5156 added a post in a topic For Ecology & Evolution people, past and present!   

    Hey guys... I just joined this site and found this thread.

    Right now, I'm a sophomore at a large public university. I plan on graduating in May 2012 with a BA in Biology and a minor in Anthropology. I'm interested in Animal Behavior, specifically primates (hence the Anthro minor).

    I'm anxious about applying to grad schools... I would ideally (as of now) like to apply for admission into PhD programs for Fall 2012. Is it common to apply to PhD programs beginning the fall after undergraduate graduation? I am kind of worried because almost all of the programs have application deadlines in December, so I won't even have my final GPA by then, etc.

    Looking for any advice on this! Thanks.