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And Decision Season has Begun!

viggosloof28

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blog-0734221001359861413.jpgAfter a (relatively) long absence, I'm back!

This past week has marked the beginning of decision season for me. The week before that was frustrating and a bit depressing, which is one of many reasons I did not do my weekly update last weekend.

Several UC Berkeley History decisions were posted on this site around Friday, January 25th, and - knowing the general pattern of admissions/rejections for the school, via Gradcafe's results search page - I began to despair of my chances there. By last Monday, I was in a pretty foul mood (my friends and parents are saints for putting up with my constant anxiety!), and convinced that because Berkeley apparently did not want me, none of the other schools would either. Consider me a cautionary tale of the dangers of Gradcafe addiction!

I was on the verge of cutting myself off from this site entirely - going cold turkey, as it were - by the middle of the week, when yet more days had gone by without a word from any school. I had begun second-guessing everything about my applications and email/phone interactions with professors. Even with POIs I felt I had made a real connection with, and who had been undoubtedly enthusiastic about my application, I started imagining that maybe they had just been stringing me along...or that something had gone horribly wrong with my applications - like that maybe all my recommenders expressed their secretly-harbored beliefs that I'm an idiot imposter who doesn't belong in a graduate program. My imagination went completely (and horribly!) wild! :P

Thankfully, I was mistaken!

Right in the middle of my super long day on campus (Thursday), I happened to check my email as I was walking to class...and, lo and behold, my inbox presented me with a lovely email from my POI at UNC Chapel Hill, giving me the unofficial notice that I was accepted to the PhD program there with guaranteed funding for five years!

Without exaggerating, this was one of the happiest moments in my life. :D I called my mom and dad immediately, and have been celebrating ever since! I don't remember anything from my classes that evening - it was so hard not to sit there day-dreaming and grinning like a fool! Hopefully, none of my professors noticed... :P

One thing I DO remember from that evening of euphoria, however, is that I finally heard back from Berkeley that night. Thank goodness my UNC acceptance had come earlier that day because I did, indeed, get rejected from Berkeley. (I haven't heard anything from the other 8 programs I applied to.)

I can only imagine how depressed I would be feeling right now if Berkeley had rejected me without my having an admission from another school, and I'm really feeling for everyone still waiting. Try to hang in there - I'm sending you all my good luck vibes, and hoping that great news is around the corner for all of you! :D

With an option in hand, I'm happy to say I can finally sleep properly, check my email a reasonable number of times per day, and even focus better on my thesis. Now that I know I have someplace to go, I feel more motivated to finish strong at my current program. :) Though, of course, I'm also sorely tempted to distract myself by looking at apartments, etc. in Chapel Hill...so we'll see how things go. I think I deserve a weekend of celebrating after this insane application process, though! My thesis can surely wait til Monday...?

In any case, I wish all of you the very best of luck! We just need to hold out a couple more weeks (for History, anyway). I have a feeling this week will be especially eventful for us. I know it's frustrating and that things might be looking really dark right now (and that nothing I say here will probably ease your mind at all), but try to hang in there (easier said than done, I know!) and stay positive! :D



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I'm so happy you have some piece of mind! Congratulations on your acceptance! Unfortunately, I've only heard from Berkeley (thumbs down), but you've given me hope that more positive news is yet to come!! ***now get to work on that thesis (ditto for me!***

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Doesn't an acceptance make such a difference in the whole process? I got accepted at one of my top choices, so I'm pretty much emotionally coasting through the rest of this. Even if I get rejected from every other school, I got in to one of my #1s! Congratulations, and I hope this also provides peace for you as you wait to hear from other schools!

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the amount of smiley faces in this blog made me smile even more than the general nod of approval at the relevancy and accuracy of this post. i too got into one school and then rejected from another in 24 hours, and i couldn't agree more on the timing of things. CONGRATULATIONS, we are getting PhDs!!!

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Congrats on your acceptance!! It really does change everything when you're no longer up in the air not knowing what your next (five) year(s) will be like.

Now here's to hoping you soon get to have the awesome problem of having to choose between several great offers :)

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Congrats!

 

Is it normal for people to find out admissions decisions so early? One of my friends has already been accepted into NYU and University of Chicago, and I still haven't heard a single peep from anyone. 

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Thanks so much, everyone! :D You guys are the best!

 

@ fuzzylogician: you have a "prophetic soul!"  I got another fully-funded offer yesterday, this time from UT Austin.  And you're right...having to make a decision like this is a wonderful dilemma! :)

 

@ GabbyKay: no, I don't think it's "normal" exactly...certainly not for the program at UNC.  I got an early decision because the department decided to nominate me for a university-wide fellowship.  They automatically have to guarantee funding for 5 years when they nominate someone, so my POI emailed me to let me know the good news.  I haven't seen any other news for this program except for someone having an interview...so there's still plenty of hope for your programs! :)

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