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johndiligent

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  1. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from Jae B. in Accepting all offers and then backing out of all but one?   
    Bad, bad, bad, bad, bad idea.

    I know it seems like a good, good, good idea but it's a bad, bad, bad idea in disguise. There's a reason response deadlines exist and it's not because adcomms are evil and want you to make a split-second decision that you'll later regret. It's because they want to be able to extend offers to other people. If you wait even a month, the department could effectively lose the opportunity to offer the position and/or funding to another student. Or, by the time you make your decision, a student who badly wanted to attend but actually observed the rules of the game could be committed somewhere else. It's a jerky move.

    But the people who care about that kind of thing are usually people who aren't selfish bastards. If you care more about you and the me-me-me-ness of the process, then don't forget that there are serious consequences for you personally. Academia's a small world and word gets around. People working in your discipline are going to recognise your name and usually there are friendships across departments everywhere. Especially if you're fake-accepting more than one department, word is going to get around and people will find out. You may have to one day apply for a job with one of the departments you're screwing over. A reputation as a douchebag is not going to help you.

    Instead, ask for an extension. Most are amenable.
  2. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from Postbib Yeshuist in Accepting all offers and then backing out of all but one?   
    Bad, bad, bad, bad, bad idea.

    I know it seems like a good, good, good idea but it's a bad, bad, bad idea in disguise. There's a reason response deadlines exist and it's not because adcomms are evil and want you to make a split-second decision that you'll later regret. It's because they want to be able to extend offers to other people. If you wait even a month, the department could effectively lose the opportunity to offer the position and/or funding to another student. Or, by the time you make your decision, a student who badly wanted to attend but actually observed the rules of the game could be committed somewhere else. It's a jerky move.

    But the people who care about that kind of thing are usually people who aren't selfish bastards. If you care more about you and the me-me-me-ness of the process, then don't forget that there are serious consequences for you personally. Academia's a small world and word gets around. People working in your discipline are going to recognise your name and usually there are friendships across departments everywhere. Especially if you're fake-accepting more than one department, word is going to get around and people will find out. You may have to one day apply for a job with one of the departments you're screwing over. A reputation as a douchebag is not going to help you.

    Instead, ask for an extension. Most are amenable.
  3. Downvote
    johndiligent reacted to ROM in Accepting all offers and then backing out of all but one?   
    How "bad" is it to accept all your offers and not actually decide on which program you'll stick with till after you've REALLY had a chance to figure it out and visit campuses? This would mean first saying yes to all offers, then telling all but one school that you're really sorry and you made a huge mistake and actually, you won't be attending their program in the fall despite what you committed to earlier (and losing some money on tuition deposits, etc).

    Does this happen all the time? I don't know who I'm afraid of pissing off, but it can't be good to burn bridges before you've even made them in the world of academia. At the same time, I feel compelled to visit the campuses I am accepted to before I make a decision and I can't very well do that without missing class and spending a fortune on plane tickets before April 15 (and no one's offered to fly me out; these are all terminal MS programs).

    Were I to fake-accept all my offers, it'd definitely buy me some more time. I could visit in a month when it's most convenient for me. I don't know why I feel the need to prolong this horrible decision-making phase, but I just don't feel quite ready to kill off my other options yet.

    Of course there's the ethical line of thinking in which other really qualified people on wait-lists are dying to get in and I would just be prolonging the torture for them and messing up their plans. What if someone who's waitlisted at their 1st choice, which happens to be a school I accept and then later back out of, doesn't find out they're accepted till August, after they've already made lots of plans to go to another school? I'd be pissed if that were me.

    But then again, this is ALL ABOUT ME. In many ways this whole process is a selfish one. There's fierce competition. So is this type of move a seriously dirty trick? And should I care?
  4. Upvote
    johndiligent reacted to fadeindreams in Decision Crunch Time (Friday)   
    *sigh* Really? Why does everyone even bother to ask this question? Take the funding, silly.
  5. Downvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from Lit23 in Bouncing off an English Major   
    If you don't know what you want to study in graduate school, you shouldn't go to graduate school.

    Why do you want to go? What do you want to accomplish?
  6. Upvote
    johndiligent reacted to red_crayons in Bouncing off an English Major   
    I wholeheartedly agree with this.

    Also, pay attention to what catches your interest outside of school. What part of the paper or evening news are you most interested in? What are your hobbies? Are there any social issues which are important to you? You can look for opportunities related to those interests, and spin your English degree as, "I'm a good communicator and I know how to organize my thoughts." I know one person who pitched his interest in D&D to a local university in those terms, and now he works part time running games with local schools!

    Trying a couple jobs or volunteer opportunities out can really help you narrow your potential graduate school field, too. Looking back over the last 3 years, I realized that I've worked in 3 distinct fields and taken courses in 2 subjects. It took a little bit of time and perseverance, but it also got me tuned into a really cool idea that I'm excited to explore in grad school next year. It's scary to leave school and go on the job market, but it's really rewarding to find yourself feeling motivated and dedicated to a particular field of study once you have some experience under your belt.
  7. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from psycholinguist in Any idea what's going on?   
    I wouldn't assume rejection until you get it in writing. You'll just drive yourself crazy. That said, unfortunately, an excellent fit, good LOR and professional SOP doesn't always guarantee admission. Be cautiously optimistic.
  8. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from repatriate in Bouncing off an English Major   
    If you don't know what you want to study in graduate school, you shouldn't go to graduate school.

    Why do you want to go? What do you want to accomplish?
  9. Downvote
    johndiligent reacted to 000 in Making a school choice with your significant other in mind   
    You're not gonna like this, but if your boyfriend works from home, has been with you for seven years, and isn't saying with complete sincerity that you should go to the best program you get into even if it's in the middle of freakin' Siberia, you should really be re-evaluating your relationship. That's outrageous.
  10. Upvote
    johndiligent reacted to sciencegal in similar to the "it's too late, isn't it?" thread   
    I recommend asking for more time. It would be a very bad thing, in my opinion, to accept the offer and then withdraw it. Someone did that in my department once and the faculty was furious, especially for a reason such as this. They for sure will remember her name for a long time to come. Faculty members in your field may be your colleagues one day (if you go into academia) and you don't want the reason they recognize your name to be this reason.

    Depending on how many times you've emailed School A, it may not be a bad idea to email them on April 15th and ask if there is any update on funding. They may be waiting for applicants to turn down offers and release that funding for another student.
  11. Upvote
    johndiligent reacted to rising_star in similar to the "it's too late, isn't it?" thread   
    If you commit to School B on 4/15 and later school A offers you funding and you want to change, you will have to ask School B for a release from your commitment before you are able to formally accept School A's offer.
  12. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from hamster in Bad Luck?   
    I think it's true that many who call in find out that they were rejected, but I don't think it's because they asked. It's usually because the people calling in have noticed a significant amount of time pass or have seen admissions offers go out to other people... And when that's the case, rejection is more likely than an acceptance with full funding, sad to say.
  13. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from BCHistory in POI mixed feelings: Help!   
    I think you should ask the professor if you can call her sometime this week when it's mutually convenient. Tell her you're in the process of deciding on your offers and you'd like to discuss the programme and her short term/long term plans for the lab in some more detail.

    Then, talk to her for a half hour. Now that it's not an interview, there should hopefully be less awkwardness and if she really wants you in the programme, she'll definitely make indications during that time that she's trying to persuade you to come and sell you on its being the right fit for you.

    If after that conversation, you still have misgivings about her than I think you should go elsewhere. While it might not be a reflection on you (some academics just lack certain social graces - myself included!), you don't want to ALREADY have an advisor/student relationship where you're constantly second-guessing.
  14. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from Mathētēs in Help! Language classes!   
    I think the whole notion that some languages are easier to learn than others sort of misses the point. And as a Classics student, I've heard enough silly arguments over "Which is easier: Greek or Latin?" to know that it's pretty much entirely subjective and a silly way to make a decision. Learning a language really only becomes easier once you've learned several of them... your fourth language is easier than your third, your sixth your fifth and so on.

    Anyway, I think your ability to master any language really emerges from how motivated you are to do so. For that reason, I'd pick a language that is relevant to your research interests and not worry about the relative difficulties of each. If there are few works of interest in French, for example, you're going to have a much tougher time motivating yourself to learn it, even if it were an "easier" language to master.
  15. Upvote
    johndiligent reacted to scytheye in Bouncing off an English Major   
    I will graduate in a year with an English major. Sounds a bit screwy but I don't know what graduate program I want to go into.
    What are some common graduate programs that you have heard of by experience or word of mouth that look for English majors? It will help me round down my career choices.

    Thanks in advance,
    Josh
  16. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from origin415 in Second Thoughts   
    I think School A was honestly the better option and I think you're just experiencing a bit of buyer's remorse. And if it's about your girlfriend, she's only going to be a few hours away. Try not to stress, I think you made the right choice.

    No matter what choice you make, you're giving up the alternative, and as a result, you're going to feel a bit down about what might have been. But you can only pick one school and you can only make the best choice based on the best information you had at the time you made it.
  17. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from BrandNewName in POI mixed feelings: Help!   
    I think you should ask the professor if you can call her sometime this week when it's mutually convenient. Tell her you're in the process of deciding on your offers and you'd like to discuss the programme and her short term/long term plans for the lab in some more detail.

    Then, talk to her for a half hour. Now that it's not an interview, there should hopefully be less awkwardness and if she really wants you in the programme, she'll definitely make indications during that time that she's trying to persuade you to come and sell you on its being the right fit for you.

    If after that conversation, you still have misgivings about her than I think you should go elsewhere. While it might not be a reflection on you (some academics just lack certain social graces - myself included!), you don't want to ALREADY have an advisor/student relationship where you're constantly second-guessing.
  18. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from fuzzylogician in POI mixed feelings: Help!   
    I think you should ask the professor if you can call her sometime this week when it's mutually convenient. Tell her you're in the process of deciding on your offers and you'd like to discuss the programme and her short term/long term plans for the lab in some more detail.

    Then, talk to her for a half hour. Now that it's not an interview, there should hopefully be less awkwardness and if she really wants you in the programme, she'll definitely make indications during that time that she's trying to persuade you to come and sell you on its being the right fit for you.

    If after that conversation, you still have misgivings about her than I think you should go elsewhere. While it might not be a reflection on you (some academics just lack certain social graces - myself included!), you don't want to ALREADY have an advisor/student relationship where you're constantly second-guessing.
  19. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from ANP in POI mixed feelings: Help!   
    I think you should ask the professor if you can call her sometime this week when it's mutually convenient. Tell her you're in the process of deciding on your offers and you'd like to discuss the programme and her short term/long term plans for the lab in some more detail.

    Then, talk to her for a half hour. Now that it's not an interview, there should hopefully be less awkwardness and if she really wants you in the programme, she'll definitely make indications during that time that she's trying to persuade you to come and sell you on its being the right fit for you.

    If after that conversation, you still have misgivings about her than I think you should go elsewhere. While it might not be a reflection on you (some academics just lack certain social graces - myself included!), you don't want to ALREADY have an advisor/student relationship where you're constantly second-guessing.
  20. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from rising_star in POI mixed feelings: Help!   
    I think you should ask the professor if you can call her sometime this week when it's mutually convenient. Tell her you're in the process of deciding on your offers and you'd like to discuss the programme and her short term/long term plans for the lab in some more detail.

    Then, talk to her for a half hour. Now that it's not an interview, there should hopefully be less awkwardness and if she really wants you in the programme, she'll definitely make indications during that time that she's trying to persuade you to come and sell you on its being the right fit for you.

    If after that conversation, you still have misgivings about her than I think you should go elsewhere. While it might not be a reflection on you (some academics just lack certain social graces - myself included!), you don't want to ALREADY have an advisor/student relationship where you're constantly second-guessing.
  21. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from ANP in Acceptance Depression?   
    When I saw the title of this thread, I was like "Acceptance Depression? Someone is describing my life!"

    Seriously, it's been a really bizarre experience. For the two or three hours after each acceptance, I was thrilled. Ecstatic. Just over the moon to have been accepted somewhere (and I had GPA concerns similar to yours). But I can't deny that over this week, I've entered a really deep funk. I don't want to do anything and it's been a real struggle to get out of bed in the morning.

    What I think has happened is this: I was very anxious during the application process but once I'd sent off my applications - while there was worrying - it was idle worrying. It was worrying for the sake of doing something. But ultimately while waiting, there was nothing I could do wrong really. The ball was entirely out of my court.

    Now, I have three offers out there and the ball is entirely in my court. I have to make a choice in the next week. And the anxiety of potentially making the wrong choice plus all the stressful realities of relocating are hitting me all at once. And I think I'm sort of yearning for the lack of agency I had previously because, as many existentialists would observe, it's far more comfortable to be powerless than it is to be empowered.
  22. Upvote
    johndiligent reacted to fuzzylogician in Do schools mail out acceptances by regular mail?   
    It varies from program to program and, as suggested above, you can find out what your programs did in previous years by looking at the results page. I'd venture a guess that in most cases there is some (email or phone) contact prior to getting the official letter in the mail, but that's not always the case. I guess that in general, the bigger the program, the less chances of personalized contact.
  23. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from meowmeow in Acceptance Depression?   
    When I saw the title of this thread, I was like "Acceptance Depression? Someone is describing my life!"

    Seriously, it's been a really bizarre experience. For the two or three hours after each acceptance, I was thrilled. Ecstatic. Just over the moon to have been accepted somewhere (and I had GPA concerns similar to yours). But I can't deny that over this week, I've entered a really deep funk. I don't want to do anything and it's been a real struggle to get out of bed in the morning.

    What I think has happened is this: I was very anxious during the application process but once I'd sent off my applications - while there was worrying - it was idle worrying. It was worrying for the sake of doing something. But ultimately while waiting, there was nothing I could do wrong really. The ball was entirely out of my court.

    Now, I have three offers out there and the ball is entirely in my court. I have to make a choice in the next week. And the anxiety of potentially making the wrong choice plus all the stressful realities of relocating are hitting me all at once. And I think I'm sort of yearning for the lack of agency I had previously because, as many existentialists would observe, it's far more comfortable to be powerless than it is to be empowered.
  24. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from Piwi in Acceptance Depression?   
    When I saw the title of this thread, I was like "Acceptance Depression? Someone is describing my life!"

    Seriously, it's been a really bizarre experience. For the two or three hours after each acceptance, I was thrilled. Ecstatic. Just over the moon to have been accepted somewhere (and I had GPA concerns similar to yours). But I can't deny that over this week, I've entered a really deep funk. I don't want to do anything and it's been a real struggle to get out of bed in the morning.

    What I think has happened is this: I was very anxious during the application process but once I'd sent off my applications - while there was worrying - it was idle worrying. It was worrying for the sake of doing something. But ultimately while waiting, there was nothing I could do wrong really. The ball was entirely out of my court.

    Now, I have three offers out there and the ball is entirely in my court. I have to make a choice in the next week. And the anxiety of potentially making the wrong choice plus all the stressful realities of relocating are hitting me all at once. And I think I'm sort of yearning for the lack of agency I had previously because, as many existentialists would observe, it's far more comfortable to be powerless than it is to be empowered.
  25. Upvote
    johndiligent got a reaction from BCHistory in Acceptance Depression?   
    When I saw the title of this thread, I was like "Acceptance Depression? Someone is describing my life!"

    Seriously, it's been a really bizarre experience. For the two or three hours after each acceptance, I was thrilled. Ecstatic. Just over the moon to have been accepted somewhere (and I had GPA concerns similar to yours). But I can't deny that over this week, I've entered a really deep funk. I don't want to do anything and it's been a real struggle to get out of bed in the morning.

    What I think has happened is this: I was very anxious during the application process but once I'd sent off my applications - while there was worrying - it was idle worrying. It was worrying for the sake of doing something. But ultimately while waiting, there was nothing I could do wrong really. The ball was entirely out of my court.

    Now, I have three offers out there and the ball is entirely in my court. I have to make a choice in the next week. And the anxiety of potentially making the wrong choice plus all the stressful realities of relocating are hitting me all at once. And I think I'm sort of yearning for the lack of agency I had previously because, as many existentialists would observe, it's far more comfortable to be powerless than it is to be empowered.
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