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About rabbitlocks

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    2015 Fall
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  1. I am in need of some advice regarding my unique (as far as I can tell) situation. Basically, I am in the middle of a PhD program in Molecular and Cellular Biology, but would like to switch to Clinical Psychology. I have done some reading on Psy.D and PhD programs in Clinical Psych, and feel I would be much better suited for this field rather than my current one. Without getting too deep into personal matters, I essentially no longer find any joy in my current field of work, and I believe I would find much more meaning and fulfillment as a clinical psychologist or licensed therapist. I doubled majored in MCB and Psychology in undergrad (Top 40 school), and the PhD program I am currently in is consistently ranked #1 or #2 for MCB. I have done molecular bio research more or less full-time since my senior year of undergrad, but have ZERO experience in clinical psych. I spent a semester in undergrad working as a research assistant in a Cognitive Psych lab though, and did win a departmental award for my research there. Still, this feels very minor compared to what I imagine other applicants have in terms of research experience. I have tried to be as honest with myself as I can, and I do not believe this is just a case of getting cold feet as many people experience during their PhD years. My dream has been to get a PhD for a long time, and I do not want to give up on this. I just do not want it to be in a field where I see no future for myself. The reality is, I absolutely do not want to keep doing benchwork science in academia OR in biotech, and I do not want to settle for an alternative career (consulting, teaching) that I am not truly passionate about. For me, the bottom line is I want to help people with mental illnesses live better lives, whether that is through clinical research or as a licensed therapist. Mainly I am interested in hearing about what a typical to exceptional applicant to Clinical Psych doctorate programs looks like (GRE, research experience, etc.). I would also like to get a feel for what programs I might expect to get into (if any...) if I were to apply literally right now without doing anything else to add to my CV. What were your top choice schools? What do you think I would need to do in order to get into those programs? Relevant stats: Education/GPA: Currently a Molecular biology PhD candidate at top ranked university, 3.8 GPA. (Technically I would have a masters if I were to drop out of my program now as I have already passed my qualifying exam). Bachelors in MCB and Psychology, 3.7 GPA overall (Psychology GPA is higher) GRE: 170 V / 158 Q Research experience: 7 years of molecular bio, 1 semester of cognitive psych research. Currently in a neurobiology lab (albeit with no particular focus on mental disorders), although I rotated through one lab where my project dealt with genes involved in schizophrenia, and another lab where my project dealt with neurological correlates of depression. Teaching experience: 1 semester teaching a general biology course to ~100 students. Have also volunteered at elementary and middle schools as a science outreach instructor, as well as a science summer camp one year. Thank you in advance for your input!!
  2. You're right, I don't think it makes sense to add any more schools at this point. Even financially speaking, the thought of having paid all those application fees makes my head spin a little :| . All of the programs I've applied to are doing research that I have genuine interest in. I get the feeling that my interests are not as focused as a lot of other applicants, and that made it hard for me to narrow down my schools. On my SOP I defined a specific research focus that was tailored towards each school, but in reality I'm way more open-minded. Both you and insaneinthemembrane have good thoughts regarding choosing programs based on post-Phd statistics. That is not something I've given much thought to. Thanks!
  3. Undergrad Institution: Big State School not particularly known for life sciences, but good reputation overall Major(s): Molecular and Cellular Biology Minor(s): Psychology GPA in Major: 3.53 Overall GPA: 3.70 Position in Class: Top 20%. Type of Student: domestic female GRE Scores (revised/old version): Q: 158 (doh) V:170 (I don't even know) W: 5 Research Experience: 2 summers of research in a systems biology lab while in school, working more or less full time for those summers. >2 years research as a lab technician/manager at a prestigious university after graduation. 1 publication, middle author. Awards/Honors/Recognitions: Made Dean's List a few times. Got a recognition award for undergraduate research (not for biology though), and another award from a student organization. Pertinent Activities or Jobs: Wrote brief science articles for a non-profit for several months before starting my job. President of a student research organization while in school. Special Bonus Points: One of my recommenders is very famous in his field Applying to Where: Stanford Biosciences Harvard BBS MIT Dept of Biology UC Berkeley MCB CalTech Biology Johns Hopkins CMDB UCSF TETRAD Yale BBS Scripps Research Institute Washington University DBBS Duke Developmental and Stem Cell Biology Cornell Biological Sciences UCSD Biological Sciences Rockefeller Columbia Biological Sciences University of Chicago Biological Sciences Division University of Washington MCB UCLA Biosciences Northwestern Life and Biomedical Sciences, DGP (MPH, PhD program) UIUC MCB I'm realizing that I've applied to a LOT of schools... Mostly because I want to get into a great program, but feel incredibly miscalibrated on what my chances are at ANY given graduate program, so I really have no idea what to expect. I'm really scared I won't get in now. Vast majority of my apps are submitted, and the anxiety of waiting is really starting to get to me. Does anyone have any input on my list of schools? How did everyone else decide where to apply?
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