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Everything posted by MarineBluePsy

  1. MarineBluePsy

    Homesickness & Visiting Family

    This was not my experience as I couldn't wait to get away from my family, but others in my program echo your concerns. For those who's family are maybe 6-8 hours away by car they tend to go home on long weekends and breaks as others have suggested. They also discussed this with their families and their parents drive out to them and spend the weekend every 4-6 weeks. I don't know if this is feasible for your family, but it couldn't hurt to start exploring it as a possibility now. Scheduling Skype chats or phone calls can also help you stay connected, especially if the weather is a factor in driving conditions.
  2. MarineBluePsy

    What excites you about your research?

    Though I'm not in Sociology, what excites me about my research is that I'm focusing on groups that are overlooked and shouldn't be given their extensive needs.
  3. @21n14l If you're able to find publicly available information about their current work then no I don't think its strange to reach out with a couple of follow up questions. If you're not finding publicly available information about their work then it may increase your chances of a response if you went through the faculty member you're interviewing for or if there is a liaison you've been told to send your interview/application related questions to. You could simply state that you noticed the website hasn't been updated and you wondered if any of the students might be open to a quick email regarding their current work. The professor or liaison will likely just forward your request to the students and encourage them to respond. If you decide to email students directly I'd keep it short and sweet. Maybe something like......Hi Student, I'll be interviewing with Professor soon and I'd love to learn a bit about your recent work. I'm sure you're quite busy, but unfortunately the website doesn't mention any projects from the last few years. Care to share any info? Thanks for your time. This gives them the option of just whipping up a couple of lines, attaching a CV, pointing you to a publicly available source for up to date information, etc.
  4. Did you try linkedin? Some of the students may be on there.
  5. During my application season I directly asked faculty and students about strengths and weaknesses of the program. There is no such thing as a perfect program so places that refused to acknowledge that anything could be improved upon didn't sit well with me. There also needs to be some reading between the lines and basic observation when interacting with students that can give you a ton of information. If the students don't seem welcoming during your visit and instead seem exhausted and unhappy, then perhaps whatever is happening behind the scenes isn't great. If questions about certain aspects of the program are ignored or responded to with the same cookie cutter sounds good response then perhaps there is another side of the story that would significantly impact your decision.
  6. MarineBluePsy

    "Kiddie Tax" on Fellowship

    It might be a good idea to contact a qualified tax professional and have them review your circumstances. If you have already done that and are still concerned there is nothing wrong with you getting a second opinion.
  7. MarineBluePsy

    Interview attire (non-clinical/counseling)

    I think its wise to aim for business casual regardless of what types of programs you're applying for. I used to live in a warmer climate and opted not to spend money trying to find outfits for interviews in colder climates. Instead I just layered. So I'd wear a dress with a tank top (if you have a thermal one great) under, sweater tights, and a cardigan or blazer. Then I had mittens (a scarf would probably also help, but I didn't have one) and borrowed a full length heavy winter coat which kept me extremely warm so it didn't matter that I wasn't wearing 12 layers of things. For footwear I bought a pair of inexpensive rain boots to wear outside and then carried a pair of ballet flats in my purse. When we got to whatever destination I just changed my shoes and it was no problem, in fact several other women did this so apparently this is common.
  8. MarineBluePsy

    Interview Weekend - Staying with a grad student?

    Well first let me say that you do not have to stay with a student if you'd prefer not to. You can always contact the applicant interview coordinator and say that you appreciate the option to stay with a student, but you already have overnight accommodations. If you do decide to stay with a grad student think of it like crashing at a friends place. You might be on the couch or on an air mattress and privacy will be limited. If you have pet allergies, dislike cigarette smoke, or prefer a same gender host then definitely mention that to the applicant interview coordinator immediately. In my application season it was not uncommon for male and female students to host and applicants were not always matched by gender. I personally was not bothered by this, but everyone is different. Also keep in mind that you're on the students' schedule. Meaning expect that if they're leaving to go do something on campus then you'll be tagging along or another student will be taking you somewhere. Its unlikely to be like a hotel where you can chill solo for several hours to decompress. I personally found this very irritating and wouldn't do the student host thing again, but other people enjoy this.
  9. I'm not sure how you go about growing a thicker skin since I've been lucky to always have one. I do think its important to remember that someone has to challenge traditional views with new perspectives and right now that person is you. If your perspective wasn't valuable then you wouldn't have gotten a journal to give you a revise and resubmit with what sounds like minimal feedback. Negative comments can also push you to make your work even better despite their initial sting.
  10. When I reach this point I will not be using my primary advisor as a reference. I have compiled several others that will actually say positive things about my abilities, whereas my primary advisor won't do that. Sure some potential employers may find this odd and may reach out to my primary advisor on their own which I can't prevent. If my primary advisor chooses to be negative that will seem odd stacked against several positive references from others who worked closely with me.
  11. MarineBluePsy

    Start Date for PhD programs?

    In general programs that only accept students in the Fall start whenever the Fall semester or quarter begins, which could be August or September. Earlier start dates may be required depending on how the student is funded (for example a TA or RA position that starts in the summer) or there are mandatory classes or trainings in the summer.
  12. MarineBluePsy

    Do graduate schools count community college GPA?

    Your community college GPA will be combined with the GPA from the University you transferred to in order to complete your Bachelor's. For fields that don't require a Master's degree to enter a PhD program, those degrees are usually viewed separately. In some cases a high GPA in a Master's program can help an applicant that didn't do well in undergrad.
  13. MarineBluePsy

    Choice to rerank POIs

    You don't need to change your rank order of POIs for the form, just stick with the order you used in your SOP. Faculty know that applicants are asked to rank more than one POI and I doubt they take it personally. Sometimes its really hard to choose the order and you end up just picking a random rank order for POIs. I imagine this happens when they have to choose applicants at times so it isn't a huge deal. During my application cycle I was invited to interview with a POI that I ranked second and not who I ranked first and it was no big deal. My first choice decided at the last minute not to take a student and my second choice was. We never discussed it and the interview was fine.
  14. MarineBluePsy

    Results section: hard time being concise

    It also may help to have a peer review it or use your University Writing Center. Sometimes a fresh set of eyes reveals several editing options.
  15. Yeah you want to list the organization where you worked with him. People move on all the time so schools/employers won't find this bizarre. If you're asked about it you can just say he later left the company for a new opportunity.
  16. MarineBluePsy

    CV - how to address unfinished degrees / transfers?

    You could list it in the education history section and just state how many units (or credit hours) were completed. So it might look something like this: University of School City, State Major: Related Field 60 units completed
  17. MarineBluePsy

    Is it normal to feel bored in a Masters program

    I don't know if its normal to feel bored in a Master's program or even a PhD program, but I've certainly experienced it. I experienced boredom in Undergrad too though. The difference I have found is that in Undergrad it seemed like there was less flexibility to explore my interests in some ways. There were so many general education requirements and even though I could choose which class to take to fulfill a requirement sometimes there weren't many choices and I disliked all of them. My psych classes were more interesting because that was my major, but there wasn't always time to focus on what I was actually interested in because broad content had to be covered. In my Master's and now in my PhD I find that even though I'm bored at times there is more flexibility to focus on my actual interests. I can pick a presentation or paper topic that fits my interests rather than being assigned a random topic like many of my Undergrad classes did. I also have more flexibility to learn beyond the classroom and often attend community lectures/talks, read research articles/books independently, and can obtain hands on experience through research or clinical work.
  18. MarineBluePsy

    Virtual Writing Sessions?

    Interesting idea. Having this thread moved to the Writing forum might generate more interest.
  19. MarineBluePsy

    TA or not???

    If you have not already, it might help to ask students in your department who are TAing what it is like and how they're balancing the workload. TAing means different things to different professors. Sometimes it might mean you hold study groups and guest lecture regularly and other times it might mean you make copies and maybe do a little grading. You also want to find out what sort of training/support is available if you need help or a student comes to you with a crisis.
  20. MarineBluePsy

    Research Conference

    I know they also make cream of wheat and cream of rice cups if you prefer that to oatmeal, so several options if you have a little time to look.
  21. MarineBluePsy

    Research Conference

    I'd suggest being open to going out to dinner because you may meet others from the conference that may be great connections and chats about how they can help you (and vice versa) could be done over dinner. Its not required for you to do this, but if the opportunity presents itself and you'd like to then go for it. In a situation like this its ok to make a joke about hoping there's student budget friendly options on the menu and the other party will get the clue and not suggest some place too expensive. As far as food in your hotel room I am a big fan of oatmeal cups. I guess these could be for dinner, but I prefer to have them for breakfast and then treat whatever the conference provides for breakfast as a midmorning snack. I make these using the coffee pot.....just put plain water in it, no filter needed, and put the oatmeal cup where the coffee cup would go. It's a good idea to run a cycle of plain water that you discard to get rid of any coffee bits first. I suppose you could also make cup of noodles or similar items in this same fashion. Otherwise I keep protein bars, cheese sticks, or cups of yogurt in the fridge in addition to bottled water and something with electrolytes (gatorade, vitamin water, etc). Now if you really want a hot option check out the following link. I haven't tried this, but I know this kind of thing is popular in college dorms where you often can't have hot plates, toaster ovens, etc. You can use an ironing board in place of a cutting board. https://www.geniuskitchen.com/recipe/hot-iron-grilled-cheese-sandwich-514164
  22. MarineBluePsy

    Research Conference

    Well if they're providing stuff, make sure you hit that table early and grab a few things to stuff in your purse for later. They will run out and you will get busy networking, going to talks, etc. Not all conferences have a designated lunch break and often there are lunch hour talks or workshops, so its great to have a snack on hand so you don't have to miss anything.
  23. MarineBluePsy

    Research Conference

    1) I wouldn't make firm plans for after the conference in case you're invited to a networking happy hour or you meet people you'd like to chat further with and you decide to grab dinner. You're not required to use your time this way, but the option may present itself. Otherwise have a list of things of interest in the city so you don't just go back to the hotel. 2) For footwear you can't go wrong with boots. Not like hiking boots, but a nicer pair that doesn't have a heel (like riding boots) can be comfortable for all kinds of feet and are good for lots of walking. They work with jeans, skinny pants, or skirts so its less to pack in a suitcase. It is ok to wear dressy sandals if the weather is warm. Bring a light sweater because the conference rooms will likely be cold. 3) Find out if the conference will be publishing the abstracts/powerpoints of all the presentations on their website or in a special journal issue after the conference. If they are then you can just carry a small notebook to jot the occasional thought or question. I just did this and it was wonderful. I only carried my purse instead of that and lugging my laptop bag around. Other tips.....have some business cards. They don't need to be fancy, just something with your name, contact info, and the field you're in. Also carry a bottle of water, a few small snacks (trail mix, cheese sticks, a protein bar, etc), hand sanitizer, and something for headaches.
  24. MarineBluePsy

    Diversity Statement

    If you feel comfortable disclosing then you can. I'm not sure how you plan to work with older adults, but there are a ton of unanswered questions regarding LGBT aging that you may or may not have a unique perspective on. If being trans has given you any insight into the struggles of other minority groups or a way of finding common ground you could discuss that.
  25. MarineBluePsy

    Last minute panic attack

    Is your Master's thesis really that bad or are you just feeling less confident? If it really wasn't good then perhaps one of your class papers will suffice as a writing sample. You can talk with your advisor about their thoughts on selecting your best piece of work.

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