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About diehtc0ke

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  1. diehtc0ke

    Philadelphia, PA

    I actually go to Penn but I live and have lived with people who go to Villanova. The train ride isn't terrible. We live in West Philly and the train ride is about an hour and pleasant enough though it does involve a transfer. It seems like most of the grad students I know live in either Center City or West Philly and do the commute thing. That means they haven't needed cars, which is a good thing because I find Philly to be quite a hassle when you have a car (ie, there are too many blocks which require a parking permit to park for more than two hours, there's absolutely no parking outside of a parking garage in center city at any reasonable hour of day, etc). That said I do know someone who goes there and lives in West Philly with a car and it can be useful. I myself have a Zipcar account and that's worked out really well, imo. And Philly is totally a bike city--you'd have no problems there. Hope that helps.
  2. I did end up getting in but chose to go to another school for various reasons that I can outline in a PM if you're really interested. If your avatar is any indication, we probably have very similar research interests.
  3. If Rutgers is conducting its waitlist process as it has been in years past (I was on the waitlist a couple of years ago), they probably will keep in good contact with you, letting you know your chances of an acceptance over the next few weeks. The last thing they want is for a potential student to find themselves in the position you're describing and the DGS was nothing but forward with me about my chances and my position on my field's waitlist.
  4. To be quite honest, I doubt that most admissions committees would be able to remember your previous application and with the amount of applications that these programs get, I would be seriously surprised if any of them went through the trouble of going back to that application, even if you specifically indicate that you've applied to that school before. I say this as someone who sent an extremely rushed application to a top 10 school my senior year of college (and by rushed I mean I threw together a writing sample and a personal statement the night before they were due), was rejected and had similar concerns. I ended up applying to that same school with a completely new sample, a new personal statement, and radically different research interests my second go around and got in.
  5. There's nothing here that would indicate that you have no shot at top 20 PhD programs but without seeing the quality of your writing, anyone's guess is little more than a shot in the dark since it will be your writing that overwhelmingly determines whether you are accepted or not.
  6. With regards to your first inquiry, I'm going to answer your question with a question. If there are two programs that have at least four professors you want to work with, barring something else, why aren't you applying to both programs anyway? Are there really that many programs that have 4 to 9 people you want to work with? Really evaluate what "finding a professor interesting" actually means and if it's really just "that random string of words that they put together on their faculty page sounds like fun," you might want to be a bit more critical about whether or not you actually want to count them as a professor you can work with. Things like whether or not a specific professor takes on a certain kind of grad student is information that you can glean once you get into a program--believe me, you'll run out of questions at those admitted students weekends rather quickly and these kinds of questions have much less of a chance of looking stalker-ish once you've been accepted. Chances are, even with "only" four professors that you can see yourself working with, at least one of them will be taking on grad students. Alternatively, if you do decide to ask grad students these questions, I would ask now, before the semester starts and (hopefully) before yet another wave of work washes over them. With the C.V. stuff, I would agree with runonsentence's suggestion to create a "Related Work Experience" heading. I can't imagine that hurting your application at all. And as for the honors thesis, I really have no opinion other than everyone I know who is in an English PhD program (including myself) did one and went about letting departments know about it in different ways. Some people used a chapter or some significant segment of it for their writing sample. I mentioned that I wrote one on my C.V. but only because I presented that work at a conference. My writing sample ended up being something completely different and unrelated to my honors thesis. Others didn't bother mentioning that they did one at all. Doing one doesn't hurt but not doing one doesn't seem to detract too much (if anything) either.
  7. As someone who went through a situation like this one, I would choose the top-ranked program. In my case, it was between a lesser ranked school with an advisor who was perfect for me and a top 10 program with a few people that I was excited to work with but weren't as close of a fit. I chose the top 10 program in the end because I ultimately didn't want to bank my graduate career on one person. I mean, who knows what will happen in the next five to seven years? I figured I would feel much more secure in the hands of 5 or 6 people who may not directly work on what I work on but could all lend their expertise to my work in different and fascinating ways. Even if it weren't for the fact that the program I'm in now had multiple people to work with, I probably still would have chosen it for many of the reasons that have been detailed in these posts. This becomes more and more true as the gap between reputations becomes larger. Editing yet again to add that there would also be nothing stopping you from keeping in contact with that perfect advisor if you turn his or her school down.
  8. That's exactly how you should approach the situation. I'm also assuming (maybe erroneously so) that you have other schools to hear back from so I'd suggest you revel (privately lol) in your successes a little bit more before you have to make the tough decisions. You never know what can happen between now and April 15th.
  9. I also missed the first post. Does this mean the school that is top in your field isn't giving you any money? Or only a first-year fellowship?
  10. They do mean actually teaching your own course. I went to a CUNY school for undergrad and many of (even upper level) courses were taught by graduate students from the Grad Center and I find that for many that seemed to be a rewarding experience. One woman was teaching courses that directly related to her dissertation work and so being able to bounce ideas off of a willing audience once a week was very useful. Even if you're teaching a survey course, there are ways to gerrymander the curriculum to be tangentially related to your interests (and if you're a medievalist, they're not going to force you to teach American Lit II). On the other hand, it is very demanding and you're going to have to evaluate whether it's worth it. I didn't meet anyone who was in their second year so I can't speak to the rigor of that year in particular but it was running people in their dissertation years ragged because some were teaching three courses while also trying to finish their dissertation. I don't mean to scare you (and those that I've kept in touch with have either finished their dissertations and have gone on to great post docs or are in their final stages so it's definitely doable) but you'll really have to assess whether going to this (rather fine) institution in New York City is worth the hassle that will eventually come up. I should also speak to that travel component. I'm not sure if you're from NYC or not (I hope that doesn't sound condescending; I don't mean it to) but the vast majority of the CUNY schools are fairly accessible by public transportation and I didn't know anyone who had to go to more than two sites--the Graduate Center and then the campus they're assigned to teach at. The only school I'd really worry about is the College of Staten Island but you get to pick schools that you're interested in so hopefully that will work out for you. If you have any directed questions about how CUNY functions or anything like that, feel free to send a PM. I did get into the Grad Center last year and like I said I went to a CUNY school for undergrad so I have at least a tenuous grasp on the bureaucracy that is the city public university system.
  11. Congratulations, English and to the other two acceptances as well. As a fellow African Americanist, I'm both jealous and overjoyed for you.
  12. In CUNY's defense, decisions are still probably being made. I remember freaking out last year when a bunch of acceptances and rejections had come up and I hadn't received anything. I then received an acceptance a few days (maybe even a week) later. Of course, that acceptance came without funding but I can't tell you for sure that that had anything to do with the tardiness in the decision. Until you have firmly received a rejection, don't count yourself out.
  13. I know that many CUNY 4-year schools (not the Graduate Center) offer graduate courses in English in the Fall and many of those programs are geared towards those who want to receive their Master's for teaching.(Edit: And because they are urban public institutions the cost is about as minimal as is possible.)
  14. They want you to do an interview and called it a prospectives weekend? That's strange phrasing. Usually a prospectives weekend is for those who have already been accepted. I didn't even know Duke did interviews. Jesus. And where the hell are my manners? Congratulations!
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