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About BrendonSW

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    Double Shot

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  • Location
    Baltimore, MD
  • Program
    PhD in Social Work

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  1. That's awesome! Congrats! Keep us updated. 😀
  2. Nice! My first choice listed was Eugene Walls. I also mentioned Donny, Jen, and Kim! All four of these faculty seem super invested in LGBTQ+ health. I’m really drawn to Jen due to her political background— I’ve done a lot of activism and many universities condemn it. She really sold me on DU due to how the school has supported her in her political work.
  3. Good to know! I’m very nervous. I’ve been checking my email and the DU portal way too much. Did you apply before the December 1st deadline or the January 15th deadline? Also, who are you hoping to work with there?
  4. You sound like a fantastic candidate! Congrats on your early admission offer with WUSTL! Is there a school that you’d say is your number one choice?
  5. When I spoke with someone from MSU, they said they'd be making decisions on or around January 22nd. She said I'd likely hear back at the end of January. MSU would be a great program to work with faculty researching older adults! Are there specific faculty members you're interested in working with? Also, I currently live in Maryland and work at Johns Hopkins. If you'd like to know more about Maryland or UMBC, feel free to ask! My top school is the University of Denver (DU). I ended up applying to DU, MSU, and U-Michigan. Since I applied by the early deadline at Denver, they said I'll likely hear back this month. I'm very nervous considering how competitive the program is. I really like DU because they seem to use an anti-oppressive lens, and recent graduates of the program spoke very highly of their experience. I'm hoping to focus my research on transgender and nonbinary health, and DU has a few faculty who are really dedicated to this area of research.
  6. Good luck to you! I hope you hear back soon. I submitted my applications by the 12/1 or 12/15 deadline at all schools and haven’t heard back yet. I believe I will hear back from Univ. of Denver and Michigan State sometime this month. Univ. of Michigan on the other hand tends to take longer. In the past, applicants have heard back mid-to-end of February. The wait is definitely the hardest part for me. One day I’m optimistic, the next I’m super anxious! Any idea when you’ll start hearing back? Here’s hoping for some positive news soon!
  7. You sound like a great applicant! When I spoke with potential advisors at the schools I applied to, they all said that each candidate is reviewed holistically. I didn’t do very well on the GRE and I won’t have my first publication until this year, so I can understand why you’d be a bit worried. With that said, almost everyone I talked with said that the personal statement (or statement of purpose) is typically the most important piece of your application. They really want to know that you’re ready for a PhD and that there’s going to be support and a good faculty fit for you. Having a faculty fit is extremely important. The GRE doesn’t define who you are or your worthiness for a PhD program! Is there a program you really want to get into? Best of luck to you, keep us posted!
  8. Ah! I misread. FAFSA does send a letter in February/March. I was thinking about the social work department’s scholarships for you. Those usually come within a week of receiving an acceptance (in my experience). I believe my FAFSA came in February. The FAFSA for MSW programs really outlines which federal loans you’re eligible to receive. I don’t believe I received any federal aid for grad school.
  9. When I received my acceptance letters, the award letter typically came within a week. Now that 2 weeks have passed, have you received your letter yet?
  10. I think you should reach out to them. Sure, it might feel a little late, but life happens and people delay things like this for a reason. You can also acknowledge this in your email. Although it may feel late to you, sending an email like this reminds them of who you are, shows you're invested, and could also influence one of the PI's to put in a word with the admissions review committee for you. You never know, one of the PI's may even be on that committee. I think it's 100% worth reaching out. Here's somewhat of a template that I might use: "Dear ____, I hope you're doing well and having a great week so far! I am emailing you to let you know that I submitted my application to the Neuroscience PhD program a few weeks ago. I have been meaning to send you an email to inform you, but life has gotten busy and I'm just now getting around to this. Based on our conversations (you can say "about ______"), I am super excited to potentially work with you. Our conversation really encouraged me to apply to the program, and I wanted to personally thank you for that. Best (Name)" Good luck!
  11. Fingers crossed! When do you expect to hear back from most schools? Do you have 1-2 schools that you're leaning toward or hoping for?
  12. Based on my experience, I'd offer similar advice. Check in with the financial office and see if there's a way to be considered for more financial aid. I'd check in with the financial aid office located within the School of Social Work. I'd also look on the school's website to see what scholarships are available. As I mentioned above, sometimes there are only a few applicants for scholarships, so you have a better chance than you may think!
  13. 2 years later and I'm finally back on this site! I will go ahead and respond just in case anyone happens to check this thread wanting to know the same information. I emailed Tim Colenback regarding the re-review. When I reached out to him, I explained that I had not been offered enough funds to justify attending U of M and wanted to know if there was any additional aid I could apply for. He responded with a form for me to fill out and asked me to submit an essay basically outlining why I need the money, my career goals, etc. I believe the essay was around 5-7 pages long. I submitted everything to him in mid-April and received a response in late May stating that my request had been declined. I didn't respond to the "rejection" email and was pleasantly surprised when I was awarded additional funds 2-3 weeks later. Thinking back on it, it probably wouldn't have hurt to send him a thank you email after the rejection and a reminder that I still needed more funds if they became available. Regardless, I was able to receive more funds and decided to attend U of M. My initial scholarship amount was *deep breath* $3,000 per semester. I personally would have never attended without more money. Ann Arbor is not an affordable area. I've lived in Nashville and Baltimore and found Ann Arbor to be more expensive than both. During the re-review, I requested an additional $12,000 per semester. Ultimately, I received $15,000 each semester and ended up still going $40,000+ in debt for a program that took me less than a year to complete. To answer the question above, they never told me about a maximum amount. However, I did meet a student in the program who was from out-of-state and she received a full scholarship to attend the MSW program. Her tuition was completely covered. My advice: push them. Advocate for yourself. Advocate for yourself all the way up until your orientation and continue to advocate for yourself after that. People drop out of the program, they defer, many students don't accept to attend, etc. which makes funds become available throughout the school year. Also, apply for ANY scholarships offered through the SSW. I currently sit on a scholarship review committee and there is typically a very small applicant pool for SSW scholarships. Hope this helps someone!
  14. Good luck! Are most of your deadlines coming up on December 1? One of mine (U of Michigan) is coming up on the 18th of this month...
  15. Hi folks! My name is Brendon and I used this site a lot back in 2016 when I was applying to MSW programs. Since the site was so helpful then, I wanted to create a thread for those looking into PhD programs in Social Work to be admitted in 2020. I started looking into programs in late 2018 and began making faculty connections then. Over the past month or so, I've officially decided to apply. I haven't 100% decided on where I'm applying but I have a few programs in mind. Those include: (1) University of Michigan, (2) Wash. University in St. Louis, (3) Michigan State University, (4) University of Denver, (5) Hunter College, and lastly, (6) University of Washington. I'd like to only apply to 3-4 schools, so I'm currently trying to eliminate 2-3 from my list. My main priority is having a program that feels supportive of me, my interests, and my professional goals. I specifically want to work with LGBTQ+ people (even more specifically, trans and nonbinary folks), so finding an affirming school is also a priority. How are other folks feeling? Do you have a few schools in mind? What are your main areas of interest? I really wanted to create this thread as a way for us to support one another and possibly get answers! It's nice to know you aren't alone when going through this process and that there's an entire community of people going through something similar.
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