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About Cervello

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  • Application Season
    2017 Fall
  • Program
    Neuroscience PhD

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  1. @Eigen Thank you, belatedly, for your response. Much appreciated.
  2. If you win a NSF grant, does it make sense to defer the grant for a year or two so that you'll have more flexibility in choosing a lab head who may not otherwise be able to fund you? Or do most ppl have the grant immediately start when they enter grad school, which would benefit the program over an individual PI? Pros/cons to either decision?
  3. Cervello

    Columbia vs UCSF

    First, I'd like to say again that I agreed with most of what you had to say and thought you were well spoken (well, actually, well written :-) ). But I still don't think the lifestyle point is all that critical to making this decision because we're considering two urban areas, both of which offer great city culture and also outdoor activities within 40 mins from town. I've lived in NYC for six years and have spent time in SF visiting friends and family. Obviously, SF has better weather, but people I know in SF, many of whom were my best friends in college, are just as happy there as they were here, and doing many of the same things. Outside of work, for those who aren't grad students & have more time to kill, or lab/class for those who are but are trying to get some downtime, they're either doing typical urban stuff or they're outdoors hiking, just we do here in NYC. There's amazing hiking under an hour away from midtown. Great softball league in Central Park. Terrific beaches on Long Island. One thing we have in NYC that SF doesn't have at quite the same level is theater, but they still have some good stuff happening in that realm, too. Maybe it's just that I think people who are tech, comp sci, biotech, lab ppl are more alike than they are different no matter what coast they're on. All I'm saying is that I don't think it's a big distinguishing factor to consider, except for weather. One might really prefer the weather on one coast over the other. Finally, I never claimed that my undergrad experience was representative of the popular college experience. In fact, I was claiming the opposite. In schools like mine, nearly half the undergrad population is from the 3 states I named (CA, MA & NY), while the other half is hugely diverse. Since those 3 states are heavily represented, you tend to meet plenty of ppl from those states and begin to recognize that ppl who grow up on the coasts tend to have more in common than not. And lastly, my comment wasn't meant to speak to the differences between grad school and undergrad. I've been a tech for 2 years at Columbia, my undergrad institution. It's a world of difference, not least because I'm no longer on the undergrad campus but rather up at the medical center, and like the grad students & post docs in my lab, I'm working full time and really long hours with only 2 weeks off a year. The only undergrads I see are those working in labs up here. I imagine it's the same where you are, since Longwood and many of the Harvard labs are in Boston and even Belmont. So yeah, given my own experience the last two years, I agree with you: undergrad and grad school are little alike, even though I worked in a lab as an undergrad every semester from freshman year and every summer. As an undergrad involved in a lot of different ECs, my lab work didn't define me the way it does now. And for whatever it's worth, I don't mean to be contentious with you, especially because I agree with and value much of what you've posted here on Grad Cafe. I think you've given great, solid advice. I simply didn't agree with the one, minor, point.
  4. Cervello

    Columbia vs UCSF

    UCSF does provide subsidized housing but only about 1/3 of those applying for it get it, and you can only live in it for 2 years. However, I think that if you live off campus, they give you extra funds beyond the stipend to help with housing. If there's a UCSF grad student here, maybe they can confirm this. As far as being an east coast vs west coast person, I don't think there's really such a binary. I'm in NYC where many ppl are transplants from elsewhere, many from the opposite coast. Can't really distinguish between us. I went to an Ivy for undergrad where, like all its peer schools, nearly 1/2 the student body is from 3 states: CA, NY and MA. Again, we had more in common than not. And SF is full of classmates of mine who grew up out east but got jobs in tech straight out of college. So I don't think weighing which "type" you are should matter. But the rest of blc073's advice is right on point, solid, and well said.
  5. I have a friend who was waitlisted last year. He was told that they don't waitlist that many people. It's around 1-2, possibly 3 per an area, for instance systems neuroscience. He didn't hear back until April 16 or 17, and didn't get in.
  6. OMG. I won one too. I'm in shock. Never thought I'd get it. Was hoping for an honorable mention. I have a BS but haven't begun grad school yet. I'm a lab tech. E/E, VG/VG, VG/VG
  7. Woke up this morning to an email telling me I won the NSF GRF. I'm in shock. Never thought I'd get it. Was hoping for an honorable mention. Now I've got to decide where I'm going to grad school.
  8. OMG. I won the NSF GRF. How did that happen? I'm shocked. Great way to begin the weekend, that's for sure. Now I just have to decide where I'm going.
  9. Hoping a UCSF student responds to questions posted above! Thanks in advance.
  10. Got an acceptance email from JHU this afternoon! Psyched!
  11. I know UCSF doesn't guarantee housing but for a first-year, what's the likelihood of getting housing at Mission Bay? It's convenient to classes, so makes sense to try. Also, do most ppl who get mission bay housing opt to stay in it their second year, or move off campus? And final question, if you don't get on campus housing, what neighborhoods are best to look at for housing if your classes and labs are at Mission Bay? My criteria are closeness to mission campus, safety and cost. I won't have a car, so I'd like proximity to services like grocery store, too. Thanks for your response!
  12. Heard from Yale BBS today in an unofficial email. Was told official email will come early this upcoming week.
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