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About Throwaway1

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  1. School visit question

    @TakeruK Thank you so much, that does make me feel a bit better. I really appreciate your reply - you always give good advice!
  2. School visit question

    I have a final school visit planned for next week, but at this point I found my absolute perfect fit and I've signed the paperwork and everything. The school I would be visiting is a very loose research fit and I definitely don't see the visit changing my mind at all. I really don't want to burn a bridge since academia can be a small community, but I would rather not take two unpaid days off work if the school is not even in the running, and I'd rather not waste their time either. I guess my question is, if I am honest with the PI that I have found a better fit and would rather not come, do you think I would burn bridges? Is there a way to do this and maintain good will or should I just suck it up and go?
  3. Rank Over Fit

    @fuzzylogician The number I got came from US News & World Report, though from what I understand it's not the best source. And then on it gives a range of rankings of 89-130.
  4. Rank Over Fit

    @Eigen Thanks! I appreciate the response, it definitely makes me less anxious!
  5. Rank Over Fit

    @fuzzylogician Thanks for the reply! The rank is unfortunately for the geology department. The school has a pretty good rank for other science departments (not sure why geology is so low). My advisor has a good track record and connections with both industry and academia, and from what I've read in the graduate placement reports the department has been successful with that (though they haven't put out one of those reports in about 5 years, so I'm going on older information). I hope to go into academia after. I really would like to go to this school, but I'm just worried about shooting myself in the foot by choosing a lower ranked school.
  6. Rank Over Fit

    I've applied to a number of PhD programs in hydrogeology. One of the schools I would really like to go to has a pretty low ranking (though the placement reports do indicate people get jobs in research and academia after graduation), but the fit is much better for me than most of the other schools I applied to. The ranking shows quite a bit of difference on US News rankings compared to most of the other schools I applied to (113 ranking versus 42 to 77 rankings for other schools I applied to). Ranking aside, it seems like an amazing fit for me. I would be working with two people I really respect who have a good publishing record and a good record of students as first authors. I would get to work on a couple projects that I'm really excited about, and the school is in a city I think I would like to live in (visiting soon). I'm just worried about getting a job at a university or national lab afterwards. Should I go to a school with a better rank even if it seems like a bit less of a good fit?