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  1. I can relate to this... I'm close to 30, married, and in my first year of a PhD program. I've played down my "adult"ness in order to bond better with my cohort. It's probably been easier to initially make friends with the 22 - 24 year olds around me because I tried to avoid mentioning the things that make me seem different, and once I started being more open about sharing parts of my past and present life, people have been cool with it. Although I did start getting invited to bars and stuff less... When I DON'T want my adultness taken away, I've found that I have to be really proactive at
  2. I applied last year, and I got a lot more rejections than I was expecting. It definitely stung. Even in my first year, though, I've started to realize the ways that the program I'm attending and (from a more limited perspective) the only other one that gave me an offer are more suited to me as a researcher than some of the programs that rejected me. For example, I knew what I wanted to research, but I've started to learn the nuances of that research area enough to see how I probably wouldn't have been as good of a fit for at least half of my rejections. I'm almost grateful to have been rejecte
  3. I'm a 1st year PhD student (on quarters) in an engineering field, and I am required to TA in my first year. The spring quarter is super heavy for coursework in my program, and since it's my first time TAing, I applied for and accepted TAship in an undergrad class that seemed very appropriate for my background based on the course name and the catalog description. However, the instructor sent us a copy of the syllabus today, and the course is almost entirely about a completely different topic! All the topics that were explicitly listed on the course description are either crammed into a couple o
  4. My classes start again on Monday, and most people STILL haven't heard about TA assignments. Since TA-ing this year is a program requirement, I feel like someone should have an answer by now, but maybe none of us got one... As someone who likes to plan, not knowing what my schedule will be like for this upcoming term is starting to drive me nuts.
  5. On the topic of annoying downstairs neighbors, my downstairs neighbors let their children bounce basketballs all over the apartment, so it sounds like someone is constantly (and poorly) playing a bass drum for hours. It's been fall break for them this past week, and it's really obnoxious. Talking to the parents would accomplish nothing because they refuse to talk to anyone, so I'm contemplating buying myself a basketball and doing some dribbling of my own. ?
  6. I'm doing a research rotation in my first term, and I'm really regretting it. I feel like I'm just floating here. I don't really know what I'm doing, and I'm not "assigned" under anyone for this rotation so it's always a struggle to figure out who to ask for help. When I do ask, I feel like I'm bothering people because most rotational students ARE working with someone directly, so no one really has any time to set aside to help me get started. It's hard to even track anyone down sometimes because it's computational stuff. Plus, I have a desk that I've sort of been assigned, but sometimes
  7. This is the pettiest complaint ever, but I can't help myself. There are two people in my group who will be taking over my work, and it seems like the person I don't like is getting all of my cool projects. She's one of those competitive people that like to try to take credit for your work if you let her. I've spent so much time keeping her from sharing my ideas as her own and taking credit for my hard work that I don't want her to benefit from the foundations I've set up for these projects. I'd much rather give them to the other person in my group, who has been considerate and collaborati
  8. I'm living in campus housing in the fall, and I need to set up my electricity account with the provider before I can move in. Apparently this MUST be done over the phone, and the automated message warned me that the wait to speak to someone will be more than an hour! ?
  9. I ended up saying no to submitting my letter. The conversation went something like this: Me: "I'm not comfortable resigning right now. I would prefer to wait until I am positive I will actually be leaving and I have all the information" VP: "If you think you're going to leave anyway, what does it matter if you get additional information?" Me: "Well... Even if the news isn't relevant to me, it's not going to hurt me to get as much information as possible before I make an official decision. It seems pretty obviously in my best interests to just wait, unless you can give me some informat
  10. Whelp, to confirm my suspicions, I found out that one of my recommendation providers (the former director of my group) had been dropping people I still work with/for info about my plans to go back to school this fall. So even though I never officially announced it to anyone I work with, the director of my group called me into his office to request my letter of resignation. There have been rumors of layoffs, etc approaching, so I guess that I'm trading my potential severance package for a resignation because word spread too soon behind my back. ?
  11. Ugh. I had to get a second chicken pox vaccine because my program requires two (when I got my first one as a child, the recommendation was still only one shot, then they updated it to the two shot series). Now I have this giant, itchy, painful welt, a sore arm, and absolutely no energy to do any of my huge to do list. I have a cross country move in like a month and I need to be sorting through things, planning, packing, etc. I don't have time to waste a valuable Saturday sleeping on my couch.
  12. I'm so sorry! That's really stressful. I hope things work out! This almost happened to me actually, but I came out on the lucky side of it... I had a really hard choice between two programs, and a couple of days after I made my decision, I got an email from the professor I would have worked with at the school I declined saying that he was moving to another university. It's really unfortunate that this type of news seems to come out AFTER we make our decisions and our plans. ?
  13. Someone in my family got a PhD in their mid-50s and is preparing to go up for tenure this year! My opinion is that it's never too late.
  14. I had some business travel proposed for early last spring, and I was trying to research which of my programs had interview weekends and to get a good guess as to when those interview weekends usually are. One of the programs I searched for had mentions of interviews on their GradCafe results page, so I checked the rest of my programs and clicked around a bit.
  15. Yikes. I just had another extremely awkward discussion with the director of my group. We all have these one-on-one meetings with him, where we're supposed to go through our career development goals, etc. Plans for future education comes up from time to time, and I did a terrible job talking around my decision to leave. This time I was so awkward that he has to know something is up. I really wanted to just tell him. I even started to say it and then in the middle of the sentence (literally right before I said the decision) the meeting got interrupted for a second. I took it as a sign that
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