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captivatingCA

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About captivatingCA

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    2020 Fall
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  1. I haven't decided just yet, though I've narrowed it down a good bit. I started with more obvious things like location and research fit, and used visits (in-person and virtual) to get a better sense of the departments. I also talked to people who know me well about my choices. I feel like most of it is based on personal preference not objective fact since all of these schools are great places to be. I don't want to clog up the results thread, but feel free to message me if you'd like to know more.
  2. Undergrad Institution: ~Top 100 (according to US News) Major(s): Mathematics Minor(s): Computer Science GPA: 3.85 Type of Student: Domestic Black Male GRE General Test: Q: 163(~85%) V: 164(~90%) W: 4.5 (~85%) Programs Applying: Statistics and Biostatistics PhDs Research Experience: I did research during my freshman and sophomore years, but it wasn’t relevant to stats. I worked with a math professor at my university on a bunch of random stuff (e.g. data visualization) over the past two years. This wasn’t research per-se, mostly just learning the material in a more intimate setting. I did summer research programs after my sophomore and junior years. Both were in well-respected departments. One was in a stats department, and the other was in biomedical informatics. I worked in a stat professor’s lab when I was on exchange. Letters of Recommendation: Mentors from my past two summers of research and a professor who I have taken a few courses from. Math/Statistics Grades: Calculus II, III (A, A), Intro to Linear Algebra (A), Proofs and Problem Solving I, II (A, A), Differential Equations (B), Intro to Analysis I (A), Numerical Analysis (A), Probability and Statistics I, II (A, A) CS Grades: Intro to Computer Science (A), Computer Science I (A), Computer Science II (A) I spent a semester on exchange at a top 3 university (according to US News). Here are the relevant courses: Modern Algebra I (A), Discrete Math (A), Essential Data Structures (A) Applying to Where:Harvard - Biostatistics PhD / Interview invite-1/7 / Accepted-2/11 NC State - Statistics PhD / Accepted-1/7Texas A&M - Statistics PhD / Accepted-1/19UW - Biostatistics PhD / Interview invite-1/24 / Accepted-3/4Duke - Statistics PhD / Accepted-1/31UW Madison - Statistics PhD / Accepted-1/31UW - Statistics PhD / Accepted-2/7UC Berkeley - Statistics PhD / Accepted-2/11U Michigan - Statistics PhD / Accepted(funded Master's)-2/14CMU - Statistics PhD / Accepted-2/21Cornell - Statistics PhD / Accepted-2/24UChicago - Statistics PhD / Waitlisted-2/26 Takeaways: I thought it would be good to share some of the things I've learned from this application process. I'll try to keep it short! First some straightforward, actionable advice. Apply for the NSF GRFP, it makes the rest of the application process so much easier. Study for the GRE; it's not hard but it's easy to get caught off-guard by some of the questions(at least it was for me). Turn in your applications early; it's a huge weight off your shoulders during a very stressful period. Trust your recommenders, advisors, and mentors. I applied to so many places because I was unsure of my chances at any of them. However, one of my recommenders told me at the beginning of the school year that I'd be successful in my applications. It's definitely important to hear multiple opinions, but if your advisor is experienced in the field, take their advice to heart. Don't compare yourself too much. Obviously the whole point of this thread is to compare yourself to others, just don't stress over it too much. GradCafe is great to see some of the commonalities between successful applicants. As long as you cover your bases though, missing one or two aspects that someone else had may not make as much of a difference as you think. Not to mention all of the factors you don't see on GradCafe. Don't give up if you didn't go to a brand-name school! I met lots of people on visits who didn't go to the Harvards and Stanfords of the world. There are other ways to stand out besides going to a big name school, so don't give up just because you go to Directional State U. Hopefully someone finds this useful!
  3. Past threads: 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 Here's the thread to submit your profile and results for stat and biostat programs for Fall 2020. You only have an hour after you post to edit, so it is best to post only when you have all of your results or have made a decision. Give as much detail as you feel comfortable with! Below is the template: Undergrad Institution: (School or type of school (such as Big state/Lib Arts/Ivy/Technical/Foreign (Country?)) Major(s): Minor(s): GPA: Type of Student: (Domestic/International (Country?), Male/Female?, Minority?) GRE General Test: Q: xxx (xx%) V: xxx (xx%) W: x.x (xx%) GRE Subject Test in Mathematics: M: xxx (xx%) TOEFL Score: (xx = Rxx/Lxx/Sxx/Wxx) (if applicable) Grad Institution: (school or type of school?) (if applicable) Concentration: GPA: Programs Applying: (Statistics/Operation Research/Biostatistics/Financial Math/etc.) Research Experience: (At your school or elsewhere? What field? How much time? Any publications or conference talks etc...) Awards/Honors/Recognitions: (Within your school or outside?) Pertinent Activities or Jobs: (Such as tutor, TA, etc...) Letters of Recommendation: (what kinds of professors? "well-known" in field? etc.) Math/Statistics Grades: (calculus sequence, mathematical statistics, probability, real analysis etc.) Any Miscellaneous Points that Might Help: (Such as connections, grad classes, etc...) Applying to Where: (Color use here is welcome) School - Program / Admitted/Rejected/Waitlisted/Pending on (date) / Accepted/Declined School - Program / Admitted/Rejected/Waitlisted/Pending on (date) / Accepted/Declined School - Program / Admitted/Rejected/Waitlisted/Pending on (date) / Accepted/Declined
  4. Since the application season is nearing the end for PhD applicants, are people interested in creating a results thread? I created last year's thread, and if there's enough interest I can go ahead and create this year's.
  5. Congrats to those who received the fellowship! I got an email this morning to check the portal and was notified that I did not receive it. My reviewers were pretty helpful, and one gave specific advice. I applied under Physical Sciences. I'm curious how applications are matched with reviewers in terms of fields. The NSF is specific enough for reviewers to know some of the intricacies of the applicant's field (publication rate, required experience, plausible research ideas, etc.). I'd imagine that there could be some issues with a mathematician reviewing a chemist's application for example. EDIT: I applied for the predoctoral fellowship btw.
  6. I met a few people at visit days who mentioned getting into Wharton.
  7. I agree with @bayessays. As an anecdote, I had a bunch of different clubs and activities on my CV, most of which weren't stats-related. Some people even brought them up at visits, in a positive way. I think other things like grades and letters of rec are of much higher significance, so extracurriculars probably won't push you one way or the other.
  8. I got an acceptance from CMU earlier today! I thought I was out of the running after the wave of acceptances a little while ago. So there still is some hope for people still waiting😊
  9. @ENE1 A little bit! I'll just message you though. I doubt most people want to hear about climbing haha.
  10. @ENE1 I climb too! I've been to a bunch of different gyms on the east coast, so those are my main frame of reference. I visited Triangle Rock (I can't remember which branch) and it was definitely one of the better gyms I've been to. I can't speak much to the rope climbing, but the bouldering was great! I'm pretty sure the gym was in a former big box store, so there was a LOT to climb and a lot of variety. They grade pretty hard too, much harder than most gyms I've been to. I only spent a few hours there, so I can't speak to how often they reset or the vibe of the community. The few people I did meet were really nice though.
  11. Are they requiring you to respond by Feb 28 for funding? Because that would be violating the April 15 Resolution which Indiana University is a part of. I'm not familiar with the department, but talking to students and alumni should give you a better idea of what it's like there.
  12. @likewater I got my acceptance yesterday. @MethodOfMothers According to their website, Chicago does rolling admissions. For the rest, I'm not sure if they admit in batches.
  13. I woke up this morning to an acceptance to UC Berkeley! I started this application season thinking I would get into two or three places, so it's really amazing to have so many great options. For those on waitlists, I'll start turning down some offers, but I think I'll visit before making my final decisions.
  14. I think the recommendations for textbooks have been good so far, but in case you want to supplement your studying with lectures, Bilkent University has online lectures for probability theory available on YouTube. The course is tailored for industrial engineering PhD students, so it covers all the prior knowledge you need. There's a lot of content (nearly 50 hour-long lectures), and the lecturer is great. https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL5B3KLQNAC5jT6yjV1199ji1zUy1YUp6P
  15. In my opinion the best way to ask these questions is to ask directly. 'What is the culture of the department?' is a valid question, though the answer may vary. You could also ask about specific attributes, such as the program being collaborative, competitive, friendly, or independent. In terms weeding out, it might be better to ask specifically how many students fail or leave early. I don't think many people would actively admit to weeding students out. I think you could ask both faculty and students these questions. It's great to get multiple answers from different people so that you get a better understanding of the program from different perspectives.
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