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NEHiker17

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  1. I'm a first year graduate student and am taking a class with a mix of upper level undergraduates and grad students. The TA is also a first year grad student and is taking the class at the same time (as a regular student, for a grade...the only difference is that she's supposed to turn in her homework two days early). Last year, the professor also had a TA that was taking the class at the same time. Several person know she's the TA, and she openly talks about grading with us. However, the professor has never openly said who the TA is and just talks about "the graders" in class without saying who the other person is he's talking about. It's so awkward, and we can't go to the TA for advice or questions because it's a hard class that she's struggling with herself, and the professor apparently wants it to be a secret. This makes me think he realizes it doesn't really make sense. I'm friends with his previous TA, and she thinks the situation is completely inappropriate. I don't know how much experience the current TA has in the subject matter, but I know she struggles just as much as the other students and I don't know why she would be taking it if she already knew the material. Are TAs normally not allowed to take a course that they're currently TAing? I can't find policies on this at my school and wish I had asked at the beginning of the semester instead of deciding to speak up now.
  2. I was close to accepting an MS offer, but two days ago, my advisor told me she's leaving for another university. Her research interests closely match mine, she had two great projects I was excited to work on that would likely fund my second year and had a large influence on my decision to accept the offer, and I like her current students and the way they described how the research group is run. I had just visited the week before, and no one had mentioned the possibility of her leaving. Maybe they had no idea. I understand that she got a good offer, but I'm so disappointed. Now I have no idea who my advisor will be (although she's trying to help me figure it out, and the department really wants me to attend, which might help), where my second year of funding will come from since I don't know who my advisor will be, where my work space will be, etc. And I was awarded a first-year assistantship that I'd need to accept by April 15th. It just doesn't seem like enough time to get things figured out.😵 Has this happened to others?
  3. I'm very likely heading there in the fall, but for environmental sciences & engineering. I haven't made my final decision.
  4. I am so sick of people not responding to emails! I finally get an email from a professor who does the exact research I want to do after months of no response. Oh, he'd be happy to chat with me! I email him back right away, and two weeks later, no response. April 15th is coming up fast, man! I ask a simple question at another university - will the second round of funding offers be made after April 15th? Seems like a simple question to answer, but no response after a week. And then there's the graduate coordinator who does eventually respond, but doesn't bother to answer any of the questions in my email. Maybe that's the famous MN indirectness? I have no idea.
  5. I wouldn't attempt this. I had a 90 minute commute to work for three months and ended up quitting. I had to get up really early, it ate up too much time, I felt restless from sitting in the car so much, and I got so tired of filling up my tank every other day. I get the desire to be near your SO, but I think it's setting yourself up poorly for school.
  6. AHHH #$)#U%U{$#@)%#%{#)% !!!!!!!!!!!
  7. I was recently admitted to an MS program at a very good public university, and my experience has been frustrating. Has anyone else had similar experiences? I was invited to a visit weekend before I was admitted, with no information about what my admissions status was at that time. The visit weekend was described as a chance to meet with advisors who are interested in applicants, but no meetings were set up for me. I didn't find this out until after I paid for a plane ticket. My roommate for the weekend had the same experience - confusion about her admissions status and no meetings arranged. Neither of us had a clue why we were even invited. I wasn't told until the week before the visit that I would have a roommate for two nights in a hotel and the third night would be with a grad student host. I'm an introvert and need time alone to decompress, and I would have appreciated being told when the invitation was sent out. The weekend involved tours of several labs that were interesting, but specific to certain research interests. Not many of them matched mine. I guess they were just trying to make the scheduling less complicated, but I thought much of it was a waste of time for me. They ended up scheduling a couple of meetings for me. I'm sure this was only because before I left for the trip, I asked why I had no meetings with professors and expressed concern. But, I didn't know about the meetings until the first day of the visit when I arrived on campus. At that point, I had no time to prepare. One of the meetings was via phone with a professor, during the campus visit. I still don't know if he was on campus and couldn't be bothered to take the bus 15 minutes to meet with me in person. I could have just done a phone call at home. My roommate never did have any meetings, so I feel even worse for her. They nominated me for a fellowship that I clearly didn't qualify for under the eligibility requirements. When I pointed this out, they said they'd find out the results soon. I even mentioned this to one of my potential advisors. Despite pointing out the problem to two people, they continued to await the results and act like I might get the fellowship instead of finding other funding sources for me. This was the most baffling and frustrating part of the process. I have no idea why they didn't admit the mistake, withdraw my nomination, and find another funding source. The program sounds great, I like the location, and I've talked to a very nice, smart, and grounded potential advisor that I think I'd work well with (and doesn't have funding). But this process has been beyond annoying.
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