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  1. Upvote
    Anik_91 got a reaction from needanoffersobad in The COVID-19 effect on admissions & funding   
    The problem is that international students are only allowed to take up to 3-4 credits of online classes (the rest has to be in-person) to be in accordance with visa requirements. Hence, if the instruction is online they would think you don't even need to enter the US. I know this requirement was waived for Spring semester as everything happened quickly and in the middle of the semester, but I haven't heard of similar news regarding Fall semester.
  2. Like
    Anik_91 got a reaction from undotherightthing in Anyone currently in US and need to get new F-1 for Fall 2020?   
    I am an international currently in the US under J-1 visa which practically expired (but my status is valid based on DS-2019 form) and I will need to obtain an F-1 visa for my PhD program that starts in August. US Embassy and consulates in my home country are closed until further notice. As of now, my options are as follows:
    1. Wait until mid-May (beginning of June at the latest) to see if the situation improves and Embassies/consulates start operating again. If that happens, then I would fly back to get my new visa.
    2. If there are no improvements by June, I would consider applying for the change of status within the U.S. through U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), which is a long process. I also think it's not an option in my specific case, but I would need to do more research on this.
    3. Defer the program start date by a semester, leave the US when my current status expires in August and come back with an F-1 visa in December-January. I was told by the University International Office that if Fall semester is moved to online instruction and I am just about to start my program, then I would not be able to enter the US anyway. It's a different story for those who are in the middle of their programs because they should be allowed to enter the US to finish their degrees.
    Hoping to get more info regarding the Fall semester being online/in-person by June and decide then.
  3. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to CancerEpi2020Fall in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    I got accepted to Harvard PhD in Population Health Science (epidemiology) today after getting waitlisted for about 2 months! Full funding with stipend too! I guess waitlists do move and I'm so happy I didn't completely lose hope earlier.
  4. Like
    Anik_91 got a reaction from zmobiedick in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    Can't speak for all schools, but usually tuition waivers and other support is tied to FTE%. At UW, for example, they wouldn't give you all that support unless you are at 50% FTE, i.e. 20 hrs per week. Your department should be able to answer this question with certainty.
  5. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to WanderingNomad in Bioengineering/Biomedical Engineering Applications for 2020 Admission   
    I got an offer from MIT! 
    Currently feeling the strangest blend of shock/excitement/happiness right now, and I want to thank everyone on this forum who has provided their support and ridden along on this emotional rollercoaster with me for the past six months. 
  6. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to hopeful2020PhD in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    School rankings are pretty arbitrary. They are even less valuable for a PhD, which is highly specialized. The quality and prestige of the program will depend on what specific research niche you are in. The best school for studying HIV in the global south may well not be a great place to study nutritional assistance programs, for example. It really depends on what you want to study, and who is actually doing that work, and where. 
    I would think about the following, long before looking at rankings:
    funding offered faculty research match whether your advisor is someone you can work well with, and whether they will be a good advocate for you whether there are other potential collaborators affiliated with the program where their graduates end up after they complete the program whether you could be happy living there for 4-6 years If your options are tied after considering all of this, then sure, go to the conventionally more prestigious university.
  7. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to HSRPhD_2020 in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    I received an email from UNC's Admissions Office this morning, stating that their March 27th Admitted Student's Day will occur virtually. I followed up with the HPM department to ask if the department-specific programming that was also scheduled for that day will also be virtual, but I haven't received a reply yet. I am disappointed since I haven't visited the school yet and as you mentioned in another post was also hoping to do a gut check, but I definitely understand the need to take these precautions. 
  8. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to NotaBene in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    So... is anyone else worrying that COVID-19 is going to screw up visits? I'm super worried that the school I am due to visit Friday (which will help me finaloze my decision) is going to shut down by then. Anyone else in this boat?
  9. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to NotaBene in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    Hello, 30-something here. I've been asking the inverse of this question - out of fear I wouldn't have too much in common with a cohort of mostly 20-somethings. The resounding response I keep getting over and over is that people aren't even necessarily sure how old some people in their program are, because it doesn't matter too much - it seems that the shared experience of being in the department and going through the PhD is enough glue to help people make friends with their cohort! I have to say I'll be very happy to make friends with my cohort regardless of demographics, especially since I am heavily leaning toward going to a program that will require moving and being away from my long-term partner for most of the duration of the PhD (hoping to spend more time back home on winter/summer breaks if possible). And to me, part of the point of doing a PhD is to build that network, as well. Also, I wanted to say that my undergrad had some non-traditional students who were doing their bachelor's degree in their 30s, 40s, and 50s, and that some of them were my best friends in school even though I was barely a teenager/in my 20's. I often turned to them for perspective based on the experiences they'd had before school, and I really valued everything they had to share with me; they seemed to do the same with me, even though I had significantly less experience than them. Also, in my current career I work with a few people who are fresh out of undergrad, and I think they're terrific and genuinely enjoy having lunch with them/hanging out. I have had some great conversations with them and look forward to keeping in touch through the years! Hope this perspective helps.
  10. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to midwesternbelle in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    Hi There, I wanted to say that I DEFINITELY share your feelings about uncertainty.  For me, the decisions from programs were very different than expected.  And although accepted to four schools already (with two additional schools left to hear from), I was able to eliminate two choices (one due to funding & the other that was not a research match).  I am deciding between 2 schools and still waiting to hear from the other two.  One of the places I was accepted to is offering full funding/tuition, but a lower stipend and the other is offering a half tuition coverage at in-state price & a higher stipend.  It is really important to me to not acquire student debt (because I got a lot from my master's program).  Location is also a big piece for me.  Luckily, the two schools I'm deciding between, I really like the research advisors and areas that I would work.  
    Another topic I wanted to ask about (and I hope I don't offend anyone), is the average age of cohorts.  I am 23. I went to an in person interview for one place, that I was accepted to, and noticed that most the applicants were in their 30's (and some 40's) and very clearly in different social stages in life than I am.  I am a really social person, but ever since that interview, I have started to worry that I won't have anything in common with my cohort or may even seem inexperienced or juvenille because of the things I'll care about socially (which could be a bit of imposter syndrome & overgeneralization).  I am curious if this is typical for most people entering PhD programs or if that program was an anomaly?  Can anybody else share their thoughts/experiences- I didn't know it was customary to wait. Or is it?
    Also- my heart goes out to those of you choosing between programs in different locations as your partners, especially with a kiddo(s).  I hope y'all find a way to make things work (which I think you will) sending prayers and light!
  11. Upvote
    Anik_91 got a reaction from LisaNucar in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    Got accepted to UNC HPM and waiting to hear about the exact funding scheme (it's guaranteed for 2 years). Likely to accept, but the problem is that my wife got accepted to a different university. It's either we go together and one of is PhD-less, or we go to two different schools and spend years in a distance relationship... So if you have been in this situation or know someone with the same experience, would love to hear from you. Even if you haven't, still welcome your opinion. :) 
  12. Like
    Anik_91 got a reaction from LisaNucar in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    It must be so hard to make this decision with a kid. Good luck and whatever decision you make, I am sure it's going to be the right one - life just works out. At least, that's what I am thinking right now about our own decision. 
  13. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to hopeful2020PhD in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    My undergraduate advisor did his PhD in Michigan while his wife stayed in DC. It was tough for the first 2 years, and they traveled most weekends, but he mentioned how he didn't stay "in residence" to finish his dissertation so he could go live with her. Would that be a possibility for either of you (i.e., completing coursework at separate schools, then doing research remotely to finish your diss)?
  14. Like
    Anik_91 got a reaction from Desperado7261 in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    Another international student here. I totally second your concerns, especially if you are applying without any prior US education or research/work experience. One suggestion would be to apply for programs with global focus because it's much harder to get into Health Services programs which are more tailored to the US healthcare system. Also, my understanding is that at the end of the day it's all about fit (your previous experience/specific interests -> faculty projects). Look for faculty members who are doing similar (if not the exact) work you have experience in and tailor your application to that. This way those faculty members will be able to fund you. Also, I believe some schools like Northwestern provide fellowships for the first and sometimes second year regardless of your status. Try applying to those ones. Good luck to everyone!
  15. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to HealthPolicy2020 in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    I'll chime into this conversation about Hopkins. I just got back from visiting the HPM department, and I think the above thoughts resonate with my expectations and experience.
    My main concerns were funding, safety in Baltimore, academic quarter system, and feeling overwhelmed and lost in a large school of public health and not very clearly seeing how I and my research interests might plug in right away. Overall, I left with a positive impression and most of my concerns were addressed (to varying degrees of satisfaction).
    1. Funding. This irked me the most, as my stipend is 24k for 3 years guaranteed, which is cut in half during the 4th year. I brought this up with every professor I met with (maybe 7/8?) and each person seemed to have a very "don't worry about it" mentality. Talking to students, funding ultimately doesn't seem like a problem because of COL and research opportunities, but I had wish that professors had been more sympathetic and understanding that 12k is likely not a living wage and thus ridiculous. A lot of professors said that you would almost certainly augment that base stipend by doing research and get paid $20-$25/hr, but I still feel like that very much undervalues our time (maybe I have been too spoiled in the past...is this just phd life?). So overall, not thrilled with the funding package.
    2. Safety in Baltimore. I am from the area so knew what I was getting into. It's very much a block-by-block situation. But by and large I was really impressed with the safety in areas that Hopkins grad students tend to live (which inherently makes me slightly ashamed. Segregation and the division of class/race is a huge issue in this city, and gentrification is also very real). Canton, Fells, Mt. Vernon all seemed really great and safe. If I do go to Hopkins, I'd love to spend some time working in the community in some way and trying to improve life for others less fortunate...cause it's right there. every block.
    3. Academic quarter system. Nothing much I can do about it. The pros are that you can take a lot of different classes. The cons are they move fast and every 3 weekends you prepping for midterms or finals, which does not sound fun.
    4. feeling overwhelmed and lost. It's a 4 year program so don't have much time to navigate the school and the department before I feel that I should be diving in. But all the professors were really great and could immediately identify 1-2 handfuls of people whose research matched my own interests and outlined ways I could build a team, one that included my assigned adviser or otherwise. I feel a lot of support and they assured me it was natural to feel overwhelmed (even the professors shared the sentiment), but there are ways to navigate strategically.
    Finally, @Soychorizo's point about professors chasing grants. I was explicitly told that Hopkins operates under this mentality where they want junior faculty to chase grants and do their own thing and they want senior faculty to mentor PhD students. So that's kind of the model they pursued and I can definitely see how the hundreds of Masters students might feel neglected under such a system.
    The current students I met were all great and seemed happy about quality of life -- which is a huge plus for me!
    Woo!! Unable to keep it short and sweet, but here's my 2 cents, for what it's worth!
  16. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to leafypoet in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    I have to say that JHU's funding package is enormously disappointing, for a university that frequently refers to itself as the pre-eminent school of public health in the US (and globally). Being a graduate student is hard enough from an academic viewpoint, but having to be responsible for your living expenses during that time? 
  17. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to leafypoet in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    Dear friends, I have some just wonderful news for you. I got into the Harvard School of Public Health Master of Science (Epidemiology) program, and will be taking it in addition to continuing my post-doc fellowship here at the medical school. I didn't get into the doctorate program, but this will give me an opportunity to finish my projects here and to fulfill my dream of being a physician-scientist. Whether I re-apply for the PhD remains to be seen, but my application for the next cycle might be more competitive. I am indebted to my professors here for pulling strings so that the financial burden won't be too great. 
    Thank you all so much for your support. I really appreciate it, and hope I was able to support you also during this very stressful time. ❤️
  18. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to Soychorizo in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    Finally some good news!! I got into Stanford! They called to tell me and I have no idea what they said to be honest
  19. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to Ivin in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    I just go accepted into my top program (The JHU Mental Health Program). I am in extreme shock and I am so so happy. I never thought I would receive this opportunity😭😭
  20. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to BMEPHD2020 in Bioengineering/Biomedical Engineering Applications for 2020 Admission   
    Does anyone happen to know the recruitment/interview event dates for Northwestern BME?
  21. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to HealthPolicy2020 in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    Hi everyone! 
    So thrilled to hear about so many wonderful and well-deserved acceptances. And to those who have received less positive news, keep your heads up! I really believe that you'll land somewhere that will value you, and support you to make an impact in public health  And anywhere that doesn't think that doesn't deserve you! Truly. So far, I've been accepted to JHU Health Policy and Management, Vanderbilt Health Policy, and GW Health Policy (during my phone interview with GW, they said they would be recommending my application for admission and that I would receive an official letter in March). I'm waiting to hear back from Harvard Health Policy and was told to expect news at the end of February or early March. I haven't heard a thing from Wharton (health econ and management), so I think I'm out of the running.
    If you are considering JHU, Vanderbilt, or GW, please do reach out! I would love to connect. I can't speak to GW or Vanderbilt, but during my phone call with JHU, they told me that they expect the wait list to move and this year was exceptionally competitive (4 spots for 80+). Most of what I know I've included here, but feel free to DM me! I'm happy to discuss the interview process or in-person visits, or even bounce ideas/thoughts as we reach the decision portion of this process.
  22. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to LisaNucar in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    I always think it's a good idea. Personally, it helps my nerves to pause and take a moment to express my appreciation. I wrote thank you notes to my interviewers. I sent an e-mail for phone interview and sent card for in person interviews (I'm old school).
    In one instance, I have yet to hear anything further.  But all the others, I received a nice response and a message stating to please reach out with any questions.
    . While I have never been on an admissions committee, I have hired people and been on selection committee for practicum placement. I think it helps interviewers keep candidates fresh in their minds. Also, in situations where the candidate is probably applying several places, I feel it helps to reinforce interest.
  23. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to GlobalHealthPhD2020 in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    By *~magic~* somehow just accepted into the BSHS program at Brown! I think decisions are taking a while to get updated officially into the portal, so please don’t fret if you’re waiting 🥰 
  24. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to ydzhu in Bioengineering/Biomedical Engineering Applications for 2020 Admission   
    Same. Good news is that I'm done and decided. Yay!
  25. Like
    Anik_91 reacted to midwesternbelle in PhD Applicants: Fall 2020   
    I think it depends on the program, but the two schools I was accepted at- I heard back within a week after my interview.  Many other programs may have a much more extended timeline.  I think it internally depends on the overall purpose of the interview (to understand your research foci, to see if you are a good fit, or just to be sure that you are actually real and can speak about the topics you mentioned in your SOP).  I wish you the best of luck
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