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About JSmoove

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    Microbiology, Genetics
  1. Not necessarily. I just got an email today from a school today inviting me for an interview. It was the first time that I had heard from them since I applied. I had to decline because I had already accepted an offer months ago. Most likely I was on some sort of hidden wait list. However, this isn't likely so I wouldn't hold too much hope for it. It is probably a rejection. Still, just email the department and ask about the status of your application. At least then you will know for sure.
  2. To further clarify, although wanting to be in a new environment is completely understandable, if these are MA programs, I would weigh the cost more than the location in any decision because those programs are usually 1-2 years. For a PhD program, where you're usually there for about 5-6 years, I think being happy in the place you're at is more important. If MA, just tough it out for that short amount of time, and then go somewhere more interesting afterward for your next stage of life.
  3. What? I'm very confused by this advice. Putting aside the focus on the boyfriend aspect of it when it doesn't seem like the original post said that it was going to be a huge deterrent to choosing the more expensive program (only that it was one positive of the first program in addition to it being cheaper and closer to home), I think it's a very bad idea to ever go into a more expensive PhD program and take out loans. There are way too many fully funded PhD programs out there that provide tuition remission and a stipend for that to ever be a good idea. If these are PhD programs and both would
  4. Most of that is research that you will probably have to do yourself online or ask the program directly. You can't really expect people on here to just know that kind of info off-hand or to do the work for you in terms of figuring it out. You can easily look up rankings online yourself, and you can ask the program about on-campus job availability and about where their graduates end up going afterward. Once you have that info, and other positives and negatives you can think of in terms of funding, location, etc., people would be better able to help you weigh the pros and cons and help with a dec
  5. I feel like you're getting some bad advice in this thread. It really depends on whether or not you'd be interested in the research in the lab, even though it's not exactly what you want to do. If you'd still be interested, then go for it. But if not, then I'd say wait another year and re-apply. Taking an offer to do work you're not interested in solely out of fear that you won't get into another program is shortsighted to me. Plenty of people reapply for PhDs and things work out fine for them. Of course, it will definitely be a risk, but if you're planning to do research during the gap year th
  6. You should decline #1 at least. You don't seem excited at all about the offer, and it doesn't make financial sense since they don't provide a stipend. Just holding onto the offer just to have it until it expires is rude.
  7. Go with UCLA. You clearly like it better. The fact that your significant other is close by is a plus. Forcing your to warm up to Berkeley just for the sake of a school ranking and the area is just silly when you already have a school that you got that special gut feeling about and that has a ton of labs that you could see yourself being interested in. Rankings are not the end all, be all. As long as you find a good PI with connections and that does good research and with whom you can publish, you will be fine. Furthermore, going to grad school in SoCal does not mean you'd have to stay there.
  8. Do NOT email them hourly. That's way too much and out of line. If you sent the email to two different people, then they got your response. They probably just haven't had time to respond yet as this is a busy time for admissions. At least wait until Friday (a week after your initial email) to follow up with them.
  9. I don't think it's a huge deal if you stay. It is somewhat discouraged, but I know several people that chose to go to grad school at their undergraduate institution. At the end of the day, if you are doing good research with a well-known PI, you will be fine. Also, I'm not sure if people in physics do postdocs, but if you do one at another institution after grad school, then that solves that problem. If UCF ends up being your top choice, don't miss out for the sake of "academic inbreeding" - it's just a recommendation, not a hard and fast rule.
  10. I'm not within chemistry, but some schools will give you extra money for getting an outside fellowship in order to incentivize students to partially fund themselves with their own fellowships. So for example, if they were willing to give you a 40,000 stipend but you get a 30,000 fellowship, a school might instead give you an additional 15,000. In total, you would get 45,000 a year - 5,000 more than you would have - but the school would be spending 25,000 less on you. You should ask if maybe something like this is an option. I doubt you'd be able to still hold onto the entire stipend from the s
  11. It sounds like a pretty good offer to me. You should go. Don't focus too much on a program's national ranking. Also keep in mind that you can always do a postdoc in gene regulation and genetics. Your research project just needs to be interesting to you, it doesnt need to be exactly what you want to do in the future. BUT, if you're really not feeling the program in terms of fit (whether that's because of research, location, faculty, whatever), then don't just accept because PhD programs are difficult to get into. PhD programs are a difficult, long haul, and a lot of people end up quitting, so i
  12. While it might be nice for people on the wait list, don't decline an offer if you're not ready to do so yet just because it's the "polite" thing to do. Now if you're absolutely certain that you wouldn't attend a school, then you should absolutely let them know as soon as possible. But don't feel any pressure to commit yet: grad school is a huge decision and you need to be able to live with your choice. Don't let one program coordinator sour you on the entire program. You still don't have to decide until April 15th, so just continue as you were before.
  13. I disagree with most of the posters here. I think Zyzz did come here asking for help with handling the situation, and some posters here have made assumptions that he/she is planning to go off half-cocked, leading to an unnecessarily snide back-and-forth. Zyzz- 1. I think it's good that you have documented all of these interactions. At the very least, you have proof of any misconduct by the program if it actually occurred. 2. Clearly, something was going on in that class. As a former engineer, I know what it is like to take classes that either have a right or wrong answer, and I've never
  14. I interviewed Feb 13-14. Yeah, the fact that it's in NYC was one of the factors in my decision. Also the fact that the stipend is huge, but the cost of living would be lower for us because the housing is subsidized (only about $500-600/month). I'll definitely email you and let you know what I think about it after I go to the revisit weekend.
  15. Also, remember that you can always do epigenetics for your postdoc, if you can't find a lab with epigenetics for grad school. The most important thing about choosing a school and then a thesis lab is NOT the project. It is the mentor and the environment of the lab. As long as your project is interesting enough to you and you learn a lot, you will be in good position for the future. Because you can have a project that exactly fits your interests, but if you hate your mentor or your lab, it will be a miserable couple of years.
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