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About groverj3

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  • Application Season
    2015 Fall
  • Program
    Molecular Biology
  1. I thought I would post my stuff. It might help future students make decisions and whatnot. My situation is kind of unique. I graduated from undergrad in 2011, worked in biotech for about 2 years, applied to PhD programs, didn't get in, ended up doing a masters instead, re-applied to PhD programs, had much better results this time around. Undergrad Institution: Michigan State Major(s): Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, Chemistry GPA in Major: Never calculated, but probably not much higher than 3.1 Overall GPA: 3.23 Type of Student: domestic, male Grad Institution: University of Ariz
  2. My advice is not to take any of these subject tests unless you're required to. I don't know of too many programs that require it, it's expensive, and pretty difficult. I took it a while back when I was trying to decide what I was doing with my life and did abysmally. Since then I've gone to a masters program and taken the same coursework in biochem/molecular bio and not only did better than I did in the subjects while in undergrad, but better than many of the PhD students. The test is difficult to study for because there's almost no way to know what is going to be on it. Then again, th
  3. This is obviously waaaay late, but I did my undergrad at MSU and likely know most of the professors in the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology department. I also worked in a lab there during undergrad. If you want a sort of inside opinion on professors shoot me a message. I loved the campus and city while I was there. Not sure how grad student life is there, but I can confirm that it's a great choice if you want to do plant biochemistry/molecular biology stuff! There are a lot of good professors there working in that area.
  4. Yeah, I guess I didn't have much to worry about. Told the boss today, she was cool with me sticking around until July 19th like I planned.
  5. Yeah, people with M.S.s usually do ok in industry. If you're fine with moving out of the lab eventually and into something management-related you might even end up managing several people with PhDs. I've seen it happen many times.
  6. You all probably know this already, but the U.S. system has a few differences that weren't already mentioned. 1. In most fields, an MS is not necessary for admission to a PhD program. 2. Schools often award MS degrees to people unable to finish their PhD, but this is not necessarily always the case and they are not obligated to. 3. Many schools simply do not offer MS degrees in certain fields (many sciences) due to the above reasons. 4. It's pretty rare for someone to finish a PhD in 4 years, I'd say the average is more like 5-7 years. Subject dependent, of course. 5. The government si
  7. Well, from the simple perspective that there are more and better paying jobs outside academia... I probably wouldn't stay. In lots of scientific fields it isn't uncommon for people to do post-doc after post-doc for ~10 years before getting a real job in academia. If they're unsuccessful they end up in industry anyway. Not the way it works in every field, but there are just too few positions in academia to support the demand.
  8. Depending on how badly you want to go to this particular program, is it possible it may be easier to be funded in future years? If you'd be willing to take out student loans to cover the first year, and then could get funding after that it may be worth doing.
  9. Good posts, everyone. I don't really feel guilty about leaving, because the company isn't giving me much of a reason to stick around. Although, I don't want someone else to be stuck with my extremely monotonous and never-ending duties without warning. Plus, I'd be perfectly willing to help train a replacement (if they even decide to hire one). Part of the issue with waiting much longer is that I've been told to work on some stuff that I won't be around to finish. Also, they've asked me to attend training sessions for some other things which will eat up a large amount of time. All of which
  10. Hello everyone, I've been trying to figure out when I should inform my employer of my plans to leave for school. I currently work at a large CRO in a molecular biology lab, the department itself is pretty small. My manager also wrote me several letters of recommendation during the application process. I was finally accepted into a professional science masters program, after not getting into PhD programs. Even though I will not be funded I still feel like doing the masters will be a good move. The second year of the program is a paid internship rather than the typical lab work for a degree
  11. I haven't done this. However, if your technical skills in the lab are good you can probably get a job just fine. You might actually have more options than someone with a PhD. You'll definitely have more options and better advancement than someone with a B.S. Most industry jobs say something along the lines of "MS with x years experience" "PhD with y years experience." You're going to have to look hard, but that's because the science job market sucks right now for everyone. You just need to spin your leaving early in a positive way. "I was spending most of my time teaching and working on th
  12. groverj3

    East Lansing, MI

    This isn't something I've ever investigated. However, one thing to be aware of with mobile home communities (aka, Trailer Parks) is that they are mostly a low-income housing option. While this isn't bad in and of itself, this does mean that many of the problems affecting low-income/unemployed people will be more prevalent. Things such as property crime/vandalism, drugs, etc... Now, just like anything else there are better communities which probably don't have these problems. It is possible you could make a small profit, but the value of mobile homes usually goes down over time. It could be a g
  13. groverj3

    East Lansing, MI

    Hello all, I'm about 2 years removed from my time in EL, but I did all 4 years of my undergrad there and can say a few things about the city. Probably nothing ground-breaking, but the perspective of a Spartan may be helpful. Transportation: CATA runs the MSU buses, and connects to a station in the middle of campus. The MSU bus lines are very convenient, and you will become accustomed to taking them. The campus is literally the largest by sheer physical size in the US. Parking can be an issue, passes are expensive, and spots on the interior of campus are hard to come by. Plenty of parki
  14. Apparently I was being totally irrational. It's a good feeling to finally have a destination. Moving to the desert in the middle of the summer sounds rough! However, it's nice to get admitted somewhere finally!
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