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Rebound or wait a year (Biochemistry)?

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I want to know what would you advise: either go to Indiana University or wait over a year and re-apply (while working in research)? I was invited to Uchicago for their Cell and Molecular Biology PhD program interview weekend (this was my first interview), but unfortunately got rejected. It was hard cause I fell in love with the university during the interview. I realized, however, some mistakes I made in preparation for this interview, which I believe could have changed this decision. Basically I prepared in a wrong way. Most of the other schools I applied to rejected me (half of them never received my unofficial transcripts cause they were encrypted and never got a notice :/). My last alternative (or "rebound school") out of the 8 schools I applied was Indiana University. They invited me to an interview, and I aced it (this time I prepared the proper way). The faculty is very nice, the research is super interesting, but the environment is very unappealing to me. I am definitely not a rural person, and this shocked me in a very harsh way. I don't mind going through it cause I am not a person that goes out a lot, but it is hard to see myself living there. I am torn because the faculty really seemed interested in what I got to say and they have very top-notch facilities (some things have to be out-sourced but this is a minimum). I got an unofficial acceptance. Another reason why I don't know if I should go, however, is because I felt like I worked really hard to try to get to at least a bit more recognized university (or maybe that's what I have made myself think). Either way, I got a 3.76 GPA, a biochem major, Phi Beta Kappa, 2 years of research, but no publications. I got a job offer at this nice research lab, with a nice pay, where I could stay til next year when interviews restart. I already talked to them about my intentions.I will get another lor and maybe even a publication (AT LAST!). So I don't know if I should just go to IU or wait a year and do research before I can reapply to bunch of universities I am really interested in (they don't have to be top tier unis , although I'll try)? I will try to apply to UChicago, but my main plan is to do a better research on the universities before I apply to them (and do a better job when submitting my grades). Please help!.

 

Sorry for the long post! But I think the details might be important. This is my first post here at the grad cafe.

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I am sorry for what you are going through.  I am not sure anyone can advise you on this, but here is my 2c.  Working is a plan B and the game changes every year,  different students and different school needs can change your chances.  I only applied to schools I will be OK with going to, that way I only needed one.  You have your one, go get your Phd.

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1 hour ago, AllAboutThatChem said:

I am sorry for what you are going through.  I am not sure anyone can advise you on this, but here is my 2c.  Working is a plan B and the game changes every year,  different students and different school needs can change your chances.  I only applied to schools I will be OK with going to, that way I only needed one.  You have your one, go get your Phd.

Thanks for the help. It is a difficult decision to make for sure. I am afraid of things becoming harder and not having any place to go if I reapply. I think getting more experience is helpful and and improving my applications with more time might help, but the question would be: how much more will it? I really appreciate the response. I will take it into consideration. I am also waiting for their specific offer. If its good enough, that could definitely tilt my decision significantly, but either way, I will be assessing this decision for a bit. I shouldn't take this lightly.

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