Jump to content
Sigaba

Applications 2019

Recommended Posts

1 minute ago, The Last Byzantine said:

Does anyone know if Brown has only sent out acceptances via personal email with POI's so far? In other words, if we haven't received one of those emails, is there still hope that our POI just doesn't send out personal e-mails and is content with just letting official e-mails announce results, or can we assume that we won't be getting an acceptance?

Brown sent out officials. Sorry.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looks like I spoke too soon. Just got an email from my POI at William and Mary--I've been accepted to the terminal MA and waitlisted for PhD. Not the news I had hoped for but definitely heartening considering my rejection from Johns Hopkins. A formal email should follow in a few days according to my POI so hopefully the MA will be somewhat funded (though I'm definitely not counting on it). 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, villageelliot said:

Looks like I spoke too soon. Just got an email from my POI at William and Mary--I've been accepted to the terminal MA and waitlisted for PhD. Not the news I had hoped for but definitely heartening considering my rejection from Johns Hopkins. A formal email should follow in a few days according to my POI so hopefully the MA will be somewhat funded (though I'm definitely not counting on it). 

As you already hinted at, this could be a blessing in disguise if you don't already have a master's.

Edited by fartsmeller

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi!

I have been lurking all season and wanted to congratulate all those who have received acceptances so far. You're on your way to achieving your dreams! To those still waiting, I wish you the best of luck!

I'm early on in my search process myself for (hopefully) the 2020 application season, and I wanted to poll some of you more experienced applicants and grad students about the University of Washington. I'm interested in U.S. maritime labor, but also wanted to explore gender and family life in working-class communities. From their website, UW seems to have faculty and resources that may aid my research. Do any of you have thoughts about the program that you might be able to share? I have seen lots of talk about other programs. I thought if I shared, maybe other lurkers might come out of the shadows with their knowledge of Washington.

Thanks!

Edited by Tantive5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, OHSP said:

Penn is rare in that it uses its interviews as a vetting process. They don't admit anyone without an interview. 

Ah okay, cool cool. No doubt no doubt. Nice.

@daradara I'm not sure if that's true -- like I know that Duke sent out their acceptances already but since I've not got an official rejection, I'm still holding on to (false) hope. Even if good news are realistically never going to come by this point.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, elx said:

Ah okay, cool cool. No doubt no doubt. Nice.

@daradara I'm not sure if that's true -- like I know that Duke sent out their acceptances already but since I've not got an official rejection, I'm still holding on to (false) hope. Even if good news are realistically never going to come by this point.

You never know. As I understand it, the whole point of them sending out acceptances before rejections is to give them the ability to send out a second round of acceptances if enough people turn down their offer. You could very well be offered a spot on the waitlist!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, fartsmeller said:

As you already hinted at, this could be a blessing in disguise if you don't already have a master's.

Thanks for the encouragement! I'm definitely open to considering the MA, especially if I can get some degree of funding or financial aid. For now though, I'm hoping a spot opens up for me on their waitlist for the PhD program.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, villageelliot said:

Looks like I spoke too soon. Just got an email from my POI at William and Mary--I've been accepted to the terminal MA and waitlisted for PhD. Not the news I had hoped for but definitely heartening considering my rejection from Johns Hopkins. A formal email should follow in a few days according to my POI so hopefully the MA will be somewhat funded (though I'm definitely not counting on it). 

I'm in the same boat. I'm wondering about funding / placement - especially to programs other than W&M's own PhD program.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@villageelliot, I know it's not exactly the news you wanted, but it's still positive news, congrats! Keeping my fingers crossed for you.

@elx, it's certainly not unreasonable to be holding on to hope for a spot on the waitlist! As @villageelliot said, it's definitely a possibility.

I don't think I will be fully relaxed until everyone here hears back, I feel so invested in everyone's journey!

Edited by Karou

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Still hoping for everybody to hear good news soon! I'm sure this week and the next one will be it for a lot of schools.

Today I have a phone call with a professor from Northwestern. I was just wondering, from people who have done this already, what will it be like? I have a couple questions to ask, but although they offered me a really good financial package, it'll take a lot to convince me from Harvard. But, I haven't even received Harvard's funding offer. Any particular questions I should ask? How should I go about navigating the other offers I received? Is it just rude to blatantly say sorry but not interested? Or even to ask for more money?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
27 minutes ago, urbanhistorynerd said:

Is it just rude to blatantly say sorry but not interested? Or even to ask for more money?

Yes, it's rude to say sorry but not interested after they've spent time thinking about you and your work. It's also not a great move to ask for more money (which your POI might look into, spend time on) if you pretty much know that at the end of the day you're going to choose Harvard. Don't be That Harvard Person, people remember it!

Instead think about this as a chance to learn more about another program, where you'll have peers in your field etc, and to network with this faculty member--you never know what your situation will be in a few years, and don't give them a reason to remember you (when you're on the job market, etc) as the grad student who ruled out their offer without even hearing about the program. Be honest, say you have other offers, if they ask you where you can even mention Harvard, but also use the time to genuinely ask about their program because who knows what you'll learn. And then if you really know that you're not going to be accepting their offer, the moment you get your official letter from Harvard let them know and put someone on the waitlist out of their agony.

**edited to add, for the benefit of everyone, that when you're weighing offers it pays to be open-minded. I did not expect to be at the school I'm at, I applied at the last moment and it was my least "prestigious" blah blah blah offer, but I think if I had chosen one of the more prestigious schools (and I would mostly have been picking them for "going to an ivy" type reasons, which are not good reasons) I'd probably be living to regret it, because none of those schools were as interdisciplinary as my work basically needs to be. 

Edited by OHSP

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 minutes ago, urbanhistorynerd said:

Still hoping for everybody to hear good news soon! I'm sure this week and the next one will be it for a lot of schools.

Today I have a phone call with a professor from Northwestern. I was just wondering, from people who have done this already, what will it be like? I have a couple questions to ask, but although they offered me a really good financial package, it'll take a lot to convince me from Harvard. But, I haven't even received Harvard's funding offer. Any particular questions I should ask? How should I go about navigating the other offers I received? Is it just rude to blatantly say sorry but not interested? Or even to ask for more money?

Do not, under any circumstances, be rude. Scholars have a very long memory. A professor here wrote an unflattering review of one of Londa Schiebinger's books. 10 years after, my professor organized a lunch with her and Donna Harraway. Schiebinger refused to be at the same table as my professor, who herself is far from obscure.

You have two very good offers already. I would recommend visiting both with the intention of accepting. Meet with the faculty and the graduate students. See how well you get along with them. You may find that you get along far better with a NW advisor and graduate students than Harvard's graduate students. Indeed, some of the least impressive graduate students I've ever met were in an otherwise excellent program. You might find that the Harvard advisor and you don't have the same personality type. 

These are all highly important considerations you need to take into account. You cannot get them from a distance.

If you are legitimately interested in going to NW, you should send an email explaining the situation and ask if they're willing to match Harvard. I wouldn't do this unless you actually are interested, because it's somewhat tacky otherwise.

Edited by psstein

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good grief @urbanhistorynerd, I wouldn't cross off all other schools you have been accepted to just because you got into Harvard.  This period is a "courting" period which professors (and graduate students) try to woo you into accepting the offer. You'll never have this kind of attention again so please, please savour every moment and hold off making final decisions until after campus visits.

I second @psstein. Campus visits are SO, SO, SO important. I've seen many decisions on this board over the years which campus visits unsettled people's pre-campus visit decisions like @ashiepoo72. (Although I was very set on going to OSU, when I visit Wisconsin, I loved Madison more than I expected and almost decided to go there instead.) You'll also get a much better feel for the city as a graduate student, not a tourist. Also, campus visits will allow you to meet other potential members of your cohort so  you have a good sense of who you will be taking seminars and studying for the cmps with until you all become ABDs.

In terms of your phone call, I would not go push for increase in the funding package until you have full information from Harvard.  You need a leverage in hand.  But you can ask about additional funding opportunities for research, language study, digital humanities, whatever.  Ask how US history PhD students do with external grants. Also, you'll have Kevin Boyle who is simply outstanding as a teacher and as a writer of 20th c. US History. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, psstein said:

Do not, under any circumstances, be rude. Scholars have a very long memory. A professor here wrote an unflattering review of one of Londa Schiebinger's books. 10 years after, my professor organized a lunch with her and Donna Harraway. Schiebinger refused to be at the same table as my professor, who herself is far from obscure.

You have two very good offers already. I would recommend visiting both with the intention of accepting. Meet with the faculty and the graduate students. See how well you get along with them. You may find that you get along far better with a NW advisor and graduate students than Harvard's graduate students. Indeed, some of the least impressive graduate students I've ever met were in an otherwise excellent program. You might find that the Harvard advisor and you don't have the same personality type. 

These are all highly important considerations you need to take into account. You cannot get them from a distance.

If you are legitimately interested in going to NW, you should send an email explaining the situation and ask if they're willing to match Harvard. I wouldn't do this unless you actually are interested, because it's somewhat tacky otherwise.

 

16 minutes ago, OHSP said:

Yes, it's rude to say sorry but not interested after they've spent time thinking about you and your work. It's also not a great move to ask for more money (which your POI might look into, spend time on) if you pretty much know that at the end of the day you're going to choose Harvard. Don't be That Harvard Person, people remember it! Instead think about this as a chance to learn more about another program, where you'll have peers in your field etc, and to network with this faculty member--you never know what your situation will be in a few years, and don't give them a reason to remember you (when you're on the job market, etc) as the grad student who ruled out their offer without even hearing about the program. Be honest, say you have other offers, if they ask you where you can even mention Harvard, but also use the time to genuinely ask about their program because who knows what you'll learn. And then if you really know that you're not going to be accepting their offer, the moment you get your official letter from Harvard let them know and put someone on the waitlist out of their agony. **edited to add, for the benefit of everyone, that when you're weighing offers it pays to be open-minded. I did not expect to be at the school I'm at, I applied at the last moment and it was my least "prestigious" blah blah blah offer, but I think if I had chosen one of the more prestigious schools (and I would mostly have been picking them for "going to an ivy" type reasons, which are not good reasons) I'd probably be living to regret it, because none of those schools were as interdisciplinary as my work basically needs to be. 

Great advice from both of you - thank you! I wrote that comment in hurry while at work - let me say I told my POI there that I would not make any choices until I visit NW and speak with him. This is also a professor who's work very much influenced my own, I feel very lucky to actually be able to speak to him over the phone. And although I won't be ruling out any program until I can ask serious questions and contemplate, Harvard fits nearly perfectly with my proposed research. Unfortunately, the prof at NW would be the only one remotely in my field of research, and even then, he still in a different thematic theme. 

Regardless, I'm still very interested in the university but I just want to make it clear to him that, at this point, I'm considering the other school over NW. But you're definitely right. I still need to really meet everybody at Harvard to get a feel if this is a place where I want to spend the next 5-7 years in. I was just wondering how other people in my boots handled telling other schools they will be attending a different program.

And I'm also taking placement after graduation into considerable account. Even if I find Northwestern to be more opening and welcoming than Harvard, is passing up Harvard's placement rate really worth it? Nearly everybody around here says the same thing: it's about finding a job afterwards. If NW gives more individual attention (which it seems like it does, so far) than Harvard, would that be worth it if getting a tenure-track is much more difficult afterwards? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, TMP said:

Good grief @urbanhistorynerd, I wouldn't cross off all other schools you have been accepted to just because you got into Harvard.  This period is a "courting" period which professors (and graduate students) try to woo you into accepting the offer. You'll never have this kind of attention again so please, please savour every moment and hold off making final decisions until after campus visits.

I second @psstein. Campus visits are SO, SO, SO important. I've seen many decisions on this board over the years which campus visits unsettled people's pre-campus visit decisions like @ashiepoo72. (Although I was very set on going to OSU, when I visit Wisconsin, I loved Madison more than I expected and almost decided to go there instead.) You'll also get a much better feel for the city as a graduate student, not a tourist. Also, campus visits will allow you to meet other potential members of your cohort so  you have a good sense of who you will be taking seminars and studying for the cmps with until you all become ABDs.

In terms of your phone call, I would not go push for increase in the funding package until you have full information from Harvard.  You need a leverage in hand.  But you can ask about additional funding opportunities for research, language study, digital humanities, whatever.  Ask how US history PhD students do with external grants. Also, you'll have Kevin Boyle who is simply outstanding as a teacher and as a writer of 20th c. US History. 

Oh I'm totally not crossing off other schools - it isn't because Harvard is well, Harvard, it is that all three of my POI there match exactly what I want to research, and that one of them has hand a very big hands on role in shaping my application since I first sent an email of interest. I totally agree though, and I definitely plan to attend their scheduled campus visit. I just want to make my current feeling clear enough that I'm not misleading them or wasting time that a waitlisted student could have.

Good advice on the phone call, I'll take that into mind. And yeah, Kevin Boyle is amazing. 

Let me also just say that I'm feeling very muddled because I did NOT expect myself to be in this situation. Sorry if it seemed like I was dishing out blatantly erroneous tactics, I'm just trying to get a hang of I can manage through all this without upsetting people. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 minutes ago, urbanhistorynerd said:

I was just wondering how other people in my boots handled telling other schools they will be attending a different program.

And I'm also taking placement after graduation into considerable account. Even if I find Northwestern to be more opening and welcoming than Harvard, is passing up Harvard's placement rate really worth it? Nearly everybody around here says the same thing: it's about finding a job afterwards. If NW gives more individual attention (which it seems like it does, so far) than Harvard, would that be worth it if getting a tenure-track is much more difficult afterwards? 

Telling POIs that I wasn't going to attend, despite loving pretty much all of them, was actually the hardest and worst part of the whole application process for me. It's difficult! 

Re placement I'm going to PM you--placement rates are obviously very important. That said... I'd encourage people to tweak the way they're thinking about placement statistics--as in, instead of just looking at the placement rates for your school or even for your field, think about how well the school is going to be able to set you (in particular) up for placement in the kinds of jobs you think you might want after the PhD. Again for me the ivy school had great placement rates, but the students getting jobs were all doing relatively traditional kinds of history and I couldn't really see evidence that their non-traditional, interdisciplinary students were getting jobs in the kinds of departments I'd ultimately want to apply to--at the school I'm now attending, placement into Am studies and interdisciplinary departments is much better (especially if you work across departments once you get here), and so that made more sense for me. In other words, the details are important. 

Edited by OHSP

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, OHSP said:

Telling POIs that I wasn't going to attend, despite loving pretty much all of them, was actually the hardest and worst part of the whole application process for me. It's difficult! 

Re placement I'm going to PM you--placement rates are obviously very important. That said... I'd encourage people to tweak the way they're thinking about placement statistics--as in, instead of just looking at the placement rates for your school or even for your field, think about how well the school is going to be able to set you (in particular) up for placement in the kinds of jobs you think you might want after the PhD. Again for me the ivy school had great placement rates, but the students getting jobs were all doing relatively traditionally kinds of history and I couldn't really see evidence that their non-traditional, interdisciplinary students were getting jobs in the kinds of departments I'd ultimately want to apply to--at the school I'm now attending, placement into Am studies and interdisciplinary departments is much better (especially if you work across departments once you get here), and so that made more sense for me. In other words, the details are important. 

Very true! Getting caught up with the mystique and "prestige" of Ivy Leagues is very easy, and it is even easier to forget about the fine details that makeup the grad experience. I'll appreciate that PM - thank you!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anyone know what's up with NYU? I find it curious that there's a few waitlist results being posted despite there being no wave of acceptances yet. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, OHSP said:

Telling POIs that I wasn't going to attend, despite loving pretty much all of them, was actually the hardest and worst part of the whole application process for me. It's difficult! 

Re placement I'm going to PM you--placement rates are obviously very important. That said... I'd encourage people to tweak the way they're thinking about placement statistics--as in, instead of just looking at the placement rates for your school or even for your field, think about how well the school is going to be able to set you (in particular) up for placement in the kinds of jobs you think you might want after the PhD. Again for me the ivy school had great placement rates, but the students getting jobs were all doing relatively traditional kinds of history and I couldn't really see evidence that their non-traditional, interdisciplinary students were getting jobs in the kinds of departments I'd ultimately want to apply to--at the school I'm now attending, placement into Am studies and interdisciplinary departments is much better (especially if you work across departments once you get here), and so that made more sense for me. In other words, the details are important. 

Agreed. One potential question to ask: is this program going to train me to be the historian I want to be? Does it offer the language classes, training, funding, and intellectual environment I think I need? And, on my visiting weekend, did I see evidence of these important aspects of the program? In my own field, HYP&S are generally not the programs that are going to produce strong historians (with important exceptions that admitted students have to keep in mind!).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, AfricanusCrowther said:

Agreed. One potential question to ask: is this program going to train me to be the historian I want to be? Does it offer the language classes, training, funding, and intellectual environment I think I need? And, on my visiting weekend, did I see evidence of these important aspects of the program? In my own field, HYP&S are generally not the programs that are going to produce strong historians (with important exceptions that admitted students have to keep in mind!).

Good advice. Intellectual environment is incredibly important to me. I go to a commuter school right now, and I've had to work really hard to try to find that "intellectual environment," and even then, it is still difficult. That is one of my key factors in choosing a program/city. What are the specifics of that?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 minutes ago, villageelliot said:

Anyone know what's up with NYU? I find it curious that there's a few waitlist results being posted despite there being no wave of acceptances yet. 

I was wondering the same thing.

Would it be arrogant to take the fact that I haven't gotten a waitlist email as a good sign, lol?

Edited by historygeek

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, historygeek said:

I was wondering the same thing.

Would it be arrogant to take the fact that I haven't gotten a waitlist email as a good sign, lol?

As much as I would like to think that as well, it could go a few different ways. That's what I thought about Johns Hopkins, but my rejection seems to just have been posted late. Not to mention the fact that, as hard as it is to think about, we could be getting a rejection too. It seems to me that this means we are not on the wait list. Whether that means we're admitted or denied outright is a different story. Still, rooting for us both! Hopefully good news will come in a few hours.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, villageelliot said:

As much as I would like to think that as well, it could go a few different ways. That's what I thought about Johns Hopkins, but my rejection seems to just have been posted late. Not to mention the fact that, as hard as it is to think about, we could be getting a rejection too. It seems to me that this means we are not on the wait list. Whether that means we're admitted or denied outright is a different story. Still, rooting for us both! Hopefully good news will come in a few hours.

Yep, at this point we're probably either rejected or accepted. Hopefully the latter!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 minutes ago, villageelliot said:

Anyone know what's up with NYU? I find it curious that there's a few waitlist results being posted despite there being no wave of acceptances yet. 

Not sure whether NYU is sending out all responses, but I did get a waitlist email from the program admin fairly early this morning. Best of luck to both of you, hopefully they don't keep you waiting long!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, urbanhistorynerd said:

 

Great advice from both of you - thank you! I wrote that comment in hurry while at work - let me say I told my POI there that I would not make any choices until I visit NW and speak with him. This is also a professor who's work very much influenced my own, I feel very lucky to actually be able to speak to him over the phone. And although I won't be ruling out any program until I can ask serious questions and contemplate, Harvard fits nearly perfectly with my proposed research. Unfortunately, the prof at NW would be the only one remotely in my field of research, and even then, he still in a different thematic theme. 

Regardless, I'm still very interested in the university but I just want to make it clear to him that, at this point, I'm considering the other school over NW. But you're definitely right. I still need to really meet everybody at Harvard to get a feel if this is a place where I want to spend the next 5-7 years in. I was just wondering how other people in my boots handled telling other schools they will be attending a different program.

And I'm also taking placement after graduation into considerable account. Even if I find Northwestern to be more opening and welcoming than Harvard, is passing up Harvard's placement rate really worth it? Nearly everybody around here says the same thing: it's about finding a job afterwards. If NW gives more individual attention (which it seems like it does, so far) than Harvard, would that be worth it if getting a tenure-track is much more difficult afterwards? 

Given my decisions, I haven't regretted my decision at all to favor being in a program which I felt I could get more individualized attention to my professional well-being (and personally!). I've been really surprised how well I have ended up doing in my program and sometimes wondered if I would have had this much success had I gone to a program where I wouldn't have gotten as much individualized attention from the faculty (but a really wonderful intellectual atmosphere!). You'll know better after the campus visits.

I've been told over the years that committees do appreciate a personalized letter of support from advisers-- just a much better feel for the person and his/her project than someone who simply reads your proposal every now and then and doesn't know you well otherwise.  With Kevin Boyle's name on your letters, i wouldn't sweat it turning down Harvard.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.