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psychedpotato

Need help with decision: UT vs. UH

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Hi all, I have been looking through the social work threads and have found it very comforting to know that there are people who are going through the application and decision process with me. I needed some advice on making a decision on which MSW program to choose. I only applied to two programs which are the University of Texas at Austin and University of Houston programs, I have been accepted to both as well. Problem is, they both have pros and cons for me and I'm having a really hard time choosing which school to attend. Here are the pros and cons: 

UT Pros: 

  • Living on my own (I currently live at home in Houston with my parents)
  • Highly ranked social work program 
  • I get to challenge myself in a new school/city

UT Cons: 

  • I have no professional connections in Austin
  • I would have to start networking again
  • Housing is expensive 

UH Pros: 

  • I have professional connections in Houston 
  • I currently have a mental health internship that helps me gain experience for the future
  • Houston is a city which has a lot of internship opportunities for MSW students
  • I am comfortable with UH (I did my undergrad here) and I know the school 
  • I would save money on housing

UH Cons:

  • I would have to live with my family (I tried negotiating living on my own but parents wont let me)
  • Limited chance to grow as a person on my own* 

*I live in a south asian household which is pretty different from the individualized American ideal, for me living on my own lets me choose where to go whenever I want and do what I want without having my parents criticize or question my decisions/try to control me. 

 

This might sound like an easy decision for some of you, but for me it determines how I will be spending the next two years of my life and if it will help me grow as a person and in my career. I appreciate any help I can get. :) 

 

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Well, you really have to think about what is of most importance to you. Do you care more about the connections you currently have in Houston or do you prefer to expand into a new city? How financially feasible would it be for you to move to Austin?  Do you feel prepared to live on your own in a new city? 

On 3/15/2019 at 5:15 PM, psychedpotato said:
  • I have no professional connections in Austin
  • I would have to start networking again
  • Housing is expensive 

You can always build new connections in Austin. Several individuals applying to the MSW program are not from Austin either so they too will be eager to network and make new professional connections. Yes, you will have to network again. But, you will be able to build your network in Austin on top of the network you already hold in Houston. The one point that is the most difficult is finding affordable housing. You need to think about your current financial situation and see if it is possible to live in Austin. You may need to apply for financial aid, grants, and so on. You could find a place farther in north campus (typically cheaper) or live with roommates that are within your program or you know personally. 

 

On 3/15/2019 at 5:15 PM, psychedpotato said:
  • I would have to live with my family (I tried negotiating living on my own but parents wont let me)
  • Limited chance to grow as a person on my own* 

I would see this as a possible pitfall as well. It is up to you if you feel that this will stunt your growth. We cannot decide this for you. If you feel that you may live within the Houston area for the rest of your life, it may benefit you to continue to build your connections in Houston. 

It seems that you want to go for something new but you are comfortable in Houston. That is perfectly fine. They are both great schools with phenomenal programs. Should you choose to go to Austin, you need figure out if you will be able to handle the change mentally and financially (and if you are up for the challenge). To add to this you need to think about what you want to be able to do past your MSW program. 

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