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That would be me. My first acceptance and I’m thrilled.

just got my Michigan offer. 6 years funding. Fuck. 

IN AT YALE!!!  IM GOING TO LOSE MY MIND I DON'T KNOW WHO I AM ANYMORE 

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4 minutes ago, killerbunny said:

In other news, I just graded an essay describing a French aristocrat in an early 18th-century portrait as a MILF.

 

And *I* have to ask, were they wrong??

If it makes you feel any better, last week I graded a draft that indicated Tennessee Williams was "the best African American play writer[sic] in American history." (Which reminds me of an apocryphal story about someone from my undergrad cohort who, apparently, wrote an entire paper on Emily Dickinson while laboring under the misunderstanding of her being a Black poet.)

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6 minutes ago, vondafkossum said:

And *I* have to ask, were they wrong??

If it makes you feel any better, last week I graded a draft that indicated Tennessee Williams was "the best African American play writer[sic] in American history." (Which reminds me of an apocryphal story about someone from my undergrad cohort who, apparently, wrote an entire paper on Emily Dickinson while laboring under the misunderstanding of her being a Black poet.)

Oh, no. Those are some unfortunate mistakes.

I used to grade standardized exams and one ninth grader somehow mixed up Anne Frank and Harriet Tubman. 

Edited by killerbunny
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9 minutes ago, vondafkossum said:

And *I* have to ask, were they wrong??

If it makes you feel any better, last week I graded a draft that indicated Tennessee Williams was "the best African American play writer[sic] in American history." (Which reminds me of an apocryphal story about someone from my undergrad cohort who, apparently, wrote an entire paper on Emily Dickinson while laboring under the misunderstanding of her being a Black poet.)

Having seen the PM, I definitely think the case can be made. 😜 

And that story is cringe inducing on absolutely so many levels. 

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20 minutes ago, Small potato said:

Really really hoping the Harvard and Columbia rejections come out today. I’m starting to feel like I just wasn’t ready this cycle and I’m much more prepared for next year. But also, I’m going to be so sad when I start getting things together for the upcoming year and the 2021 thread isn’t up yet!

agreed! Just got my rejection from Princeton and was weirdly relieved to get it. 

 

and also, if I didn't want to leave the door open to reapply at Columbia, I would totally withdrawal my application today to get to do the rejecting for once! 

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10 hours ago, MundaneSoul said:

Maybe this is too vulnerable to post here, but I’ve just spent the day teetering on the edge of nervous breakdown because I was so excited about moving on to my PhD, and then after doing some reading on this forum and looking at the state of the job market, I’ve completely lost all hope that I’m going to be able to find a decent job at the end of it all. I just want to do what is right for my partner and child, and now I feel like maybe that’s not this. I don’t know. I feel so lost right now. Sorry. Sorry for oversharing.

Don't apologize at all, we all feel the same fears on an almost cosmic level. These are tough decisions to work through and we must be brutally honest with ourselves with how far we're willing/able to go. However, I wouldn't tell anyone that all hope is lost. Some of my previous professors have gone so far as to tell me not to get a Phd (not because of my own aptitude, but because of the job market) and some have said go for it, but only if it's fully funded. There are alternatives, however, and I'm in the process of becoming familiar with them myself right now, because I firmly believe in having a plan B, C, and D. You could possibly teach at a community college or a private secondary school (depending on the state), work in publishing, do grant writing for non-profits, or get a post doc (again, those are competitive too). I had a professor who taught at 3 different community colleges as an adjunct, and while that might not be great or realistic for everyone, it's something. I hope you have a strong network you can lean on during these stressful times (you definitely have us!) and gain further insight to help give you some clarity. 

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11 hours ago, MundaneSoul said:

Maybe this is too vulnerable to post here, but I’ve just spent the day teetering on the edge of nervous breakdown because I was so excited about moving on to my PhD, and then after doing some reading on this forum and looking at the state of the job market, I’ve completely lost all hope that I’m going to be able to find a decent job at the end of it all. I just want to do what is right for my partner and child, and now I feel like maybe that’s not this. I don’t know. I feel so lost right now. Sorry. Sorry for oversharing.

Agree with all the advice offered above. I'm a newcomer to the forum, but I think it's definitely a place to hold space for other's pain and lift up those who are having success. I'm trying to frame my potential shut-out in terms of having more time to consider what I really want to do with life in the long-term. For so long, the PhD has just been the logical next-step such that I never really took time to reflect on what taking that step meant and what life would be like beyond it. I'm hoping to take the next few months to explore what else is out there, including everything from publishing to law school to pubic policy think tanks, haha. Even if I end up getting in off the waitlist and deciding to go, I think I will be entering into it with a much deeper commitment to it and understanding of why I want to do it. 

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13 hours ago, lotsoffeelings said:

I'm trying to frame my potential shut-out in terms of having more time to consider what I really want to do with life in the long-term. For so long, the PhD has just been the logical next-step such that I never really took time to reflect on what taking that step meant and what life would be like beyond it. I'm hoping to take the next few months to explore what else is out there, including everything from publishing to law school to pubic policy think tanks, haha. Even if I end up getting in off the waitlist and deciding to go, I think I will be entering into it with a much deeper commitment to it and understanding of why I want to do it. 

Completely agree! I took it for granted that I knew I wanted to do academia for basically all of college, if not longer. I didn’t do enough thinking about what it means to transition out of undergraduate research into graduate school research because I got so used to knowing how to navigate my own university, and I think this is giving me the opportunity to really reflect.

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2 hours ago, Wimsey said:

Thank you! I am trying to concentrate on my acceptances instead of my rejections. :) 

Same. I am really thankful for my acceptances. I don't wanna sound ungrateful or anything. But it's been hard to receive 5.5 rejections (expecting the Columbia one soon) in a row, with one being from my reach school. It's quite hard to separate rejections from self worth (and having done Creative Writing in undergrad, I consider myself a pro at receiving rejections). This process has been unusually and probably unfairly brutal. I know some people are also facing shut out. Sending so much strength to everyone here. You are definitely worth it. 

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Spoke to two friends last night lamenting about the current situation. Neither understands the world of academia, but were supportive nonetheless. However, when I explained that one possible reason for rejection is that another medievalist was chosen over me, one friend shouts, "Wait! God! There are more of you??? Who the f**k studies that?? Who else chooses to study medieval sh*t??" Then, my other eloquent friend shouts, "Nerds, that's who! You should start a nerd school, so the rest of the nerds can attend nerd school!"

And there we have it, friends. The origin story of how I started my very own "medieval nerd school."

All are welcome. 

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6 minutes ago, gooniesneversaydie said:

Spoke to two friends last night lamenting about the current situation. Neither understands the world of academia, but were supportive nonetheless. However, when I explained that one possible reason for rejection is that another medievalist was chosen over me, one friend shouts, "Wait! God! There are more of you??? Who the f**k studies that?? Who else chooses to study medieval sh*t??" Then, my other eloquent friend shouts, "Nerds, that's who! You should start a nerd school, so the rest of the nerds can attend nerd school!"

And there we have it, friends. The origin story of how I started my very own "medieval nerd school."

All are welcome. 

What about Americanists? I, too, wish to attend nerd school.

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Between that Princeton rejection and silence on Rutgers' side, I think I will be capping the cycle at 4a/4r/1w. My decision falls to JHU vs. NYU, and I will be visiting both before making the choice. It's crazy how the acceptances did turn out to be my best fits/top choices, and JHU wasn't even put off by my terrible GRE subject test score taken in 2016 (for anyone applying in the future, don't worry too much about the subject test!). 

I was shut out last year while finishing my MA, including from NYU. Taking another year to polish my materials (a WS from my completed thesis, which is 100x better than last year's WS), knowing how best to articulate my ideas in the SoP, and getting better letters from my professors changed everything. With a job, I am also more financially prepared to make the move, and know for sure that a PhD is what I want to do. So to anyone who is applying right out of undergrad or MA and not getting the results you want, it may really be worth it to take a gap year, as you would be more prepared and knowledgeable about the process. 

If anyone has any knowledge about the programs at JHU or NYU, I would love to hear them! Thanks everyone for your advice and commiseration, and best of luck to those still waiting!

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