Anita Posted April 6, 2010 Share Posted April 6, 2010 So I got into the *perfect* program. Top 10, perfect advisor interest match, great city, etc. Needless to say, I was psyched...until I visited. Turns out this advisor has a history of being a nightmare (apologies for the weird unisex pronouns - can't risk being identified here). Their lab had a 75% attrition rate, their former students graduated with no pubs because they didn't bother to read their papers and refused to let the students submit papers themselves (many have left academia because they couldn't find jobs), they seem to enjoy overworking and verbally abusing their students, and various other horror stories. After spending a total of around 30 hours interviewing 7 of their current and former students, with various backgrounds and degrees of academic success, who all testified to their advisor's sadism, I've been reduced to a nervous wreck. By April 15, I have to say yes or no. I'm seriously considering forgoing the acceptance, getting an RA job (or just taking the year off if I can't find any) and applying again next year. Now, my dear GC'ers, my question is, how common is this type of advisor? Will I have a better chance of avoiding them by applying again? What are the signs I should look for before applying? All I want is someone who doesn't hold up my publishing productivity, and doesn't terrify their students. Before suggestions crop up for essentially making the best of a bad situation, no, I can't switch advisors without abandoning my research interest; and no, no conclusive strategy has ever been found for making this person more productive/agreeable. The only advice that her students agreed on was "have thick skin". Thanks GC; I trust y'all Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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