justdeepwater Posted October 10, 2021 Share Posted October 10, 2021 (edited) Undergrad Institution: Top 3 South Korean University Major: Mathematics and Computer Science (Double)GPA: 3.97/4.0 Math GPA: 4.0/4.0 Type of Student: International Asian male Relevant Courses (A+ unless stated otherwise): Undergraduate level: Calculus I,II, Differential Equations, Linear Algebra, Analysis I, II (A), Modern Algebra I (A), II, Complex Analysis, Topology, Numerical Analysis, Discrete Mathematics, Graph Theory (A), Game Theory, Probability and Statistics, Probability Theory, Mathematical Statistics, Data Structures, Algorithms, Programming Languages, Automata Theory Graduate level: Real Analysis, Algebraic Topology, Combinatorics, Algebraic Geometry, Differential Geometry, Homological Algebra (A), Statistical Inference, Design and Analysis of Algorithms, Computational Geometry TOEFL:115; 30/30/27/28 GRE: 162/170/4.5 GRE Subject Mathematics: N/A Programs Applying: Statistics PhD Research Experience: - virtually no experience; winter research intern in deep learning, some research on graph theory but yielded no result Work Experience: - 2 years as data scientist at a Korean IT company Teaching Experience: Two CS courses, two times math olympiad TA Recommendation Letters: Three; one from a math professor, one from CS professor (who supervised a theoretical CS project which was quite successful but is unrelated to statistics), one from industry boss (senior data scientist, CS PhD) Programming skills: C/C++, Java, Python, SQL, Kotlin, HTML, Javascript, ... Research Interests: theoretical and mathematical aspects of statistics and ML Others: Several awards from nationwide mathematics and programming competitions, several fellowships and scholarships, (probably) funding for graduate study Applying to: Statistics PhD Stanford, Berkeley, Harvard, UChicago, UPenn, UWM, UMichigan, Columbia, Cornell, Yale, UCLA, ... Concerns: Not having relevant research experience/published papers etc. Not enough probability & statistics courses, no LoRs from statisticians Being an international student Hi everyone, this is my first post and I am quite worried about my PhD applications, because I could not find someone similar to me so I have no idea how strong or weak my application is. My biggest concern is the LoRs; I am quite sure that those letters will be strong, but they are not statisticians nor do they work in nearby fields. In fact, my interest was in pure mathematics 3 years ago, but 2 years of industry experience changed a lot (why I ended up in industry working as a data scientist is a rather complex story so I'd choose not to explain); this is why I didn't have meaningful interactions with statistics professors. These are my detailed questions: - Is it going to be a disadvantage not having any LoRs from statisticians? - As stated, I am thinking of getting the third LoR from my company boss. I also have another option of asking statistics professor who taught Probability and Statistics and Statistical Inference classes which I nearly aced. However, I thought the former is better because the professor has nothing much to say other than Did Well In Class, which is evident to the Committee from my transcript. Am I wrong? Should I get one from statistics professor even if the letter is going to simply say DWIC? I very much welcome any advice or feedback. Edited October 10, 2021 by justdeepwater Add courses Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

Stati Posted October 17, 2021 Share Posted October 17, 2021 On 10/10/2021 at 4:24 AM, justdeepwater said: Is it going to be a disadvantage not having any LoRs from statisticians? No one knows. I would say it is not the ideal case though, especially if you are aiming "so-called" top schools. However, if you get strong LORs that demonstrate your solid math background (Math Prof) and your research performance (CS Prof), who knows? Your SOP would be critical in that case, actually in any case. On 10/10/2021 at 4:24 AM, justdeepwater said: - As stated, I am thinking of getting the third LoR from my company boss. I also have another option of asking statistics professor who taught Probability and Statistics and Statistical Inference classes which I nearly aced. However, I thought the former is better because the professor has nothing much to say other than Did Well In Class, which is evident to the Committee from my transcript. Am I wrong? Should I get one from statistics professor even if the letter is going to simply say DWIC? I would stick with the boss if he/she can say more about you and your "academic" potential. Every Ph.D. applicants did well in class. I would also suggest you to apply to as many schools as you can, from top 10 to top 50. This process has a lot of randomness and you may get rejected from those top schools even with a LOR from a Statistics professor, research experience, and a publication. Good luck! Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

StatsG0d Posted October 18, 2021 Share Posted October 18, 2021 I think it matters more that you have letters that attest to your mathematics ability than your statistics ability. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

LifterHappy Posted July 20, 2023 Share Posted July 20, 2023 (edited) I have a profile quite similar to yours, except that I am from a different non-US country. May I ask how your application cycle went? I intend to apply for the Fall 2024 cycle. The only possibly significant difference with my profile is that I don't have any industry experience in statistics, but I did participate in an REU program in the US focused on the applications of math in cryptography. I hope regular experts such as @Stat Assistant Professor @cyberwulf could help with an evaluation. Edited July 20, 2023 by LifterHappy Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

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