metaphorical Posted January 9, 2011 Share Posted January 9, 2011 Hi everyone, I'm new to the forum (and this process in general), and would really appreciate any input! I'm a senior in college, and I'd always thought that I wanted to go into academia. As a result, I've never had any work experience outside of research internships. This past fall, I applied to several PhD programs in Psychology/CogSci. So far I've heard back from 3 schools inviting me to interviews. On a whim during a Career Fair on campus, I also submitted a resume to Microsoft just to see what would happen. I ended up going through two interviews with Microsoft and (very luckily and unexpectedly) received a job offer as a Program Manager. The job pays very well and is something that I would also be very interested in--I'm passionate about technology and how people communicate (hence CogSci). I am now considering accepting the job offer and reapplying to PhD programs after a year or two. My reasoning is that I could save up some money to use when I am a starving grad student, and also gain some work experience to make sure that research is what I really want to do. Admittedly, the job would not be that related to Psychology/CogSci research, but I'm hoping that the skills I would gain while working--communication skills, managing skills, technical/programming skills--would help my research career in the long run. However, I'm also worried that I would become "out of touch" with research during the two years I would be working, and significantly lower my chances of getting into an equally good program when I reapply. I guess this dilemma leads me to several related questions: (1) Is it helpful to work first before getting a PhD, or should I go straight out of college? (2) Would industry experience help me with my research career in the long run? (3) Would I be less likely to get into a program if I decline it this year to work and then reapply in a few years? Thank you very much! I really appreciate your advice and comments. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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