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Grad School dilemma


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I started a job in my field of interest (science related) right after I graduated as an undergraduate. The original plan was to work for a year and then move onto a PhD at the university I have been working at. I get along great with the professor I have been working for but have developed several questions during my time and feel unable to get any advice. I feel like I’ve started to go a little nuts so if anyone could give me some feedback I would very much appreciate it J.

1.) Is it better to stay with someone you have a great working relationship with? What if you are offered better funding elsewhere? I have been morally conflicted with being loyal to my employer. I also originally had a hard time adapting to the city I live in. Its expensive and I commute a couple hours a day among other challenges so also wanted to look into other programs….

2.) Someone from a very highly ranked school was really interested in me. They said I was the top of any applicant pool, really wanted me in their lab, and would do whatever they could to have it happen…. This was based from my research experiences, classes, similar interests, and a REU paper I wrote. But my GRE and GPA are not perfect (730Q, 430V, 3.2 GPA)…The statistic page on the website was just sub perfect…My letters and research may give me an edge but my grades etc are not great.. I’m afraid he will change his mind when he sees this on my application…

I guess I just don’t know what’s the best way to go about this. Is it better to go with funding regardless? If you have an amazing advisor to stay loyal? If you haven’t been completely happy moving to consider some place new? If someone says they want you in but you have imperfections will that likely change?

With my situation it has been hard to find outside advice. So any comments would be greatly appreciated! And I would more than be happy to give feedback to anyone’s questions and concerns as well.

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It might be a good idea to let the interested professor know your GPA and ask him what he thinks. I was in a similar situation, and I told the professor and just asked him if he thought it would be realistic for me to be accepted or if I should do something to make myself more competitive and try next year. He was very receptive and was still interested in my application. If the professor is going to see it anyway, you may as well tell him yourself I think.

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