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I have an interview this week and I figured I would post what the school sent me for the schedule, and update how it went/what they asked etc after. Its a pharm/phys phd program.

10-1040 (meet with professor 1)

1045-1125 (meet with professor 2)

1130-1210 (meet with professor 3)

1230-130 (lunch with current students)

145-225 (meet with professor 4)

230-310 (meet with professor 5)

315-355 (meet with professor 6)

depart.

Hopefully I'll be able to talk about my reserach enough to fill out a good amount of time, and have enough questions for them about their research.

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So the day ended up flying by much more quickly than I would have thought. The first professor I met with was the program coordinator and really just gave me an overview of the whole program. I asked her the more technical question I had on the program itself such as class size, teaching requirements, target entering class etc. The only question she asked me was why I had picked that program. The rest of the professors I met with the only questions I was asked were to explain my research and again why I wanted to go to that particular program. It definitely helped to know their research because I had a few fairly technical questions thought out for some of them and it seemed like they were pretty impressed that I not only knew about their research but took some time to think up a decent question on their topics. The only curveball I got was the last professor of the day asked me what I would do if i was working on a project and had a solid question i was trying to answer, developed an assay, yet still wasn't getting results. And what he was really looking for was communication. He wanted to know that I wouldn't just be the lonely scientist pouding away in the lab, and that I would be communicating with other people in the field and the other professors in the department to try and troubleshoot.

Over all I think everything went real well except for the fact that I mentioned wanting to work in industry as opposed to academia after my phd. Apparently they don't like that. Oh well, now I know for the next one. The program is only taking 2 students this year so I think that screw up could cost me, but they told me they would let me know in a couple of weeks, so we'll see.

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thanks for the update! Your experience was similar to mine even though I'm humanities. I think it's better that you were honest about wanting to work in industry! You want a program that wouldn't be offended by that anyway. Good luck!!

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Over all I think everything went real well except for the fact that I mentioned wanting to work in industry as opposed to academia after my phd. Apparently they don't like that. Oh well, now I know for the next one. The program is only taking 2 students this year so I think that screw up could cost me, but they told me they would let me know in a couple of weeks, so we'll see.

It's true that academia is the "correct" answer to that question, but it's such an important question that I really think you should be honest, even if it hurts your chances of getting in. I hope you'll find a program that will support you in your goals!

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