rinneron Posted March 4, 2009 Share Posted March 4, 2009 So I got extremely lucky this year. Of the 12 schools I applied to, I had two absolute favorites. One rejected me at 8:00 one morning, the other accepted me at 11:39 that same morning. But that's not why I got lucky -- finding that second school at all is where my luck comes in. I didn't even know they had a PhD program; a friend of mine mentioned it to me one afternoon last winter/spring and I decided to check it out (needless to say, they weren't even on my radar during my first go-round with applications two years ago). And BANG, suddenly I'm faced with a program where there's a ton of classes not only in my field, but dealing with my particular critical interests (memory, aesthetics, postmodern theory, art versus fact, etc), a program that's almost identical to the program I imagined as perfect in my head (lots of input from PhDs as to field exams, tailorable language requirements, the chance to design your own seminars to teach as experience, etc), professors who emulate the kind of intellectual I want to be, etc etc etc. And I didn't even know this program existed until about a year ago. What really got me was when I spoke to the DGS when he called to let me know that I was accepted, he was excited to have me in the program because I was such a good fit. I was stunned. So here's my thought: as I've been on this board, I've noticed that we all seem to apply to the same 20-25 schools with little deviation. But there's no way all of us have the same 20-25 sets of interests, needs, desires, etc etc. I found my school on a fluke, but there's got to be a better way. Prospective students must have some way of finding the programs that fit (or come close to fitting) their interests, intellectual and personal needs, campus feel, etc. We've all been hearing so much about the elusive "fit" being a key factor in the decision process, so there must be a way we can better hone in on this "fit" and be better informed applicants. I've been giving this a lot of thought because I want other people to enjoy the kind of satisfaction I've been lucky enough to experience this year. This board is overpopulated with bright minds and people who are actually enrolled in more than just those 20-25 departments: is there a way to gather and share our collective knowledge so prospectives can learn more about what schools seem to "fit" them and make better and more informed decisions about applying? Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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