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Deciding between two programs: What to prioritize?


Kramhsiri

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I've been puzzling over my admissions predicament for a while, and was curious to get the opinions of other Anthropology admits. After getting shutout last year, this year I have two very solid offers from programs that I would both love attending. I'm just not sure which one would be best to attend, or which one would be best for my future as an academic. I'm applying for archaeology programs and my two choices are:

 

Program 1:

  • $33,000/year stipend for 5 years
  • TA-ing for 5 years
  • Well respected and well-known institution, not a powerhouse in my field but strong regional focus that meshes with my own
  • Three faculty members that all sort-of do work related to my interests.
  • Would-be advisor uses same methodological approaches I am interested in, but different theoretical questions 
  • My would-be advisor doesn't have tenure, hasn't graduated a student, has 1 current student
  • Other two faculty members are well known in the field, but might not be willing to work with me
  • Nice campus and facilities
  • The city is less interesting, but cheaper, would be a fine place to live.

Program 2:

  • $20,000/year stipend for 5 years
  • TA-ing for 2 years, possibility for teaching summer courses as professor of record
  • Institution is relatively newer, a powerhouse in biology research but not SUPER well known for Anthropology or my regional focus
  • One faculty member who does work exactly related to my interests
  • Would-be advisor uses different methodological approaches, but same theoretical questions
  • Would-be advisor has tenure, has graduated 4 students, has 4 current students, and is a publishing powerhouse, willing to publish heavily with his students, is easy to get along with
  • Nice campus and facilities
  • City is interesting, but more expensive, would be a fun place to live

I honestly flip back and forth by the hour, and April 15th is fast approaching. Do I go with the well-established school with more money, or the well-established advisor with more publishing potential?

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