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Fit with assistant profs?

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Maybe. The biggest problem with "fitting" your work with pre-tenure folks is that they may not be there (or even planning to be there) by the time you start working on your diss in earnest. A friend of mine went to a program only to see her hoped-for advisor get denied tenure/fired the summer before she arrived.

Now, if you have 2-3 faculty members that you fit with, that's another story. That gives you backup if one or two get the boot/move on.

The good part of working with pre-tenure folks is that they 1) likely don't have a ton of people they are chairing, and, if you are at a program where you basically are accepted to work with a particular PI, that can matter. They also tend to have heavier article/conference output with fewer established contributors, so you can have an opportunity to jump on to some projects.

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Thank you @bhr for your reply.

Yes what you say is exactly what I was worried about. I am listing a couple professors just to be sure, but my primary choice tends to be the assistant professors.

As you say, this may be a problem in graduate school and perhaps during the application process, but I don't know how to solve this problem. I mean, I can't just change around my research interests and the whole SOP just because the best fitting professors don't have tenure. Is the best solution just to list one or two more professors, or do you have any other suggestions?


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