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Hey Everyone --

I thought it might be nice to start a thread about campus visits for a few reasons. See if other folks are attending the same visit weekend as you. If you've already toured a campus give some insight and impressions. If it's an interview weekend, what types of questions did you/should you ask, what did they ask you etc. It would also let us connect on the same schools. 

That being said -- is anyone planning on going to UT- Austin's communications studies weekend in February? It's one of my top choices so I'm definitely going to try to go. 

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University of Minnesota is a very big (spans across both Minneapolis and St. Paul and has 30k-ish students). Public transit (light rail) runs RIGHT BY Ford Hall, where Communication Studies is housed (along with Gender, Women's and Sexuality Studies and feminist studies and another I can't remember.) Comm Studies has an entire floor to itself and there's 3 or 4 different offices for grad students and a really nice lounge with big windows looking over campus. The student center has a bar! Bathrooms are nice n clean (important to me as my current school's bathrooms are ATROCIOUS and I practically live on campus during the school year).

We toured the department before we decided to apply. We had an hour meeting with the chair of the department and it went great-- he's very friendly and very helpful, he knows what he's talking about but doesn't condescend to you. When I finished that meeting I knew I was going to apply because I liked him so much. We also got lunch with a couple grad students who were open about the program with us, and then we met with another faculty member who's interests line up with my husband's. After that, we got to sit in on a class with a professor who has long been a powerhouse in rhetoric and it was awesome-- definitely a pretty leftist vibe (great for me) and the atmosphere of the classroom was great-- supportive of pushing each other and challenging each other, which is the kind of environment where I thrive.

I was able to meet with several grad students during our visit and other than the meeting with the chair, this was the most invaluable part of my trip. I think it's good when the grad students are slightly bitter but not miserable, and generally have good things to say about the department but aren't overflowing with "everything is perfect" because then I feel like it's more a sales pitch than an honest conversation (how NCA's grad fair felt at times, to be honest).

All admitted students at the UMN receive funding, which I also appreciated about my visit-- the funding is competitive and cost of living in the cities isn't horrible for how great they are. I LOVE the Twin Cities. They're big, but not overwhelming. Almost every band/artist you want to see will come through Minneapolis. Great food, great social justice work happening there, great architecture and a strong identity (also important to me after living in a city where it feels like everyone is in purgatory waiting to move on to something better).

 

(forgive typos and grammar issues-- on new phone and autocorrect is annoying)

Edited by heyDW
Hehe

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2 hours ago, av2010 said:

Visiting West Virginia 2/5-2/7

Nice! Let us know how it went and what questions you asked. I will visit Purdue on 2/24-2/26

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6 hours ago, kirbs005 said:

@DBear no! I'm going to be gone that week, I would have gotten coffee with you or something. 

Oh no :( that's too bad!! Are you going on visits too? 

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It is that time of the year again! 

I just found this thread with so many helpful comments (list of questions to ask, what to wear, etc.)!

Just curious, is it normal that school reimburses some of your cost only if you accept their offer? I am thinking of visiting but international traveling costs a lot...

 

 

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3 hours ago, Padma011 said:

Just curious, is it normal that school reimburses some of your cost only if you accept their offer? I am thinking of visiting but international traveling costs a lot...

Do you mean if the school officially invited you to interview, or if you were scheduling an unofficial visit?

Official visits--I would ask up front if they didn't clarify in the invitation. If they are not reimbursing, I wouldn't travel for an interview.

Unofficial visits--not normal to be reimbursed at all, regardless of whether you're accepted or not.

Edited by deshypothequiez

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Currently, heading to MSU this Thursday and Friday for a campus visit, and going to Purdue's welcome weekend next Friday and Saturday.

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Wednesday Feb 21, I'm going to UIC for a campus visit. I requested it, but they're going to show me around in depth and I'm going to sit in on a course. This time Ill be able to see the graduate office spaces, the research resources and the grad rep is going to show me the best places for apartments. 

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MSU just sent me my schedule over the next two days.  Shit just got real.  :lol:

 

Really, if I can just not make an ass of myself, I'll be happy.

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21 hours ago, E-P said:

MSU just sent me my schedule over the next two days.  Shit just got real.  :lol:

 

Really, if I can just not make an ass of myself, I'll be happy.

Is MSU for the Communication PhD program or the Media & Information PhD? I applied for the Communication track and have heard nothing from them (even after an email).

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