Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Forum for the GRE subject test in mathematics.
davis7e
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Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2018 6:02 pm

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby davis7e » Mon Apr 15, 2019 7:58 am

For those stressing about today - one of my friends had one masters offer (despite applying to the PhD program at that school) and no PhD offers before Thursday. He then received an offer on Thursday, another yesterday and one today! So, wild things can happen at the last minute.

Best of luck to everybody!

Dopeboyz
Posts: 11
Joined: Sat Sep 01, 2018 12:53 am

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby Dopeboyz » Mon Apr 15, 2019 12:32 pm

April 15th and nothing from UIC, I'm thinking of just going with my current offer even though there is someone at UIC that I really want to work with.

MMDE
Posts: 106
Joined: Sat Sep 30, 2017 5:04 pm

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby MMDE » Mon Apr 15, 2019 2:07 pm

Dopeboyz wrote:April 15th and nothing from UIC, I'm thinking of just going with my current offer even though there is someone at UIC that I really want to work with.


I also haven't heard from UIC, as well as 4 other schools (including my top choice!). Would it be advisable to give them a call?

Dopeboyz
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Joined: Sat Sep 01, 2018 12:53 am

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby Dopeboyz » Mon Apr 15, 2019 2:32 pm

MMDE wrote:
Dopeboyz wrote:April 15th and nothing from UIC, I'm thinking of just going with my current offer even though there is someone at UIC that I really want to work with.


I also haven't heard from UIC, as well as 4 other schools (including my top choice!). Would it be advisable to give them a call?

I doubt they will pick up tbh.

prospectivestudent69
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Joined: Mon Jan 28, 2019 2:54 pm

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby prospectivestudent69 » Mon Apr 15, 2019 4:20 pm

I'm still on the waitlist at Duke and have yet to hear anything from Columbia. Should I email and inquire or is it not worth it?

blahquaker
Posts: 44
Joined: Thu Jan 11, 2018 10:36 am

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby blahquaker » Mon Apr 15, 2019 5:12 pm

prospectivestudent69 wrote:I'm still on the waitlist at Duke and have yet to hear anything from Columbia. Should I email and inquire or is it not worth it?

As for the waitlist, it doesn't hurt to email, but don't be surprised if no one replies today.

But if you haven't heard anything from a school yet, then it's probably not happening. (edit: this is just my guess. I could always be wrong...)

djysyed
Posts: 359
Joined: Sat Oct 28, 2017 9:59 pm

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby djysyed » Mon Apr 15, 2019 5:36 pm

Dopeboyz wrote:April 15th and nothing from UIC, I'm thinking of just going with my current offer even though there is someone at UIC that I really want to work with.


I'd try calling them or emailing some of the professors. At the moment, the faculty are preparing to go on strike so you would want to email them as quickly as possible.

tzwxy
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri Feb 22, 2019 8:09 pm

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby tzwxy » Mon Apr 15, 2019 6:09 pm

Anyone heard back from UPenn? Just want to know where my application fee goes. :?

DiscoVolante
Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:47 am

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby DiscoVolante » Mon Apr 15, 2019 11:04 pm

pythag123 wrote:
lkguy wrote:Anyone going to University of Florida this fall? :D


Yo! I am... feel free to pm me


Likewise here!

superballzach
Posts: 25
Joined: Mon Oct 30, 2017 8:54 pm

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby superballzach » Tue Apr 16, 2019 12:26 am

Just accepted an offer to UIC! Anybody heading there as well?

ponchan
Posts: 77
Joined: Sat Apr 14, 2018 6:30 pm

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby ponchan » Tue Apr 16, 2019 10:54 am

Very excited to never look at this website again! Good luck to all.

djysyed
Posts: 359
Joined: Sat Oct 28, 2017 9:59 pm

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby djysyed » Tue Apr 16, 2019 10:47 pm

superballzach wrote:Just accepted an offer to UIC! Anybody heading there as well?

Dudeeeee come visit and I'll give you a personal tour!!!

ponchan wrote:Very excited to never look at this website again! Good luck to all.

Same fam

riffraff11235
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2019 5:28 pm

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby riffraff11235 » Thu Apr 18, 2019 1:40 am

Deadlines were on Monday and I never got a response from UIUC on my waitlist decision. I'm just going to assume I wasn't accepted...

ethanmhny
Posts: 21
Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2018 9:41 am

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby ethanmhny » Thu Apr 18, 2019 7:32 am

headed to Oregon State, if any of yall are going there too hmu

kanep96
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:00 am

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby kanep96 » Thu Apr 18, 2019 11:01 am

I would like some advice. I got into two schools for a Masters Program in Mathematics-related programs recently (yay!). One of which doesn't have a full tuition waver, but the school is pretty wonderful and is my first choice (Johns Hopkins). The other is Georgia Southern, and that offer includes a waived tuition and a paid assistantship for 10k during the school year. I've pretty much already decided that, even though Johns is my first choice, the sheer amount of debt I'd put myself in by going there would be detrimental to me financially - but I'm still considering going here because, like I said, its my first choice. On the other hand, Georgia Southern gave me the news two days ago on the 16th, and told me that I had to make a decision by the 19th - only three days. I asked if that was the "hard deadline", and they said it was. I asked for an extension, and they are giving me until Monday, the 22nd, to make a decision.

There are five other schools that I am waiting to hear from (and Johns Hopkins is still waiting for me to make my decision), and I would not want to accept Georgia Southern's offer just to get one from another school that I think fits my interests better, is closer to home, and/or gives me a more lucrative assistantship opportunity. But, what if I don't get into any of the other programs? I don't want to tell Georgia Southern "no", just to not get into any other programs. But conversely, I don't know if it would be responsible or smart of me to accept Georgia Southern's offer, just to receive a better offer from somewhere else and have to tell them "Hey, so, I know I accepted the offer, but I'm going to have to pull that decision back." I would like some advice as to what my next step should/could be if you were in my shoes, and also if Johns Hopkins is worth attending over other schools since it is an excellent school even when going there would put me tens-of-thousands of dollars in debt and the others would be (potentially) accepting me for free and with an assistantship. Thank you.

davis7e
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Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2018 6:02 pm

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby davis7e » Thu Apr 18, 2019 11:12 am

It depends on what your end goal is. If your overall goal is to eventually attain a PhD then attending either may be fine. For example, you could attend Georgia Southern to earn a masters and then "trade up" in the sense that you could reapply for PhD programs toward the end of your time at Georgia Southern. In that case, you wouldn't acquire too much debt and you would be a much stronger candidate later for PhD programs than you are now. On the other hand, attending Johns Hopkins can open doors if your end goal is a masters degree. You may have to take out more loans but perhaps the long term wealth may make attendance worthwhile but that can depend. If your end goal is to attain a PhD then Johns Hopkins would undoubtedly prepare you well but perhaps you could get into Johns Hopkins' program later after attending Georgia Southern. There are a lot of things to consider here but I am sure that whatever you decide will work out in the end.

kanep96
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:00 am

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby kanep96 » Thu Apr 18, 2019 11:55 am

davis7e wrote:It depends on what your end goal is. If your overall goal is to eventually attain a PhD then attending either may be fine. For example, you could attend Georgia Southern to earn a masters and then "trade up" in the sense that you could reapply for PhD programs toward the end of your time at Georgia Southern. In that case, you wouldn't acquire too much debt and you would be a much stronger candidate later for PhD programs than you are now. On the other hand, attending Johns Hopkins can open doors if your end goal is a masters degree. You may have to take out more loans but perhaps the long term wealth may make attendance worthwhile but that can depend. If your end goal is to attain a PhD then Johns Hopkins would undoubtedly prepare you well but perhaps you could get into Johns Hopkins' program later after attending Georgia Southern. There are a lot of things to consider here but I am sure that whatever you decide will work out in the end.

Thank you for the insight! My end goal is a PhD as of now. After thinking about it for awhile, and talking with buddies in PhD programs, I decided that I wasn't sure if I was prepared for PhD program, so I'm going for a masters first. They did say that masters programs are pretty different from PhD programs, but either way, coming out of a masters program I can decide to stop there and find a career, or I can apply to PhD programs if I feel like it is what I want to do. I figured that if I went to a school that wasn't Johns Hopkins for a masters and I worked hard, got great grades, and (hopefully!) take part in some published research, I would have a much better chance at getting into very solid PhD programs in Applied Math, like Johns Hopkins, for example. I'm just frustrated mainly because they gave me the acceptance and are asking me to decide in less than a week. I understand it's April now and it's pretty late in the game, but it's still nerve-wracking for me.

The other schools I'm applying to include U Georgia, Miami University (OH), U Wisconsin at Milwaukee, and Clemson. I have sent emails to all of these schools, and they all are making admissions decisions throughout the month of April, and a few even said they send out acceptances into May as well. Referencing my other question, what would you do if you were in my shoes and had to decide acceptance so fast, when other schools are still waiting to send you acceptances/denials? Accepting one offer just to (possibly) deny it later seems kind of unethical, but it might be the best choice for me, depending on what happens.

davis7e
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Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby davis7e » Thu Apr 18, 2019 1:19 pm

I would probably hold out until the last minute and take the Georgia Southern offer. In my experience, I received no offers other than at my current institution and they were very supportive of my decision to earn a masters degree and "trade up". I had another shot at the GRE subject exam (and prepared a bit more this time), I had peers in my exact same situation, I had the opportunity to take qualifying exams, I gained valuable teaching experience and two years of financial stability. I will be attending somewhere else in the fall but I would say that spending two years at a place that may be comparable to Georgia Southern was a great decision in the end. Others may not agree but that was my personal experience. It was an opportunity to prepare myself more for somewhere else. There are others in my program who will attending another institution this fall (UMich, TAMU, Syracuse as examples) and we all feel reasonably prepared (and very excited) for this next step. In some cases, we simply weren't prepared well enough from our undergraduate experience (some people decide to major in math at the very end of their undergrad and others didn't have enough to even complete the major or some had other personal matters that got into the way).

DiscoVolante
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Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:47 am

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby DiscoVolante » Thu Apr 18, 2019 2:48 pm

I was giving serious consideration to my GA Southern offer as well. You'll have more free time to supplement your income than you would at a PhD program. It's a cool, laid back school. Savannah, Hilton Head, and Tybee are right down the road and they have a good PhD placement record. A friend of mine went there and is about to get his doctorate from MUSC.

kanep96
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Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:00 am

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby kanep96 » Thu Apr 18, 2019 5:13 pm

DiscoVolante wrote:I was giving serious consideration to my GA Southern offer as well. You'll have more free time to supplement your income than you would at a PhD program. It's a cool, laid back school. Savannah, Hilton Head, and Tybee are right down the road and they have a good PhD placement record. A friend of mine went there and is about to get his doctorate from MUSC.


Well thats very nice to hear! There are a few other schools that I would like to go to as much as GA Southern, but only having a handful of days to make my decision has been... not great. Its nice to hear about being able to supplement my income easier - that was one part of it all that was worrying me. And I can assume that "laid back school" extends to the professors and students? The mathematics and computer science departments at my alma mater had a very laid back vibe, and it was enjoyable. Could talk to my professors like they were real people, about real things concerning my present and future goals as an academic. Really felt like a lot of them genuinely cared about the students.

When it comes to GA Southern, I'm obviously very interested in attending, it would be pretty unfortunate to accept their offer and then get a nicer offer from a school I'm equally interested in after the fact, you know? Hypothetically speaking, if I accept this offer from GA Southern, and then another program offers me a spot in their program that is more lucrative than GA Southern's, would it be unethical and/or rude of me to "pull out" of GA Southern and attend the other school? Is it even possible? Part of me says "Of course it is, duh. You gave them your word, now keep it." and the other part says "You do what's best for you, don't force yourself to attend one school over another because you'll feel bad pulling out the first one."

kanep96
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Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:00 am

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby kanep96 » Thu Apr 18, 2019 5:13 pm

davis7e wrote:I would probably hold out until the last minute and take the Georgia Southern offer. In my experience, I received no offers other than at my current institution and they were very supportive of my decision to earn a masters degree and "trade up". I had another shot at the GRE subject exam (and prepared a bit more this time), I had peers in my exact same situation, I had the opportunity to take qualifying exams, I gained valuable teaching experience and two years of financial stability. I will be attending somewhere else in the fall but I would say that spending two years at a place that may be comparable to Georgia Southern was a great decision in the end. Others may not agree but that was my personal experience. It was an opportunity to prepare myself more for somewhere else. There are others in my program who will attending another institution this fall (UMich, TAMU, Syracuse as examples) and we all feel reasonably prepared (and very excited) for this next step. In some cases, we simply weren't prepared well enough from our undergraduate experience (some people decide to major in math at the very end of their undergrad and others didn't have enough to even complete the major or some had other personal matters that got into the way).


I figured as much. I'll likely wait until Monday (the final day) to take the GA Southern offer, in case another school gives me an offer that rivals the GA Southern one. Also, by "trading up", does that kind of mean focusing on bolstering your resume and getting excellent grades so you can get into a "better school" than the one you went to to get your masters, or going to a "better school" a couple of years into a PhD? I wasn't sure if you could transfer out of one masters program to another one and keep your progress (but hey, what do I know?). I feel relatively prepared for the masters program, but for a PhD? It just seems so daunting. I'll be more comfortable with it after the masters I hope! Also, as an aside, I really like the point you made about "two years of financial stability". I was blessed to have my folks help me pay for undergraduate school, but graduate school is all me. The last thing I want is to go to school while constantly worrying about the looming 50k+ debt over my head that will start accruing interest once I graduate. Ill be beyond happy attending GA Southern, but if I accept there and then Case Western, Miami (OH), or UGA offer me a spot in their masters program with, oh, a 15k-20k assistantship, it's not going to feel all that good, ya know? Either way, the fact that I get to even go to school this fall is beyond exciting - can't wait!

DiscoVolante
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Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby DiscoVolante » Thu Apr 18, 2019 6:54 pm

kanep96 wrote:
DiscoVolante wrote:I was giving serious consideration to my GA Southern offer as well. You'll have more free time to supplement your income than you would at a PhD program. It's a cool, laid back school. Savannah, Hilton Head, and Tybee are right down the road and they have a good PhD placement record. A friend of mine went there and is about to get his doctorate from MUSC.


Well thats very nice to hear! There are a few other schools that I would like to go to as much as GA Southern, but only having a handful of days to make my decision has been... not great. Its nice to hear about being able to supplement my income easier - that was one part of it all that was worrying me. And I can assume that "laid back school" extends to the professors and students? The mathematics and computer science departments at my alma mater had a very laid back vibe, and it was enjoyable. Could talk to my professors like they were real people, about real things concerning my present and future goals as an academic. Really felt like a lot of them genuinely cared about the students.

When it comes to GA Southern, I'm obviously very interested in attending, it would be pretty unfortunate to accept their offer and then get a nicer offer from a school I'm equally interested in after the fact, you know? Hypothetically speaking, if I accept this offer from GA Southern, and then another program offers me a spot in their program that is more lucrative than GA Southern's, would it be unethical and/or rude of me to "pull out" of GA Southern and attend the other school? Is it even possible? Part of me says "Of course it is, duh. You gave them your word, now keep it." and the other part says "You do what's best for you, don't force yourself to attend one school over another because you'll feel bad pulling out the first one."


If you get written release then declining after the fact jives with the 4/15 resolution and I'm sure that terminal master's programs get that often. You should feel good about your prospects either way! Congrats!

davis7e
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Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby davis7e » Thu Apr 18, 2019 9:33 pm

kanep96 wrote:
davis7e wrote:I would probably hold out until the last minute and take the Georgia Southern offer. In my experience, I received no offers other than at my current institution and they were very supportive of my decision to earn a masters degree and "trade up". I had another shot at the GRE subject exam (and prepared a bit more this time), I had peers in my exact same situation, I had the opportunity to take qualifying exams, I gained valuable teaching experience and two years of financial stability. I will be attending somewhere else in the fall but I would say that spending two years at a place that may be comparable to Georgia Southern was a great decision in the end. Others may not agree but that was my personal experience. It was an opportunity to prepare myself more for somewhere else. There are others in my program who will attending another institution this fall (UMich, TAMU, Syracuse as examples) and we all feel reasonably prepared (and very excited) for this next step. In some cases, we simply weren't prepared well enough from our undergraduate experience (some people decide to major in math at the very end of their undergrad and others didn't have enough to even complete the major or some had other personal matters that got into the way).


I figured as much. I'll likely wait until Monday (the final day) to take the GA Southern offer, in case another school gives me an offer that rivals the GA Southern one. Also, by "trading up", does that kind of mean focusing on bolstering your resume and getting excellent grades so you can get into a "better school" than the one you went to to get your masters, or going to a "better school" a couple of years into a PhD? I wasn't sure if you could transfer out of one masters program to another one and keep your progress (but hey, what do I know?). I feel relatively prepared for the masters program, but for a PhD? It just seems so daunting. I'll be more comfortable with it after the masters I hope! Also, as an aside, I really like the point you made about "two years of financial stability". I was blessed to have my folks help me pay for undergraduate school, but graduate school is all me. The last thing I want is to go to school while constantly worrying about the looming 50k+ debt over my head that will start accruing interest once I graduate. Ill be beyond happy attending GA Southern, but if I accept there and then Case Western, Miami (OH), or UGA offer me a spot in their masters program with, oh, a 15k-20k assistantship, it's not going to feel all that good, ya know? Either way, the fact that I get to even go to school this fall is beyond exciting - can't wait!


By “trading up”, I mean that you could finish the masters at GA Southern and then enter a PhD program elsewhere. For example, I am about to finish a masters degree at one institution (not very reputable but a nice place in my point of view) and will be starting my first semester at Texas A&M starting this fall. Many of my professors at my current institution advised me to finish elsewhere since post docs are usually difficult to get (nobody has managed to snag one from my current institution in quite a few years) and getting a first job in academia right out of the PhD can be particularly rough for those who come from lesser known graduate programs. I actually entered the PhD program at my current institution and I decided to finished a masters and transfer out to another PhD program in order to finish with a degree with a stronger reputation behind it (as did a few others in my current institution). Georgia southern could very well be a great place to prepare yourself for the future and so could the others that you listed so no worries if GA southern ends up being your only offer at this time.

kanep96
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:00 am

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby kanep96 » Fri Apr 19, 2019 4:56 pm

DiscoVolante wrote:If you get written release then declining after the fact jives with the 4/15 resolution and I'm sure that terminal master's programs get that often. You should feel good about your prospects either way! Congrats!


Thanks nice to hear. Thank you! It make sense. If I accept their offer to join the program and then end up pulling out soon after, I would imagine it wouldnt be too surprising to them since it's so late and they only gave me a week to decide. And I'd figure it wouldn't be harmful to my academic career at all either. So when you want to pull yourself out of a program after accepting an offer you need a written release, then? Would you happen to know if that process is all that tedious? Or is it more of a "sign this paper, and youre free to go"-type of deal, since I wouldn't have taken any classes yet?

riffraff11235
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Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2019 5:28 pm

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby riffraff11235 » Fri Apr 19, 2019 5:09 pm

Is anyone else still waiting on responses? It's 4 days past the deadline and I still haven't gotten an official decision from UIUC after being waitlisted. I even sent them an email yesterday....

kanep96
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:00 am

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby kanep96 » Fri Apr 19, 2019 7:16 pm

davis7e wrote:By “trading up”, I mean that you could finish the masters at GA Southern and then enter a PhD program elsewhere. For example, I am about to finish a masters degree at one institution (not very reputable but a nice place in my point of view) and will be starting my first semester at Texas A&M starting this fall. Many of my professors at my current institution advised me to finish elsewhere since post docs are usually difficult to get (nobody has managed to snag one from my current institution in quite a few years) and getting a first job in academia right out of the PhD can be particularly rough for those who come from lesser known graduate programs. I actually entered the PhD program at my current institution and I decided to finished a masters and transfer out to another PhD program in order to finish with a degree with a stronger reputation behind it (as did a few others in my current institution). Georgia southern could very well be a great place to prepare yourself for the future and so could the others that you listed so no worries if GA southern ends up being your only offer at this time.


Ah, okay. Thank you very much for the response - I'm very excited too! In your experience, do people in PhD programs typically start right out of undergrad, at around 22/23 years of age? Thats the one part of things that I am "worried" about. If all goes as planned, I'll start mine when I am 25, and I'm slightly nervous about starting my PhD later than most other folks, and having felt like the time before then was, for lack of better wording, wasted.

davis7e
Posts: 15
Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2018 6:02 pm

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby davis7e » Sat Apr 20, 2019 10:16 am

kanep96 wrote:
davis7e wrote:By “trading up”, I mean that you could finish the masters at GA Southern and then enter a PhD program elsewhere. For example, I am about to finish a masters degree at one institution (not very reputable but a nice place in my point of view) and will be starting my first semester at Texas A&M starting this fall. Many of my professors at my current institution advised me to finish elsewhere since post docs are usually difficult to get (nobody has managed to snag one from my current institution in quite a few years) and getting a first job in academia right out of the PhD can be particularly rough for those who come from lesser known graduate programs. I actually entered the PhD program at my current institution and I decided to finished a masters and transfer out to another PhD program in order to finish with a degree with a stronger reputation behind it (as did a few others in my current institution). Georgia southern could very well be a great place to prepare yourself for the future and so could the others that you listed so no worries if GA southern ends up being your only offer at this time.


Ah, okay. Thank you very much for the response - I'm very excited too! In your experience, do people in PhD programs typically start right out of undergrad, at around 22/23 years of age? Thats the one part of things that I am "worried" about. If all goes as planned, I'll start mine when I am 25, and I'm slightly nervous about starting my PhD later than most other folks, and having felt like the time before then was, for lack of better wording, wasted.


“Non-traditional” grad students (including those who are a bit older) can be found in many departments. At my current institution, there are many grad students in their 30s and 40s. One of the other grad students who is transferring out (and to a very strong program) is either 27 or 28 and I’ve had a professor who started at Princeton about 20 years ago at the age of 25 or 26. Don’t let the timeline of other people discourage you. You may have wasted some time and you can’t go back and change that but you can certainly change how things go from here.

If you are curious, I am 24 and so are three others who are transferring out to another program from my institution. I also met quite a few grad students on my visit at Texas A&M who were in masters programs prior to their attendance so it’s more common than you may think.

ethanmhny
Posts: 21
Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2018 9:41 am

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby ethanmhny » Sat Apr 20, 2019 11:36 am

kanep96 wrote:
davis7e wrote:By “trading up”, I mean that you could finish the masters at GA Southern and then enter a PhD program elsewhere. For example, I am about to finish a masters degree at one institution (not very reputable but a nice place in my point of view) and will be starting my first semester at Texas A&M starting this fall. Many of my professors at my current institution advised me to finish elsewhere since post docs are usually difficult to get (nobody has managed to snag one from my current institution in quite a few years) and getting a first job in academia right out of the PhD can be particularly rough for those who come from lesser known graduate programs. I actually entered the PhD program at my current institution and I decided to finished a masters and transfer out to another PhD program in order to finish with a degree with a stronger reputation behind it (as did a few others in my current institution). Georgia southern could very well be a great place to prepare yourself for the future and so could the others that you listed so no worries if GA southern ends up being your only offer at this time.


Ah, okay. Thank you very much for the response - I'm very excited too! In your experience, do people in PhD programs typically start right out of undergrad, at around 22/23 years of age? Thats the one part of things that I am "worried" about. If all goes as planned, I'll start mine when I am 25, and I'm slightly nervous about starting my PhD later than most other folks, and having felt like the time before then was, for lack of better wording, wasted.


If you don't mind sharing, is there something in particular about the way you spent the intervening years that makes you feel like they were wasted? I'm about to start a PhD program this fall at 26; I spent most of the time since graduation working in actuarial science at a job i ended up leaving last year. If I could do it all over again I'd probably apply for grad school straight out of undergrad; at the same time, however, the main reason I feel that way is the fact that I spent all the time I did working in actuarial science, from which I took the lesson that I don't want to work in a cubicle ever again, if I can help it. So I don't look at that time as a waste, because the experience gave me a greater degree of clarity about how I do and don't want to spend the rest of my life.

And also, if you don't find that argument convincing, I really don't think starting grad school in your mid-20s rather than your early 20s is all that unusual. And even if I'm wrong about that, it'd be a very silly thing to judge someone for, in my opinion.

kanep96
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:00 am

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby kanep96 » Sun Apr 21, 2019 1:29 am

davis7e wrote:“Non-traditional” grad students (including those who are a bit older) can be found in many departments. At my current institution, there are many grad students in their 30s and 40s. One of the other grad students who is transferring out (and to a very strong program) is either 27 or 28 and I’ve had a professor who started at Princeton about 20 years ago at the age of 25 or 26. Don’t let the timeline of other people discourage you. You may have wasted some time and you can’t go back and change that but you can certainly change how things go from here.

If you are curious, I am 24 and so are three others who are transferring out to another program from my institution. I also met quite a few grad students on my visit at Texas A&M who were in masters programs prior to their attendance so it’s more common than you may think.



Thanks for the insight! Appreciate it. "Wasted" time was the wrong word. I took a year off, I guess, and didnt go to school at all. However, I did get a nice job, and by the time I go to school in August, my undergrad payments will be done and I will be debt free! Yippee! So, it wasnt a waste persay, just not really one that was actively advancing my academic career which, in the grand scheme of things, academia necessarily need to be the first thing on my mind 24/7 anyway. Not being in school for the first time in 20 years, and getting a taste of what life has been like in the industry has been interesting. And if I had gone to school last fall, I would still have a lot of undergad debt! Its the little things that make my "off year" worthwhile, I guess.

kanep96
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Joined: Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:00 am

Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby kanep96 » Sun Apr 21, 2019 2:17 am

ethanmhny wrote: If you don't mind sharing, is there something in particular about the way you spent the intervening years that makes you feel like they were wasted? I'm about to start a PhD program this fall at 26; I spent most of the time since graduation working in actuarial science at a job i ended up leaving last year. If I could do it all over again I'd probably apply for grad school straight out of undergrad; at the same time, however, the main reason I feel that way is the fact that I spent all the time I did working in actuarial science, from which I took the lesson that I don't want to work in a cubicle ever again, if I can help it. So I don't look at that time as a waste, because the experience gave me a greater degree of clarity about how I do and don't want to spend the rest of my life.

And also, if you don't find that argument convincing, I really don't think starting grad school in your mid-20s rather than your early 20s is all that unusual. And even if I'm wrong about that, it'd be a very silly thing to judge someone for, in my opinion.


I guess it was just due to me comparing myself to others and, in a way, feeling less qualified/more inferior to them. A strange and backwards way of thinking, I know, but thats how it is, unfortunately. I mentioned it in the above post, but my off year had a lot of positives. I didnt mention the job I got (and still have), but it is a Process Engineer position that I enjoy, but, like you, it made me wish I was doing something a bit different. So all things considered, it was a productive year for me on the mental end of things, but seeing people complete my goals earlier than me makes me feel inadequate, even though I know I shouldnt think of it like that.

So yeah, "wasted" is the wrong word, for sure. A better way of putting it would be to say that I "stalled" for a year, maybe? The year was still good, and I had a nice year off from school to de-stress and earn money as a real life working adult and pay off all of my school loans. But it just feels like the time I have in life would've been spent more efficiently if I had been able to get into a school last year. Thank you for the encouragement - means a lot! Your post-undergrad experience seems to relate to mine in some key ways and it makes it nice to hear that there's nothing at all to be too worried about from someone who has been in a similar boat as me and had similar thoughts.

gentzen
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Re: Fall 2019 Sweat Thread

Postby gentzen » Sun Apr 21, 2019 2:05 pm

kanep96 wrote:
davis7e wrote:By “trading up”, I mean that you could finish the masters at GA Southern and then enter a PhD program elsewhere. For example, I am about to finish a masters degree at one institution (not very reputable but a nice place in my point of view) and will be starting my first semester at Texas A&M starting this fall. Many of my professors at my current institution advised me to finish elsewhere since post docs are usually difficult to get (nobody has managed to snag one from my current institution in quite a few years) and getting a first job in academia right out of the PhD can be particularly rough for those who come from lesser known graduate programs. I actually entered the PhD program at my current institution and I decided to finished a masters and transfer out to another PhD program in order to finish with a degree with a stronger reputation behind it (as did a few others in my current institution). Georgia southern could very well be a great place to prepare yourself for the future and so could the others that you listed so no worries if GA southern ends up being your only offer at this time.


Ah, okay. Thank you very much for the response - I'm very excited too! In your experience, do people in PhD programs typically start right out of undergrad, at around 22/23 years of age? Thats the one part of things that I am "worried" about. If all goes as planned, I'll start mine when I am 25, and I'm slightly nervous about starting my PhD later than most other folks, and having felt like the time before then was, for lack of better wording, wasted.



It's all about your personal narrative. I'll be 38 this fall when I start my PhD program. I had the "benefit" of wasting my life before I got a BS and MS, so I had the past 7 years to craft a strong academic history that put my 20's into an entirely different perspective. Now people tend to see me as a mature, experienced, and wrll-rounded.




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