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PhD admissions - parent experience :)

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Replies to: PhD admissions - parent experience :)

  • LanaHereLanaHere Registered User Posts: 638 Member
    True @iglooo .. Maybe it was accidentally left out? My friend is a Math teacher at a local University and he said the same thing.
  • surfcitysurfcity Registered User Posts: 1,683 Senior Member
    Wow this thread is very helpful although making me nervous for S, who is not nervous at all. He will land on his feet wherever. I never knew the PhD process could be so political and/or burdensome!
  • ihs76ihs76 Registered User Posts: 1,791 Senior Member
    @Iglooo, true that. Had not noticed it before. Obviously, the doc is written by a Physics prof for physics grad apps so certainly would not look at it as more than that.

    Yes, Math subject GRE is required by most, although not all, worthwhile PhD programs in math.

    @surfcity, yes, a very stressful process. In some ways, more so than college apps in that the decisions can come on almost any day...at least for me as DS was on the bubble both times he went through the process...
  • Mom2aphysicsgeekMom2aphysicsgeek Registered User Posts: 3,272 Senior Member
    @ihs76 Thanks for posting that link. My son will be taking the pgre this spring for fall applications. I'm sending him the link.
  • intparentintparent Registered User Posts: 26,664 Senior Member
    @Mom2aphysicsgeek, send him these as well, both specific to Physics:

    https://www.gradschoolshopper.com/gradschool/

    http://www.physicsgre.com/

    And here is another general set of chat forums that can be helpful, although they are not as active as CC:

    http://forum.thegradcafe.com/
  • Mom2aphysicsgeekMom2aphysicsgeek Registered User Posts: 3,272 Senior Member
    @intparent Thank you!
  • rosered55rosered55 Registered User Posts: 1,876 Senior Member
    First rejection today for my daughter. Sigh.
  • yauponreduxyauponredux Registered User Posts: 308 Member
    edited January 31
    I'm sorry, @rosered55. Hope it wasn't her favorite program. My D is still interviewing for PhD programs (no offers yet, and it will be several weeks before she is done with the interview stage). Here's to an acceptance for your D soon!
  • cobratcobrat Registered User Posts: 10,895 Senior Member
    First rejection today for my daughter. Sigh.

    @rosered55

    Don't lose heart.

    Competition is exceedingly stiff and the rejection may likely have more to do with level of competition, institutional issues, etc than your D's stats or merits as an aspiring scholar.

    One older college classmate who ended up getting accepted by HYPSMCC level school for a PhD in Chemistry only did so after being completely shut out of all PhD programs...including the one he ended getting accepted to for 4 straight years.
  • rosered55rosered55 Registered User Posts: 1,876 Senior Member
    I think the program might have been her favorite but it's also, I think, one of the very hardest to get into. I'm realistic about the level of competition but it still hurts to see her sad.
  • ScipioScipio Super Moderator Posts: 8,260 Super Moderator
    When I applied to PhD programs it was pre-internet, so everything was done by snail mail. I mailed out all my seven applications on a Monday and I got my first rejection back on the following Thursday. I was so offended! Did they even read my application?

    In the end I was rejected by five of the schools and accepted by two. I picked my favorite between those two and never looked back.

    It only takes one acceptance. After one acceptance all the rejections don't matter. A friend of mine (an older student) is currently in a PhD program. She applied to a half dozen or so schools and got only one acceptance. But that's all it takes. She's currently doing great; ironically she is in the same university that rejected me so quickly all those years ago.
  • surfcitysurfcity Registered User Posts: 1,683 Senior Member
    My S is still waiting to hear something from one of the 12 schools he applied to. Very nerve-wracking for me, as I don't want to bug him at all but I doubt he will tell us anything unless he gets an acceptance.
  • juilletjuillet Super Moderator Posts: 10,524 Super Moderator
    @intparent subject is psych, which I would have expected to be more artsy/casual, but gradcafe posts on the topic made me reconsider. Maybe conservative suit with a statement necklace? I want her to feel comfortable and confident with what she wears so she can focus on more important things!

    Psych is definitely not artsy-casual. If she's going to an interview she should wear a suit, or at least slacks or a skirt and a nice top/sweater. It doesn't have to be super conservative but it should be nice and businessy.
    DS is a CS major, who is being encouraged to go for a PhD by PhD students and faculty, and also has reason to think that he'd be offered quite lucrative employment if he opts for industry. He feels that the pressure of pursuing acceptance into a PhD program while at the same time traveling for job interviews would either burn him out or force him to do a poor job on one or both of the pursuits.

    I think if he's uncertain about getting a PhD, then he should go work for at least a few years and allow the idea to develop more and explore it.

    PhD students and faculty are almost always going to try and encourage a strong undergrad to get a PhD. That's really all that the vast majority of them know - by and large, they may have never worked in another industry before, so in their mindset the smart and capable go get PhDs and do research. But there are lots of other really rewarding and satisfying things that a smart, capable person can do besides that.
  • cobratcobrat Registered User Posts: 10,895 Senior Member
    I think if he's uncertain about getting a PhD, then he should go work for at least a few years and allow the idea to develop more and explore it.

    PhD students and faculty are almost always going to try and encourage a strong undergrad to get a PhD. That's really all that the vast majority of them know - by and large, they may have never worked in another industry before, so in their mindset the smart and capable go get PhDs and do research. But there are lots of other really rewarding and satisfying things that a smart, capable person can do besides that.

    Agreed for the most part.

    However, not sure I agree about the part of PhD students encouraging strong undergrads to pursue PhDs. IME, PhD students even back in the '90s were just as likely to strongly discourage undergrad students from pursuing the PhD as encourage....especially if the student concerned is vacillating between working and doing the PhD.

    As for the last sentence, that's right! An older cousin who graduated from a Top 10 EE PhD program and worked on the tenure-track/as tenured Prof foe a decade left academia to co-found an engineering tech startup which has been successful for the last 10+ years. One reason he cited for leaving was in his experience, engineering research/technology they work with in his field is ~7 years behind that of what's being carried out/used in the private sector.
  • AboutTheSameAboutTheSame Registered User Posts: 2,273 Senior Member
    Apologies if this has been mentioned already [I leafed through the pages quickly], but the grad cafe [https://thegradcafe.com/] is a good source for information on what departments at what schools have sent out offers. D was/is in Classics and her offers [plus fellowship info and invitations to visit] came in late January; the rejections came later, and I expect most of those programs were using an informal wait list.
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