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Looking for Alternative to Graduate School

crazycruxcrazycrux Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
Hello all,
When I first went to college, I rushed off, meaning that I did not spend the extra time necessary to get a good SAT score (I had sub-par performance in high school due to a disregard for academics), and I did not pick a good college. Furthermore, I picked a degree at random and have moved laterally in my field of study for a while now. I am currently studying Biochemistry and Mol. Cellular Bio, and have a 3.46 GPA overall (likely to go down after this semester). I have been forced with the incontrovertible fact that I likely will not be going to graduate school, nor am I likely to do well in it if I do attend anyhow. So, I have to ask the question: what next? I will graduate with a bachelor's in biochemistry, but this is a preliminary degree, not a professional certification. I have some undergraduate research experience, and have been to national scientific conferences with my research poster, so I suppose that counts for something. Anyways, what do you all think? Am I simply going through some self-doubt, or should I start looking elsewhere, for a new game to play - so to speak.

Replies to: Looking for Alternative to Graduate School

  • crazycruxcrazycrux Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
    A little additive information: I have a hard time getting myself to work hard and setting myself to a strong, rigid schedule, which is another reason that I have decided that graduate school is not for me. My roommate, who knows me very well, has told me he thinks I am most capable of graduate school, and my second roommate has concurred. Am I suffering impostor syndrome? I am trying to, as honestly as possible, evaluate what I should do next. Please give me the best insight that you all can.
  • CheddarcheeseMNCheddarcheeseMN Registered User Posts: 3,211 Senior Member
    edited April 2018
    You haven’t said what you want to do. Work in science, work in business, be a teacher.?
  • jym626jym626 Registered User Posts: 57,227 Senior Member
    Look into a lab job and then rethink grad school later?
  • happymomof1happymomof1 Registered User Posts: 29,291 Senior Member
    Why do you think you need to go to grad school at all? Why are you accepting the evaluations of your roommates? Are they PhD candidates? Ask your professors and the PI for your research project what they think about your capabilities.

    Nowhere is it written that you have to go to grad school. Lots of people take their undergrad degrees in biochem and go out into the world and get jobs. Make an appointment at the career center on your campus and start finding out what jobs are out there for you.
  • crazycruxcrazycrux Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
    Originally, the plan was to join academia (biochemical research), but with my current grades and work ethic, it does not look like I have the capabilities to do so. Furthermore, if I perform a lab job, would that increase my chances at grad school? It's not like I get GPA credits for working industry.
  • crazycruxcrazycrux Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
    edited April 2018
    I was just wondering if a biochemistry degree is flexible in real-world application. Originally I wanted to go to graduate school because the academic side of things really interested me. I do not believe I am capable to do this anymore.
    I will ask the professor that I am doing research with if he thinks I am capable.
    Thanks for the advice.
  • donnaleighgdonnaleighg Registered User Posts: 1,562 Senior Member
    Do you have any coursework or experience in computer programming, statistics, data analysis, etc.? That, along with your knowledge in biochemistry, can often lead to your first job, and from there the name of your major becomes unimportant.
  • crazycruxcrazycrux Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
    Yes. I have taken statistics and have used it in applications such as genetics and my undergraduate research. Perhaps I will look there for job openings.
  • ClassicRockerDadClassicRockerDad Registered User Posts: 6,365 Senior Member
    You will have a bachelors degree. You majored in Biochemistry. You do not have to do anything related to biochemistry, nor should you try to if you aren't liking it. There are many professional jobs that require a bachelors degree of any kind. This requirement is simply for maturity. For example, you would have the perfect degree to be a college admissions officer.

    This is 2018 and the economy is very good. Look for any professional job and find one that you will like.
  • NorthernMom61NorthernMom61 Registered User Posts: 4,056 Senior Member
    It sounds like working in your field for a while would help provide you with experience on which to base future decisions. Go to your schools career center for job hunt help (openings, resume, interview practice, etc.). It's also not an all or nothing open and shut situation, you might pursue graduate school some other time in your future if you find you want or need to.
  • juilletjuillet Super Moderator Posts: 12,724 Super Moderator
    Academics have the opposite of rigid schedules, so I don't think a dislike of a rigid schedule is a problem. Lots of people procrastinate or have difficulty motivating themselves in some areas - academics are a diverse and varied bunch. And I had a 3.42 in college and ended up getting a PhD (straight from undergrad) and working in research. A 3.46 doesn't disqualify you from grad school forever.

    A 3.46 with your background would certainly qualify you for master's programs, which could be a stepping stone to getting a doctoral degree. Depending on the kind of research you've done, you may also be competitive for some PhD programs as well. What's your major GPA? If that's considerably higher than your cumulative one, that can help a lot too. You could also take a few years to work as a research assistant, research associate, or lab manager to help prepare you for a doctoral program.
This discussion has been closed.