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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2013 8:49 pm 
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Hi there grad students. Can any of you tell me tales of getting taken off the waitlist and getting into your number 1 school? I'm next up on the god damned waitlist and it's killing me!

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2013 11:40 pm 
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I gave the required 2 hr long annual literature review to my group tonight. Most of my coworkers go on to work for pharma companies to make drugs so thats what theyre interested in. I'm so not into that topic so I did a talk about all the chemical additives to fuel and motor oils. The topic is very chemistry-heavy (a postdoc from our group even works in the industry now!) and stuff so it should be interesting but no one thought it was interesting except me. Yet another sign I'm in the wrong area of research. Sometimes I think organic chemists are chemistry snobs.

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2013 11:56 pm 
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j-dub wrote:
Hi there grad students. Can any of you tell me tales of getting taken off the waitlist and getting into your number 1 school? I'm next up on the god damned waitlist and it's killing me!


Aw jdub. That is so stressful! I don't have a story to share but I hope you hear one way or another soon. There are so so many factors that can affect who accepts their admission offers... if you are first on the waitlist and it's only April, I feel like that's a good thing! (Though I guess it depends on how long it's been since your program started sending out offers etc.)

Couroupita, what a bummer. I hate when you put a lot of work into something and then everyone else is like "oh yawn."

I have two exams tomorrow, and I have spent a shiitake ton of studying for the one I probably shouldn't have spent any time on (I was already pretty comfortable with the material) and no time on the one I probably should have spent all my time on (it's material I know but haven't been paying attention to lately). I am so tired of classwork.

So I think this summer I am going to challenge myself to read 16 papers in the field I'm now hoping to do my thesis in, in hopes of having a more solid foundation to start my project from. That's only one a week which is so so doable, especially if I print them all at the beginning and then really make myself stick through the first few.

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:55 am 
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j-dub wrote:
Hi there grad students. Can any of you tell me tales of getting taken off the waitlist and getting into your number 1 school? I'm next up on the god damned waitlist and it's killing me!


I was on the waitlist for my #1 school, and got in! There was maybe a week between being told I was on the waitlist and then being told that space had opened up. A lot of the top students are accepted at like 10,000 different places so the likelihood of spaces opening up is high. (but obviously not assured. I guess it depends on the program)


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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 3:00 pm 
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Good luck on your exams, C&S!! Studying for two in the same day (even the same week!) is tough.

So my husband has gone through two interviews at this company and both were super positive, they said he was a great fit for the job, etc, and he was going to the first member of their data science team. They basically said he had the job but had to sort out budgeting stuff. Now there's radio silence. He waited a week, emailed hr to ask what's up, they promised him an answer. No answer and another 10 days of radio silence. So I guess they couldn't find the money to hire him on?? It's just so frustrating. He did a lot of work preparing supplemental info documents they requested (research summary) in addition to his CV, spent valuable research time studying up on the science the company does, etc. At least dont keep us hanging. Why did they even advertise for employees if theres a hiring freeze? Now he has to write his thesis and defend by mid-May, so there's no time to job hunt. If the interview process takes months like this one did, we will have only my meager income come June and even that is getting pulled after August. Sorry to rant like this, I just feel so stressed dealing with my crazy advisor and department, the drama-llamas in our families, trying to change fields, and all this financiall instability. It's awesome to have a space to vent it all!!

On the more hilarious side, I brought tostada ingredients for our group meeting dinner (presenter has to provide dinner for the whole group). I had to instruct half of my group how to make a tostada, including my 72-year old advisor. Like, seriously??? How do people not understand tostadas? My husband thinks it's because most of those people are very privileged and have never had to eat budget food. I'm not so sure about that but regardless I'd think a room of PhD's could figure it out. :-P

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 3:20 pm 
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Had to attend a formal meeting regarding possible academic misconduct, as a witness. I was a TA invigilating the exam. forking waste of time. Inclined to never report suspicious activity during exams again.


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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 3:20 pm 
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Aw dang C. Huge sympathy to your husband... A similar thing happened to me a few years ago-- 2 great interviews, a verbal guarantee, and then after several weeks my contact admitted their funding was cut and they couldn't hire me. It was so shitty at the time.

Who doesn't know how to eat a forking tostada!

I just got out of the first exam and I think it was okay not great. One problem, I know I was using the right formulas but I was supposed to get an x = y and yeah my x and y didn't line up for reasons I have not yet ascertained... Maybe I squared 19 wrong (though I checked it about four times because I know I am prone to arithmetic errors). Ugh my kingdom for an exam I can use a calculator on.

The second exam is the one I haven't studied for so I'm about to go cram! I just ran into one of my project partners for that class and she was like "you study yet? No, me neither. Time to cram!" Ha ha ha ha ha.

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 3:38 pm 
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Good luck on the cram session! There's an odd comfort when you know you're not the only one in that position, haha!

I don't have exams like that anymore but when I did and the question was one of the x=y sort I swear I couldn't ever do it under pressure. And the few times I did I'd put a big forking box and smiley face around the last line of the proof or whatever because I was just so relieved. Partial credit flicks the weasel!

Yeah I guess I will never understand business. Why even bother to interview if you don't have the funds? A bigger company, ok, maybe they just want some names to keep on file but a small start-up? Blah.

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 7:28 pm 
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I don't even know what a tostada is :(

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:12 pm 
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Woah, really? OK, I stand corrected! But anyone who lives in CA, I hope, would know what it is.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tostada_(tortilla)

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Fri Apr 19, 2013 12:30 am 
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Moon, are you Canadian? Because I think Canadians definitely get a pass on tostadas.

(there's not much to it though! You'll figure it out if the situation ever comes up, ha ha.)

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Fri Apr 19, 2013 6:29 am 
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Yeah, definitely Canadian. Yay for the tostada pass! Now I want tostadas though!

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Fri Apr 19, 2013 12:28 pm 
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These annotations are taking forever! I've spent more than a year annotating 4.5 hours of video (not even all of it, just the quotes) and I'm still not done. I had a meeting with my supervisors today, and then asked me to change one of the definitions, so I have to go back through every file and add this missing thing ---- that's 700 things! If I were more focused I may have been able to finish today, but man, I'm so discouraged that I'm 2 months into my third year and am still spinning my wheels on this annotation bullshiitake. I want to finish this part of the project up and move on already.

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Fri Apr 19, 2013 3:06 pm 
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lutin wrote:
These annotations are taking forever! I've spent more than a year annotating 4.5 hours of video (not even all of it, just the quotes) and I'm still not done. I had a meeting with my supervisors today, and then asked me to change one of the definitions, so I have to go back through every file and add this missing thing ---- that's 700 things! If I were more focused I may have been able to finish today, but man, I'm so discouraged that I'm 2 months into my third year and am still spinning my wheels on this annotation bullshiitake. I want to finish this part of the project up and move on already.


Ok, dudes. I just finished those 700 annotations. Now I have to write my supervisors to ask if I did it in the right way, or if I have to re-do it (again) (with a different definition, because maybe the one I understood was wrong).

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Fri Apr 19, 2013 3:08 pm 
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High five lutin! .... I really hope they don't make you do it again.

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Fri Apr 19, 2013 3:14 pm 
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coldandsleepy wrote:
High five lutin! .... I really hope they don't make you do it again.


Agreed.

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 7:20 pm 
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It's Saturday night.

I'm writing a massive paper.

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 8:50 pm 
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fork, I'm so bored.

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 9:00 pm 
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i think i'm going to apply for a grad program next year, a master's in art education. anyone here in anything like that?

i am working on my portfolio right now... i'm starting a preschooler art workshop series next month, and getting a lot of interest in it. i started it really only to build the documentation of my teaching process and get some good material for my portfolio, but frankly, i might be able to make a little business of it.

what do people think about grad school with a young family? i'll have a 4 year old and a 2 year old when i start.


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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 2013 9:10 pm 
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Wow, lutin! 700 annotations is wild!

Starrynight, I totally sympathize. Having to do papers on Sat night is the worst! I have stuff I should be doing tonight but I'm being lazy.

LB, how exciting! The only people I know grad school with young kids are dudes, and their wives pretty much do all the work. Which is why I'm totally in awe of C&S!

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Sun Apr 21, 2013 1:11 am 
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couroupita wrote:
The only people I know grad school with young kids are dudes, and their wives pretty much do all the work. Which is why I'm totally in awe of C&S!


Yeah. C&S is my grad school hero.

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Sun Apr 21, 2013 4:24 pm 
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It's a beautiful spring day! I'll go spend it in the library!

Thought no one ever . . .

except a grad student.

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Mon Apr 22, 2013 1:22 am 
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omgomgomgomg

I am on the verge of finishing this effing master's degree and the pressure and excitement and fear keep piling up and all I literally want to do is spin around in a circle and laugh hysterically, but I need to do work!

I got way behind this term and pretty much bombed my portfolio course. I barely passed, but my professor has offered to let me revise to improve it a bit. To be honest, at this point I don't give a shiitake about grades...I just want to be done.

But I'm still working on another course. I have only today to finish and then I have to leave it up to the universe. I'll know probably by the end of this week if all that money was a waste or if I finally got it done. I am losing my shiitake!


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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 10:32 pm 
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Ha ha ha, thanks guys... I keep trying to come to this thread to post advice & encouragement to LB but, amazingly, I haven't found the time.

So, I do a lot of directly comparing my first trip through grad school (2 pre-kid years in a phd program) to my current trip (I'm in the second semester of a 2 year MS program and have 2 smallish children). Undeniably, having kids makes some aspects very different in a way they might not be if I was still non-kid-having.

The bad stuff first: finding time to do everything is hard. I am the sort of person who likes to sit down and do something 'til it's done. Before I had kids, this meant that I had days where I would sit down and write code for 12 hours straight without eating/going to the bathroom/talking to other humans/thinking about anything but working. Super healthy? No. But as long as I could make myself put the time in, the time was there to use. Yes, I had my fair share of bad time management induced necessary all nighters... But they were avoidable. The time was there.

With kids, finding any solid stretch of time to do anything is harder. I cram work in everywhere. I try to get the kids to nap at the same time so I can work while they nap. I occasionally put a movie on for E in the afternoon so I can squeeze out a couple more hours of work, something that makes me feel like both a shitty parent and a shitty student. I work at the breakfast table on Saturday and Sunday mornings and if we drive anywhere on the weekend (been doing a lot of short hikes lately), I work at least one way.

But my primary time to work is after they go to sleep. Every night-- including weekends-- I work a minimum of an hour after they're in bed. Most nights it is more like 2-3 hours. This semester I'm averaging one day every other week where I have to pull an all nighter.

And WITH all of this time-cramming, I am making scholastic ends meet.

If I could shake first round grad school me by the shoulders-- tell her to spend a little less time playing video games, a little more time on her math homework-- I would.

That's really pretty much all of the bad.

The good: maybe you guessed from my first paragraph under bad, but I can be... Very single minded. Some people have described me as a workaholic. That's not exactly right, I can be lazy as hell about some things. But things that hold my interest at all, really hold my interest. When I was just a student, that was my whole life. When I was just a parent, that was my whole life. (I remember thinking after E was born, "this is why new parents can't STFU about their babies-- they literally cannot think about anything else.") It is reeeeeally not healthy for me to fall into this sort of single channel situation... Single point of failure and all. When things started to go downhill with my first trip through grad school, I pretty much became unhinged. That was my ONE thing and I was sucking at it! I don't even want to talk about how dark of a place I was in.

Having two things that are both incredible priorities to me means that I necessarily have to split my crazy intensity across a minimum of 2 channels. It also means that if one is going badly, I can lean on the other. For me, this is really important.

I am also way better at time management now. (In undergrad, I addressed both the single-focus and the bad time management thing by being involved in a billion extracurriculars... That functioned a lot like having kids for me really.)

A really priceless thing is that I've become a lot more blunt and assertive. I'm just less able to tolerate other people's bull shiitake; now that I know what a 3 year old's behavior looks like firsthand, I'm less willing to accept that kind of behavior from a grownup. While it likely has not earned me a ton of new friends, it has made group work more tolerable and less stressful.

Maybe the best thing is that now I have a way of interacting with other adults again that's not kid-centric. I don't know. IRL, I hated being the person who had nothing to talk about but her kid. It made me feel self-conscious and stupid. That is probably more about me than anything else, but I am so relieved to now also be able to talk about at least a couple of other things.

Miscellaneous: if you are taking a full course load, remember that your school is probably really considering that to be full-time work for you. Do you have enough childcare for that? E & M go to daycare 3 days a week-- 2 of those I'm on campus all day, 1 is just a work day. Having that 1 work day is the only way I can manage it.

Think that's it... Sorry if I'm rambling, I'm on my phone on the bus. Hopefully you get the gist: I think it is so, so worthwhile to do grad school as a parent if that's what you want/it will further your career/etc. It IS hard work, but for me, it is so so fulfilling and right.

Good luck LB! Keep us update!

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 Post subject: Re: Graduate Students of the PPK, Assemble!
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 3:21 pm 
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Gosh, I'm just feeling so frustrated right now. So last Friday that tech company emailed my husband and asked him to solve a problem, basically they gave him some index scores based on some data set and asked him to work backwards to figure out the algorithm or whatever that they used to come up with their results. He spent all Friday, most of the weekend, and Monday working it out (and found a pretty nifty way doing it) and writing up a report. They got back to him today asking if he could solve it a different way. Argh.

I know they're considering hiring him on full-time, not as an intern, and they want to see if he is competent. But seriously, this is a bad time. He's got 3 weeks to write his thesis, submit a paper, and prepare his thesis defense. So basically it means all the other stressors of life, like paying bills, taking care of the dog, laundry, groceries, are falling on me at a time where I'm working crazy hours not sure if my advisor is going to let me graduate. Also I found out yesterday that the other girl in our group in my year is getting to defend in Sept. Even though I have more papers than her. what the fizzle.

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