Saturday, November 15, 2008
How important is location?
I'm going to be spending pretty much all weekend on grad school stuff, wheeee.
Right now, I've got 4 solid lines of communication open to different potential advisors, and I'll be applying to each of their schools. Two of them I'm really excited about, and the other two have a lot of potential (younger faculty members in programs I don't know as much about yet). One of them I would never have found/contacted, but that he's involved in the large research projects going on at the place I work at, and he approached me. But he's a crazy cool guy, very energetic and sharp.
- I have another ~4 people that I had been considering contacting. And I really feel like I shouldn't apply to more than 5, maybe maybe 6, places. Otherwise it's just too much work, and too much time spent interviewing/traveling, with the prospect of having to make even more difficult choices. How to choose the last several people to contact? Gulp. I hate striking up conversations and then turning people down. And right now I'm running a greater than 80% success rate for inquiry emails (# of positive responses encouraging me to apply vs. total number of emails sent). Another reason for not applying to too many schools is that I'm pretty confident that I will be admitted everywhere I apply (maybe I shouldn't be, but I feel good about it). That, and I have some guilt at the thought that if I apply and am accepted to a lot of places, then I'm getting in the way of other really awesome people who would have liked the slots. Ugh.
- There are one or two people who do really awesome work, related to what I do, in some really good institutions. But, the schools are in parts of the country that I don't really want to live in. I feel like this is probably a bad bias, but so far I haven't been able to overcome it. Anyone have any thoughts on this?
Back to the grind stone.