MS? PhD?

nishir at ohsu.edu nishir at ohsu.edu
Thu Jan 27 12:39:23 EST 1994


In article <2i6l88$2vj at mserv1.dl.ac.uk> igo at biovx1.DNET.NASA.GOV (MEGAN IGO)
writes:
>
> I am a second year grad student in a Molecular biology field.  I have 
>recently (two weeks ago) left my permanent lab for a variety of reasons, 
>most of which resulted from a combination of not really getting the kind 
>of guidance I needed from my advisor and being too intimidated to know 
>how to ask for it without coming across as stupid.  It seemed that the 
>other people in the lab were much more advanced scientifically than I am 
>or will be soon, but I kept feeling as though I should be able to think 
>at the same level with the postdocs and 4th & 5th year grad students.  I 
>now realize that this demand I was placing on myself was unreasonable. 
>	The next decision I have to make is whether to finish this 
>quarter with a Master's and get a job in industry, or to find a new lab 
>and get a PhD, which was my original plan.  I am 25 and have spent 21 of 
>those years in an academic environment, so I really don't even know what 
>the "real world" is like.  I recognize that there are compromises with 
>either decision, such as a limit on earning potential if I leave with an 
>MS, and a limit on how much of my time and my life is mine if I continue 
>with on the PhD track and do the postdoc thing, etc.  I would greatly 
>appreciate input from people out there who have experience in either 
>area (or both!!)
>
>Thanks!
>	Megan            igo at uclabio.bitnet or igo at biovx1.dnet.nasa.gov
>	UCLA Bio Dept
>
If you know what the problem was, and you still have the motivation and
enthusiasm, then fine a more sympathetic advisor and go for the PhD!  If you
find that you are less than completely committed to finishing, then find a job
and take some time off to think about what you really want to do.  It takes
ALOT of work and determination and time and stress to get a PHD and move on up
through the ranks.  Don't do it if you don't want it. It's very competitive out
there.  If you choose to take some time off, you can always get back to grad
school again (and you'll probably do alot better if you're feeling less
ambivalent about things).

Rae Nishi
OHSU
Portland OR



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