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129. Grad School Rejection: Why it Happens and How to Get Accepted

 I feel a little disheartened because I’ve been rejected from many of the places I applied to and haven’t heard back from a number of others. Is it worth it to hold out hope for the ones that haven’t sent out updates?

 I have been rejected from 5 schools and am expecting 3 more rejections soon enough without any invitations for interview. I’ve had my time in regret and disappointment and I’m now thinking about what to do next. 

Should I just give up at the thought of me obtaining a PhD? I feel like a mess right now.

These excerpts are from just three of the many messages we received this year from grad school applicants who were moving through the stages of rejection grief.

Some understood it would be an uphill climb, and half-expected the bad news. For others, it was a surprise because they had followed all the advice on how to craft the perfect application.

For everyone, it was disappointing, demoralizing, and confusing – what can I do if I’ve been pushed off the only path I know to a career in science?

This week, we explore the arcane inner workings of an admissions committee, and detail not only WHY you received that rejection letter, but what you can do about it next year.

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106. HelloPhD Guide to Grad School Applications – Acing Your Interview with Dr. Beth Bowman (R)

See our previous episodes in this series:

With most jobs, you’ll need to submit a polished resume along with a handful of ebullient references. Maybe you’ll pass through a phone-screen with HR and then spend 20 minutes with the hiring manager.  

To get into grad school, the interview process will take days.

Grad school interviews often start with a flight to a new city.  You’ll have a casual chat with the grad student assigned to retrieve you from the airport, then meet the fellow candidate with whom you’ll share a hotel room.

The moment you get settled, you’re off to dinner with some faculty, followed by an early bedtime.  That’s because tomorrow morning, you’ll pass through a series of orientation sessions, faculty interviews, a tour of the city, and finally, a late-night out with the current students in the program.

You’ll fly back home the next day, grateful to be sleeping in your own bed.  And just when you get settled, you’ll need to hop on a plane to reach the next school where you’ll start the process again.

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