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121: A Teenager Goes to Grad School feat. Julia Nepper, PhD

You’ve gotten this far, which means you have probably read the episode title by now. And that means you have questions. So… many… questions….

Let’s answer a few of them right up front.

First, if you want to enter graduate school at age seventeen, you should probably start college around age eleven. That’s what this week’s guest Dr. Julia Nepper did.

Second, you should know that even though Julia’s educational biography is unusual, the lessons she learned along the way will feel familiar to every graduate student.

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115: PhDown Under – 4 Ways a PhD is Better in Australia

It’s no secret that post-secondary education is a rough road to walk. Graduate students rack up debt for the privilege of working long hours for an unpredictable number of years with very little faculty support.

Well, that might be true in much of the Northern hemisphere, but in a land where mammals lay eggs and snakes eat crocodiles, all bets are off.

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114: Grad School Should Have a Time Limit

Here’s a controversial idea: what if graduate school finished on a predictable schedule the way (checks notes) every other academic training program does!

Since kindergarten, your education has had fixed milestones. You knew it would take 12 years to graduate from high school, 4 for college, and 2 for a masters or an associates degree.

Even medical school takes a predictable 4 years, with an additional 3-6 for residency and fellowship, depending on the field.

So why does graduate school take between 4 and 10 years, with a lot of discretion, uncertainty, and mental anguish in between?

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