Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Higher Education Week: Fifteen Things I Learned in Grad School

  1. Everyone who went straight to grad school from undergrad did so because they didn't want to enter the real world yet.

  2. It is much harder to skip class in grad school because every class only has ten people in it.

  3. People in grad school become obsessed with going to conferences and presenting papers. If you do not attend at least one conference every term, you're some sort of strange aboriginal leper.

  4. Going to grad school will make you realize how woefully lacking your undergraduate education was. (You will not notice a thing going from high school to college though).

  5. 95% of people in grad school are bound for academia and tenureland. The other 5% will do something completely unrelated to their degree or become the night clerk at CVS.

  6. There will always be at least one grad school out there willing to subsidize your degree in exchange for an assistantship. People who pay for the whole thing themselves and complain about it didn't try hard enough.

  7. Being a research assistant on a project that's about to be cancelled is like winning the assistantship lottery. You get paid to do absolutely nothing.

  8. People from other countries will outnumber Americans 2 to 1, and they will generally be smarter than we are.

  9. You will hate undergraduate parties as a grad student, because you are old, feeble, and just want to go to bed without hearing a Nickelback cover band in your backyard.

  10. The youngest professors will impress you the most with the amount of knowledge they have compared to you, and the oldest professors will be the most memorable. The ones in the middle are still trying to get tenure and will be forgettable (they probably won't even remember you after you graduate).

  11. Graduate composers are just more grumpy versions of their undergraduate counterparts.

  12. In college, you have to make sure the girls aren't dating someone before you start hitting on them. In grad school, you have to look for wedding rings.

  13. Your undergraduate students will prefer you to their professors, but only because you're almost their contemporaries. Despite this closeness of age, dating your students is still frowned upon.

  14. None of the books in the library will be less than ten years old, but they will be the lynchpin of all your research.

  15. The amount of free time you have in grad school is obscene, and most likely the number one cause of procrastination and not being able to get anything done.

Happy Birthday Carly Williams!

Man lives the American Dream commute
Man with the worst commute
Bartering from a paper clip to a house

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