I went to UChicago last weekend for my first round of grad school interviews. It went great, and the grad school environment seems like a great fit for me. However, I’m going to spare details on the schools until I’ve finished all interviews and have started to hear back about whether or not I’ve been accepted to them.
I am now sitting in the Sheraton Hotel in Dallas. The UTSW interviews are tomorrow, and the room they’ve put me up in is SWANK. Probably one of the biggest rooms I’ve stayed in. Ever.
On that note, I want to officially declare the biology grad school interview process to be the most amazing experience that a college grad can go through. It contrasts so strongly to the application processes of other educational programs (law/med/business/etc school) that there is danger of being blinded. After a pretty painless paper application, those applicants who get past the first round are invited to interview at the schools, for which the school pays for airfare and all expenses while the applicant is there. And they throw booze and food at you at every turn.
The interviews themselves are great, since they are more of a conversation about science than anything else. And I love talking about science. The researchers I talked to at Uchicago are doing some really cool things that were fascinating to hear about, and I expect to hear of many more interesting projects before my interviews are done.
My interview schedule is UChicago (done last week), UTSW (done tomorrow), Duke (next weekend) and WashU (early March). While it’s great to spend this time visiting schools and talking to interesting people who share my nerdiness levels and love for biology, the 4-day work-weeks are problematic. I can’t really get any experiments started, though it’s nice to have some time to catch up on data analysis.