Sunday, December 26, 2010

Hunter College it is then.

Some of you might remember that I was rather unsuccessful in securing a place for graduate school last year. Moving out of the Tri-State area is pretty much out of the question for me (personal reasons). This leaves me with only a handful of viable schools to apply to. The ambitious student that I am, I aimed high and applied to only well known universities. I had my eyes set for either UPenn, Stony Brook or Rutgers but unfortunately none of these universities were interested in me. It didn't help that I only applied for PhD programs (in hindsight, I really should have looked into a few Masters program). I realized now that you have higher chances of being accepted to a Masters program compared to most PhD program. Unless, of course, you have a 3.99 GPA or a perfect 4.0 GPA. That, I do not have unfortunately.


"You live and learn" they say, and true to that, this year's graduate school application process is far less stressful than the year before. I knew I should look into both PhD and Masters program again but since those three universities rejected me last year, I opted not to apply to them again. If they don't want you last year ... they probably still don't this year.

I also had pretty shitty GRE scores. I totally abhor standardized tests. I don't know why but I find it really hard to do well in those kinda tests. I took the GRE twice with almost the same results. I was livid. I firmly believe that those scores do not justify me as a student and in refuse to pay hundreds to take yet another stupid GRE exam that I will probably bomb again (Am I the only who thinks that GRE is a get rich scheme?) Anyway, instead of taking yet another GRE exam, I worked around my GRE scores. I looked into schools that's not too rigid with GRE score requirements but instead weigh in on all the achievements you've got as an undergraduate.

Once I got all those criteria straightened out, the only school in the Tri-State area viable for me to even apply to is Hunter College. So, I applied to their Animal Behavior and Conservation (ABC) program. While this is no Anthropology/Primatology program, it is the closest program I found that is still relevant to my interest. I am stoked that one of the faculty, Dr. Diana Reiss, studies self-recognition and theory of mind in animals.

So I got the official letter a few days ago from Hunter's Graduate Admission Office. I've been officially admitted as an MA student for Spring 2011. Huzzah! I can't wait to get back to class after almost 2 years in hiatus. Though I really don't know what to expect being a graduate student in a Psychology department. I have had pretty bad experience with Psychology professors, both at LaGuardia Community College and Queens College ... here's hoping that Hunter is different.

someecards.com - Welcome to grad school. Now bite your lip and grab your ankles.

10 comments:

Zinjanthropus said...

Congrats!

Raymond Ho, FCD said...

Thanks Zinj!

rich lawler said...

Congrats!! Work hard and enjoy.

Raymond Ho, FCD said...

Thanks Rich. Will do!

Ivan said...

Congrats. I now its a pain to deal with grad school. I left grad school in QC since the program I was doing was eventually going to leave me with no career options in the near future. Happy New Years!

Julia said...

Congratulations! and you can always take classes in the Anthropology department. We have 2 new professors for Biological Anthropology and we have 2 great ones who are already there. Best of Luck.

Raymond Ho, FCD said...

Thanks Julia. I do plan on taking classes with Dr. Rothman. What does the 2 new professors focus in?

Clara B. Jones said...

Congratulations on your persistence and on your acceptance. Here's a lesson that I learned as a grad student and post-doc: gain recognition as the #1 student in your departments (Psychology, Anthropology) for being on top of the literature in your specialization(s) and related fields. I can already see that you have a penchant for research with your post on the early Italian primatologist. Suggestion: if you have an opportunity, travel to Cambridge to explore the libraries of the Peabody Museum and, most especially for its treasures, the Library of the Museum of Comparative Zoology. all best, clara b. jones

Clara B. Jones said...

p.s. NEVER think of institution/department(s) as less than first rate. What you put into your education and your relationships with your professors is what you'll get out of them. Also, don't forget about networking. Your blog is a good start.

Raymond Ho, FCD said...

Thanks Clara. I'm actually really excited to start my semester but also can't overcome the nervous feeling I have going into a foreign department.

I've actually been to a Peabody Museum, but it's the one at Yale University in New Haven, CT instead of Cambridge, MA. I've been to the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard. Though most time, I was just there to ogle at bones and taxidermy :)