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Date: 2010-09-25 09:52 pm (UTC)
lindseykuper: Photo of me outside. (Default)
From: [personal profile] lindseykuper
Several of these resonate with me. Underrepresented minority: check. Artsy-fartsy undergrad school: check. Decided where to apply partly based on bike-friendliness of location: check. Went to best school that would take me (only school that would take me): check. Mysterious qualifying process that doesn't actually evaluate research ability: check. External fellowship: check.

In my case, though, some of these things worked out for the best. My artsy-fartsy undergraduate education taught me how to write, which is pretty damn useful. And the external fellowship I had my first year really helped a lot, because the alternative would have been to teach immediately, and that would have been very difficult (it's unusual for a Ph.D. student to have a research assistantship right off the bat here (which is indicative of a larger problem, discussion of which is beyond the scope of this comment)); as it was, not having to teach gave me time to learn and absorb a lot in my classes, which was really necessary because see above re: artsy-fartsy undergraduate education.
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