I need your advice about transferring

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Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Aug 16, 2008 2:24 am

I need your advice about transferring

Post by quintessence » Sat Aug 16, 2008 4:10 am

I really need your advice about whether I should change my school or not.I know that this is very long, but please read it.Sorry if my English is not very good!
I am an international student(girl) and this year is my second year of PhD in a well-known private school with an average physics program(top 40). I have two problems with my school: 1-I hate the city that I am in it (now I can see how much it is good to be in a safe and small town) 2-I really like both theoretical particle physics and cosmology(especially the intersection of them) but nobody in our department works on these areas, most of the people here are doing experimental works. Before applying to this department I thought that I want to do Gravity or cosmology but i doubted, during the last semester of my undergrad,after doing a project on cosmology, I found that I really like it, at that time I knew that nobody in this department works in theoretical cosmology, but because this university was the only one that I applied to it(because I didn't have GRE general and this was the only department that told me we will review your application without GRE)I accepted their offer with the hope that I will like the work of one the professors here. and know after studying QFT I'm sure that my real interest is intersection of particle physics and cosmology. I know that it seems unethical to change your university when you are in a PhD program, but I really don't like what they are doing here.
This summer I was a RA in a high energy theory group, the Prof. that I am working with him is a very nice guy and very famous in his field, with enough fund, but after 3 months working in his group I really don't feel that I like it, because it is more nuclear physics.(I like to do both QFT and GR in my research). I have already told him that I'm not sure if I want to continue my work with him or not and he knows that I like to do particle or cosmology, but he said that if I continue my work with him, I can choose another prof. as my second advisor.
That's a really long story.Thare are some other things that I can explain about them, but then my post will be too long and nobody will read it, but if you want I can explain. I am really confused, I don't know what should I do :?:
Thanks for reading it!

Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Aug 17, 2008 10:31 pm

Re: I need your advice about transferring

Post by jdgates » Sun Aug 17, 2008 10:59 pm

There's nothing unethical about it in the slightest; it happens quite frequently. The trick for you now is that (obviously) you're stuck for at least a semester. In the tier you're talking about, many schools may accept you to start next spring; you'll just have to poke around programs' websites, and ask if you're unsure.

Realize that there's no such thing as "transfer application" with grad programs as there are for undergrad; you'll just apply to the program as a regular applicant. Your existing credit will likely not transfer, but your new program may let you out of comparable requirements in their programs; again, you'll just have to ask.

The trick will be explaining in your statement why it is that you want to move, but just explain that you can't pursue your research interests in your current program, and how it is that you know that you're interested in the program wherever you're applying. I wouldn't go on in detail about what you don't like about where you are--get past that quickly, and spend the bulk of your statement as you would if you weren't transferring.

You should also get a letter of rec. from someone you're working with now; explain why you want to move, and it sounds like he's not going to give you any trouble about it.

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