Post college grads come here

Graduated 2009, finally got motivated enough to start grad school back in 2012. Business Admin for me with a track to becoming a CPA. Currently working for the state government (so we get paid right now unlike those feds).
 
I really do not know what to say.

I graduated with a BS in Cell and Molecular Biology. I can understand papers pertaining to those subjects in scientific journals as I have a firm grasp of the terminology and laboratory techniques involved in those fields. I retained much of my scientific knowledge and am quite familiar with many biochemical pathways, but I am lummox in the laboratory (and elsewhere in life) so I cannot reliably perform even the simplest laboratory procedures. I became "bored" with science as an undergrad since I perceived it to primarily investigate the behavior of particular objects (such as a cell line with the expression of some oncogenic genes knocked down through RNAi) and would be difficult to draw any broad and interesting conclusions from those studies that pertain to other phenomenon that do not involve that particular object or the specific circumstances that the object experienced, although I do maintain my appreciation of its accomplishments in elucidating fundamental relationships of the natural world (such as kinetic theory, the inverse square law of gravitation, and Darwinian evolution). In other words, I thought science had too many specific and irrelevant details.

I am still an errant young woman without much motivation.
 
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Aldaron

geriatric
is a Tournament Director Alumnusis a Battle Simulator Admin Alumnusis a Live Chat Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Top Contributor Alumnusis an Administrator Alumnus
Fuck the forum's multiquoting abilities...

Graduating in May with an undergrad in Philosophy.... currently praying that my girlfriend can carry us financially because my degree is utterly useless and I have no idea how I will obtain any sort of respectable employment.
#prayfortrayvon

Do you have any connections at any companies? Usually doesn't take much to get business (marketing primarily) internships with an "in"

Also I'd strongly recommend looking into getting an MBA, cause they don't care about your undergrad, there are a ton of local schools that offer the degree with financial assistance, and you'll be able to get a job with an MBA.

Graduated a year ago from undergrad as a cs major and got a pretty good job, I already have 2 years reserve. At this rate I'm pretty sure I could've been fine not going to college and just worked at a normal job. I don't really spend the money I make so freely so it's kinda just looking pretty and that's about it.
Programming is one of the few fields where you can say that. Spend that money man...saving's accounts rates are a joke, so either spend it on yourself (trips for example) or invest it. Don't just watch it though...that's a waste.

Grad student in Neuroscience. Just started. I like scientific thinking in general, see myself being a scientist, and want to hone my skills in the art of doing science. Cheesy, I know, but true nonetheless.

Neuroscience in particular is my chosen field because the nervous system as a whole (not just the brain, although it's obviously the most complex part) is so complex and has so much that's only hazily understood about it right now, plus it only really started being a big science fairly recently compared to, like, Physics, so it's cool to jump into a field with so much potential. Oh, and nervous system disorders are, by and large, things you mitigate (if that!) rather than actually fucking fix, so it'd be cool to contribute to a field that can be drawn from to yield treatments down the line.

It's a bit premature to say what research I'm doing because I'm still rotating and am still kind of orienting myself with what I'm doing in my current lab, so yeah.
Neuroengineering is fucking cool...don't know too much about neuroscience myself though. I was a B.M.E. as an undergrad a bunch of my bioelectric friends did extremely cool stuff with measuring brain activity and the like. Keep us updated on your research options, cause like you said, it's a relatively new field and stuff is extremely cool!

Graduated with a Mathematics Degree in May and have the per-requisites for Med School.

Currently working as a Tennis Coach and a High School Mathematics Tutor while studying for the MCAT. The hope is to do decently well on it and get into some med school within the US.
No one here believes you are a math major.

JK, med school is always a fun convo with me. I think Ive spent over 6 hours advising Jimbo about med school crap.

Just curious though...how do you feel about the fact that after 4 years of harsh schooling and the 3-7 years of being treated lie trash as a resident, that your currently high salaries will be cut in half, possibly a 1/3, due to universal care?

Note, I'm not hating on public care at all (in fact, "morally" speaking, most health experts should support it), but it is just a mathematical certainty that med salaries will drop dramatically once public health kicks off.
graduating this december in Political Science, History, and International Relations. IDK what ill actually do now, hopefully government policy work or something but guess ill take whatever job I can and get some money flowing in before going on a part university funded / part own income trip to China late next year.
Congratulations in graduating with 3 useless degrees. I'm only half kidding. Not sure how it works in Aussieland but here it isn't too hard to get government internships that segue into something else.

I am a huge advocate of trips...are you think about only China or other parts of Asia as well?

Fresh out of philosophy graduate program at the Sorbonne. Apply to self: where is life headed?
From theory to practice.
ha nice

I graduated in May this year (biomedical engineering). Right now I'm applying for jobs and preparing for the GRE (which I'm going to take soon). I plan on going to grad school for molecular biology next year. I kind of wish I would've decided I wanted to go to grad school earlier and just started this year, but I had no idea what I wanted to do going into my last year of college.
Fellow BME! Are you thinking MS track or phd track? PHD in BME is known to be brutal, so I just want to make sure you are prepared :X

Graduated with a Master's in Computer Science in 2010, got a job doing software in the local government sector. It's a shitty sector. x) Mostly I took the job because I was kind of worried about job prospects given the economy in 2010. That said, it's been a good job, the people I work with are cool, and the pay+benefits are excellent. Hours are a bit long though, and my bosses are pressing me to work more :| In 5 to 10 years... I'll be somewhere between 32 and 37 ^___^
LOL ur so old.

I'm glad you seem to be happier with where you are now than what I previously remember (iirc you mentioned you didn't like where you were at all).

Misty at 37...

Welp not usually a regular on the forums but anyhow...

Graduated like 3-ish months ago. Got a job as a Graphic Designer / Digital Specialist (which really means they slap me on projects anywhere under the entire Adobe Creative Suite sun). Pretty chill, saving up money to pay off the little debt I have left. Hoping to get a Subaru WRX (hatchback awww yis 2 go do things n shiet) within the next year and probably gonna try and pursue making music and playing some live shows in my spare time and on weekends. Fairly steady going over the next year or two, hoping to move to Austin or New York eventually.
This sounds great! I think maniaclyrasist is another member of the forums who graduated recently as a graphic designer as well, and I think he might be living in NYC as well (though he went to school in florida so he might be closer to there).

Working for adobe will be a great experience / resume booster for you...are you thinking of sticking with a big corporation or maybe trying a start up out next?

Graduated in July in Mechanical Engineering. Was debating whether to follow a research route (PHD) or just get an engineering graduate job and get some experience under my belt as I lack any. I don't want to do a Masters degree simply because I want to end up with a PHD at the end of the day and a masters is just a waste of a year if I already know exactly what I want to be researching. Still haven't got an engineering job and waiting for replies to my research applications. Currently working as Mathematics & physics tutor. What frustrates me is that i never done an internship during my bachelors degree (due to circumstances then preventing me to do so) meaning that it will be pretty damn hard to get a job as a) most graduate jobs require a year or two of experience in the industry which is pretty stupid 2)many other vacancies are for graduates..BUT..BUT, with a masters degree (Msc, MEng)

By the looks of things, I am hoping to hopefully get accepted by one of the universities I applied to, finish my researching then get few years experience in the gas & oil industry.
It seems like you know you want a PHD...so I'd really recommend just going all in with that ASAP. No point wasting time...just get it done.

Yes please.

Working with my uncle as a general contractor. Mainly administrative support functions, but also as assistant manager of his company. We do exterior work on homes and businesses. It's an interesting gig so far but I hope to do something different two years from now. At this time it is an important step for me as this kind of experience is good on my resume.
Are you thinking about staying in that space or going into another business? The assistant manager experience will be good experience / resume booster for mba.

Graduated 2009, finally got motivated enough to start grad school back in 2012. Business Admin for me with a track to becoming a CPA. Currently working for the state government (so we get paid right now unlike those feds).
Ah, the CPA. Guaranteed money....the worst job ever. Be ready to be bored. A lot.

Good on you for being one of the few people to actually get the motivation to continue school. Most people are just talk.

I really do not know what to say.

I graduated with a BS in Cell and Molecular Biology. I can understand papers pertaining to those subjects in scientific journals as I have a firm grasp of the terminology and laboratory techniques involved in those fields. I retained much of my scientific knowledge and am quite familiar with many biochemical pathways, but I am lummox in the laboratory (and elsewhere in life) so I cannot reliably perform even the simplest laboratory procedures. I became "bored" with science as an undergrad since I perceived it to primarily investigate the behavior of particular objects (such as a cell line with the expression of some oncogenic genes knocked down through RNAi) and would be difficult to draw any broad and interesting conclusions from those studies that pertain to other phenomenon that do not involve that particular object or the specific circumstances that the object experienced, although I do maintain my appreciation of its accomplishments in elucidating fundamental relationships of the natural world (such as kinetic theory, the inverse square law of gravitation, and Darwinian evolution). In other words, I thought science had too many specific and irrelevant details.

I am still an errant young woman without much motivation.
LOL, I really should respond seriously first but "I am still an errant young woman without much motivation." is such a great way to end a long post...

OK. Have you thought about getting a Masters in a related science's engineering field? You seem to be discouraged with the specificity of the pure science's details...but the engineering side of the coin should have more practical / more generalized uses for you.

I'd strongly look into like a biomechanics masters program or something.

Hi, nowhere near graduating but a freshman doing undergrad in English. What kind of fields and options are open after doing such a degree beyond the patent, Masters+PhD, Law, etc etc etc?
Well...basically teaching and tutoring. I know tech companies are starting to hire English majors (who can prove some technical proficiency) for jobs like documentation experts, but that's really boring work :X

There is also always the stock "be a struggling writer" option :P

I'm currently an accountant; I've been working at a school for children and adults with developmental disorders for 5 years now. I like what I do and where I work, but am debating going to get my masters or looking elsewhere for other opportunities.
This is a pretty common theme...but I always recommend getting the Masters, and asap at that. a.) you'll hopefully be somewhat self motivated enough to use the academic tools available to you to learn more about your field b.) you'll meet a lot of people at similar points in their lives c.) dat resume boostere

Finished my 2-year Computer Engineering degree earlier this year and got a job at a server hosting company. It's a pretty solid job and I like my co-workers and I'm learning a ton, the more I learn, the more I realize I don't know.

I have some concerns about it long-term due to recurring wrist problems (evidently spending virtually all of both your work and leisure time in front of a computer isn't the best idea) but w/e.
Easy option...get a physical hobby. Join a yoga class, a boxing class, an mma class, etc.

2 years is associates right? Are you considering going back to school to finish a bachelor's, or are you good where you are at atm?

Finishing Bachelors in April and this kinda applies to me. I really want to go away for graduate school but don't really have a project or program (or school) in mind. There seem to be so many options when it comes to grad school that it seems near impossible to narrow down alongside a full undergraduate course load.
Canada or USA as well? I forgot what you were doing btw :X so can't comment too much until I know that.

As for the too many options...you're just making excuses :P Just take some time out to talk to a graduate school advisor and get a list to focus on, and do that asap. No point missing deadlines and being forced to wait a full year / semester to enroll.

Started in 2004 for pharmacy. Got screwed over by my advisor being bad and a professor with an unprovoked grudge against me, ultimately carried on and graduated in May 2011 with a B.S. Biochemistry. Had part-time work in an environmental lab for almost exactly six months before being fired over "trust issues" (i.e. a co-worker was badmouthing me to management, then they fired me despite no actual evidence and without allowing me to rebuff the allegations), spent over a year unemployed and only recently picked up full-time work in a crummy factory doing shitty manual labor for menial pay and requiring none of the skills I went to school for (or much of any other skills, for that matter).

Life's great sometimes.
Should've been leaving school as a doctor already in a job making six figs, instead graduate with a bachelor's, about four times as much debt (because I lost my scholarship after leaving the pharmacy program) and I can't even find a god damn job let alone one that pays something more than I can make with a high school degree.

My mom is an accountant for the local government, so I'm hoping my life turns out like hers. She worked "crummy factory job" for 18 years before going back to school for a degree and now has a respectable career. I hope it doesn't take me that long to get somewhere decent in life, considering I went to college right out of high school and not in my mid-30's, but you know what I mean. I really liked my lab job, so I'm trying to get certified as a wastewater operator and maybe next time a position opens up at the local wastewater treatment plant, I won't be their second best candidate.
Looks like you're hit some unfortunate circumstances in your academic career...but that happens. It's good to see you're looking to get certified though...but are you just looking or actually trying :P (as in studying / doing the necessary required hours etc.)

I hope actually actively trying cause the worst thing I see people our age doing is just wasting their time by making lofty goals / plans but never actually implementing the course of action to achieve them...

Ph.d or it isn't worth it imo. At my uni, philosophy undergrads might take a maximum of 4 classes in logic and none of them require programming. To acquire the programming skills necessary and then get an MA probably wouldn't be more than a year or two quicker than a ph.d
phds are usually 5-7 years full time, and the normal course for a master's is 1-3 (1 for full time ambitious students, 2 for normal full time students, 3 for part time and lazy bum full time students).

The core for most programs can be done in 1 year, so I guess you're looking at 2-4 years, meaning it could be as you say...if you're lazy, don't do it, but if you're motivated and can dedicate full time then it'll be much faster (also without the research stress).
 
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No one here believes you are a math major.

JK, med school is always a fun convo with me. I think Ive spent over 6 hours advising Jimbo about med school crap.

Just curious though...how do you feel about the fact that after 4 years of harsh schooling and the 3-7 years of being treated lie trash as a resident, that your currently high salaries will be cut in half, possibly a 1/3, due to universal care?

Note, I'm not hating on public care at all (in fact, "morally" speaking, most health experts should support it), but it is just a mathematical certainty that med salaries will drop dramatically once public health kicks off.
I don't really care if anyone here believes it or not, but if you want proof, we can easily chat about some multi-variable calculus or graph theory :]

For schooling, it would be 4 years of harsh schooling with the goal of just passing, not getting honors, about 5 or so years of residency, and two years of specialty school. I've never been much of a test taker, but practical examinations I do incredibly well on (I used to beast all of my Organic Chemistry labs). Resident's don't really get treated like trash anymore, it's mainly the hours that are garbage. Yeah, waking up at 4 am to go on call blows, but hey, someone has to do it.

About the salary, I wouldn't be a general practitioner. I've actually been highly interested in plastic surgery for the longest time. Since I plan on doing both cosmetic and reconstructive, and medical insurance doesn't cover cosmetic surgeries, I don't really need to worry about that, especially if I run via a private practice. Also, just to prevent these jokes from coming in, no I'm not doing it because of breast augmentations or to be like the guys on Nip and Tuck. My uncle is actually a highly regarded Plastic Surgeon, so I've shadowed him many many times. Breast Augmentation surgery is not as cool as it seems when you watch it in person.

Med salaries are actually dropping already, but honestly, I just want to help people feel better about themselves, which is why I'm doing it. The money is just a bonus.
 
...I'm not even gonna try to dig out your reply Aldaron lol. But in response, I guess it depends on what you define as boring; certainly any job can be "boring", but I've always found accounting to be fairly interesting as well. If anything, I may end up not getting my CPA at the rate I'm going, the tests for it are just...eww...but the MBA is definitely something I will be getting, as I'm only a couple of classes away from graduating.

The main reason I didn't bother going into Grad school right away (besides hating boring classes and wanting time off to play) was that I always felt I was too young, I graduated from college when I was like 21 so I figured that I could find a job (hopefully one that would help pay for it) and go back later when I was more around the "average" age for grad students. Fastforward through the depression and yeah...didn't work out as planned, so figured may as well just add to the student loans and get it out of the way.
 
In my last semester of undergrad right now, hoping to go on to earn an MD and ultimately be a neurologist, psychiatrist, or neurosurgeon. I'm looking mostly at medical schools in New England and New York; hopefully I get in somewhere. It seems like such a crapshoot unless you have amazing MCAT scores and an amazing GPA, and even then you're not *guaranteed* to get into a top institution.

My top choice is my state medical school, since in-state tuition is really low, and I could live at home in order to save on living expenses. I really don't want to be in heaps of debt upon graduation, so unless I get a *really* good scholarship to a "better" school, my state school is probably where I'll end up. Anyway, they say it doesn't really matter as much where you go to medical school as it does where you get your residency, so I just have to make sure to kick butt wherever I end up going.

Oh, and I'm taking a gap year in between undergrad and med school (actually, more like 1.5 years) to work in the lab I'm currently doing research in for credit, because I really enjoy it there, and it will be nice to be able to earn *some* money to save up for stuff.


I really do not know what to say.

I graduated with a BS in Cell and Molecular Biology. I can understand papers pertaining to those subjects in scientific journals as I have a firm grasp of the terminology and laboratory techniques involved in those fields. I retained much of my scientific knowledge and am quite familiar with many biochemical pathways, but I am lummox in the laboratory (and elsewhere in life) so I cannot reliably perform even the simplest laboratory procedures. I became "bored" with science as an undergrad since I perceived it to primarily investigate the behavior of particular objects (such as a cell line with the expression of some oncogenic genes knocked down through RNAi) and would be difficult to draw any broad and interesting conclusions from those studies that pertain to other phenomenon that do not involve that particular object or the specific circumstances that the object experienced, although I do maintain my appreciation of its accomplishments in elucidating fundamental relationships of the natural world (such as kinetic theory, the inverse square law of gravitation, and Darwinian evolution). In other words, I thought science had too many specific and irrelevant details.

I am still an errant young woman without much motivation.
I also saw your post in the "applying to college" thread, and you said your GPA was a 3.2 and that you had good GRE scores. There's no reason why you wouldn't get accepted into a Master's program in a biology-related field *somewhere*, especially since you seem like you know your stuff. If cell+molec seems too reductionistic to interest you, maybe try something like environmental bio, cognitive neuroscience, psychology, or public health. Or an engineering field related to your major like Aldaron said. You could also do a post-bac program somewhere to boost your GPA and then apply to medical schools. There's also the possibility of applying for lab positions in the pharmaceutical or biotech industry, many of which only require a Bachelor's. There are a lot of options out there (including ones I haven't listed), so don't give up just yet!

PS. It's nice to see another scientifically-inclined female on the boards! :toast:
 

LonelyNess

Makin' PK Love
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I graduated in May with my degree in secondary mathematics education (emphasis on Middle School) and I'm happy to say I've got a job lined up for next year teaching 8th graders at my local middle school! (I'm pretty lucky that the current Algebra teacher there is retiring).

Looking forward to still being relatively poor even though I've got a college degree. $35000 a year is criminal...
 
When these types of threads pop up, I always try to tell my story but end up backing out at the last moment because it ends up a jumbled mess. I'll give it a shot this time around. Apologize in advance if it's long winded:

Went off to college at the turn of the century, more specifically a tech institute (at least that's what it was called back then). I flunked out about a year later. The writing was on the wall though. I was a smart kid that got good grades coming up, but I started being less and less consistent with schoolwork starting at middle school, worsening as the years dragged on. It was a combination of things: going from a great school system to a terrible one that was two years behind curriculum wise made school boring, playing too much video games and, later, card games (esp. when I got into competitive gaming), etc. Barely finished high school due to a combination of laziness and boredom, though I did get a chance to learn a little graphic and web design thanks to certain classes near the end. I thought that was what I wanted to do, but the college I went to didn't offer that so I chose a Business Admin major (big mistake at the time). Don't wanna keep boring people with details though. Seems like that's the same story of a lot of people in life except for Smogon lol.

Fast forward: my twenties are kind of a blur atm but I'll give it a whirl. Got married early twenties. My gaming hobbies bled into my twenties up until marriage. Still married, but there are issues (have been for a while now; we're separated). My grandmother and some other family members said I should get into Banking/Finance since "I would have a good job" (hindsight: LOL!). This was in my early twenties though, when I was kinda depressed and my resume consisted of terrible retail level jobs making minimum wage. Nowhere near enough to live on my own. I went with their advice, thinking I'd be good at it since my late grandfather made his living in Finance and landed a job in Retail Banking. Pay wasn't great, but it was enough to support myself. Basically quit any and all forms of gaming once I got married until mid-to-late twenties when "Pokemon called me back" lol.

I've now worked 7 years at 3 different financial institutions in 4 different positions. All have been low-level though, pay grade and position wise. That's how Retail Banking is. I've been fired twice, the most recent including. I've tried on many different occasions to move into other areas of the industry (Mortgage, Loans, Investments, etc.) with no success. Probably due to some combination of me doing something wrong. After the economy hit and seeing the behavior of some of the larger banks, I got to the point last year where I decided I was done with the industry and now want to find out what the hell my purpose is in this life and go do it. Burnout and frustration at my most recent company affected my attendance and ultimately got me terminated. Now, I just look back at my teens and 20s and go "wow, I've done nothing with my life but waste it so far".

Problem is I've been out of work for 7 months now and, while there are some things that have piqued my interest lately (starting a blog, getting into programming to ultimately develop an app and subsequently start a business doing app/game development, maybe start a non-profit organization or two...and maybe web development), I haven't actually started on anything. It's been a lot of research and very little application (lel). I'm suffering from the syndrome Aldaron pointed at above for "people my age": making (not so?)lofty goals, but not executing.

Of course, in the middle of all this, I'm still fighting off laziness and depression...and possibly diabetes, apparently. I know I need to get my ass up and do something but I really need the right encouragement too. I don't exactly want pity, but I have to admit I've had few cheerleaders in life, partially due to me not trusting anyone, and am realizing that I won't be able to go through life without a bigger and better support system. At first, I thought I was "suffering the consequences of not getting a degree", but I realized I have no real way of knowing if I'd be in a better financial position because of it. So I don't beat myself up so much about not finishing college now.

There's more to the story, but I'll let people weigh in first.
 
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I graduated in 2011, with a BSc(Adv)(Hons I) in Physics and LLB (Hons). I didn't get a job right out of university, largely because I didn't get a clerkship/internship in my penultimate year, but was working as a research assistant at the law school with my tax lecturer while I finished my professional practice education and sought a graduate role at a law firm. Not long after that, I got called to come in for an interview for one of the Big Six firms (i.e. Magic Circle, White Shoe, albeit much smaller in my country). I got hired, and I've been working there for just over a year, in my last of three rotations within the firm. It's my dream job, basically. I'm currently working in the energy and resources sector, but my previous rotations were in patent litigation and commercial IP/telecommunications. I have to choose where in the firm I'll settle permanently in February.

But man oh man, the debt. It's huge, about 1.5 times my yearly salary.
 
Hi, nowhere near graduating but a freshman doing undergrad in English. What kind of fields and options are open after doing such a degree beyond the patent, Masters+PhD, Law, etc etc etc?
I have a number of friends who did English/History/Gender Studies/etc., and they're all gainfully employed now in a variety of places. One was working for a dictionary company, but subsequently changed and is now working for the tax office. One is a mid-level public servant in the Department of Health, after working at the Department of Trade. Her sibling is still there, I think. Another works for a captioning/respeaking company.
 
I have a number of friends who did English/History/Gender Studies/etc., and they're all gainfully employed now in a variety of places. One was working for a dictionary company, but subsequently changed and is now working for the tax office. One is a mid-level public servant in the Department of Health, after working at the Department of Trade. Her sibling is still there, I think. Another works for a captioning/respeaking company.
"Gender Studies" and the liberal arts in general or often derided as it is perceived to be not intellectually demanding or practical (as in providing vocational or job-related skills) when compared to the STEM fields. Pretty ironic.

---

BTW, how does being an adult affects one's love/interest in Pokemon (or any other similar interest associated with adolescence) whether battling or watching the anime. It seems most of my peers do not care. It just seems kinda quirky that I still like it even though I already finished college. I am more interested in the sociological or psychological aspect of maturity, not in discussing the Pokemon franchise itself.

It just seems everyone became a different person (actually matured and relinquished their adolescent attachments such as Pokemon) and my mien is still quite child-like as I retained much of my childish interests although I did acquire some mature interests and competencies while in college/high school such as scientific knowledge and an intellectual interest in history and political philosophy.
 
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Bass

Brother in arms
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I graduated last May with a B.S. in Atmospheric Science, and almost enough Computer Science courses to be considered a minor. I have recently started a graduate program in Atmospheric Science at a different university. I am seeking a Ph.D. but my department requires an M.S. before admission into the Ph.D. program. I suppose I can talk a bit about my research interests before I get into describing the program itself. If that doesn't interest you, skip the next three paragraphs.

In case you do not know, Atmospheric Science primarily encompasses the study of weather and climate. Climate change is a particularly fascinating subject to me because nearly everyone in the scientific community agrees that it is anthropogenic, while everyone else isn't even sure if it is happening. We often call this the "consensus gap" because we still struggle to communicate the science effectively to the public which a portion of not only doubts the physical science basis of climate change, but even questions the integrity of the scientists. The truth is that other fields of science have trouble communicating their results to the public effectively as well, but our field is a political fire cracker so it gets special attention. Scientists generally try to stay out of political debates as often as possible because they do not emphasize facts, but I personally have a hard time staying silent when I see someone who knows very little about the science bad mouth it. You should know this well if you have read any of my most recent posts in this forum.

As far as the actual science goes, my interests lie in numerical modeling of climate (or more broadly speaking atmospheric circulation) and general computational fluid dynamics. Most people in my program are here because they have interests in weather and generally meteorology (ie they love storm chasing) and general atmospheric physics (for example remote sensing with satellites). In fact, most of my fellow first years dread the programming and computational parts of our homework assignments which are being given increasing emphasis in our program since computer modeling has so many useful applications in our field. Nevertheless, while many atmospheric scientists make use of models, only a few of them actually devote their time towards developing the actual dynamical core, and the skills required to do that often lean more towards the realms of applied mathematics and computational science rather than atmospheric science. And to be honest, while I consider myself an atmospheric scientist due to my broad interest in climate dynamics, this is the path I wish to take.

On a more technical note, an overview of climate modeling wouldn't be complete without addressing why there is such uncertainty about how bad we expect the change to be (eg, the "climate sensitivity"). Truthfully, the largest source of uncertainty is due to the smallest scale atmopsheric processes, primarily turbulence and clouds. This is because today's models are ran over a grid covering the planet, but due to computational cost grid cells have a resolution on the order of 100 km in today's models, while many of these processes could occur at 10 km scales, or perhaps even smaller! Therefore we use what are called "parameterizations" to approximate the effects of these processes statistically. Most atmospheric scientists involved in numerical modeling work on stuff like this, because clouds in particular are such a large uncertainty that they pose many interesting research questions in this field. My own interests though are almost purely computational, for example one potential research area that I might get more deeply involved with is implementing efficient and stable numerical schemes on other types of grids (eg a hexagonal grid instead of a rectangular grid).

I could probably talk about this stuff in much greater depth but I think that would bore everyone else. As promised now I will talk about my experiences so far in my graduate program and it is very much as back breaking as others have previously warned me about. I can't wait to get started with my research, but my program requires us to complete most of our coursework in our first year. And the first year courses, while all related to atmospheric science of course, are very broad in scope, so I don't find all of them to be that interesting. I am currently taking courses in atmospheric chemistry, cloud physics, geophysical fluid dynamics, and an introductory numerical modeling course. Four courses is not unusual for an undergrad, perhaps even a bit light, but for a grad student this is about as heavy as it gets, not so much because the material is incredibly tough (though it is certainly not easy) but because of the shear amount of homework that we are getting. I'd say each class assigns about 6-10 hours per week of homework on average, though some of them are assigning me way more than others. The first homework assignment in my numerical modeling class took me over twenty hours to complete, but I find the material interesting and learn a lot from each assignment. Though it is all stressful, our professors constantly tell us not to worry about our grades too much and focus on learning the material (if you have less than a B average in grad school, you get probation but you really have to fuck up to get less than that in any class). The real issue comes when I take into account other obligations besides homework. For example I'll start applying for fellowships and also will present at a conference (AGU in San Francisco, in case you were curious). At the very least though, I am told that if I can survive this first semester, it will only get easier from there (at least as far as time management goes), so I look forward to seeing some light at the end of a long tunnel, so to speak.

And there you have it. I doubt most readers of this thread will bother to read all of that, but Aldaron really seemed to be curious judging from his opening post, so I hope this satisfies :P
 

Lee

@ Thick Club
is a Top Team Rater Alumnusis a Community Leader Alumnus
never went to university, currently working as a Grade 7 English teacher. good wage and no debt. funny how life works out.

sorry to nip off topic Aldaron but I feel JackieChun's post deserves a reply.

your story and others expressed in this thread just reinforce my belief that western education systems force students to decide what they want to do with the rest of their lives at far too young an age. i had no idea what i wanted to do at 16 and nor did most of my peers; they're now unemployed/miserable on account of their useless degrees/becoming locked into a career path based on a decision they made while they were effectively still children. My girlfriend is a good example (sought a career in the oil industry racking up £30,000 of student debt in the process and then fell in love with nature conservationalism) and she always references this quote from Baz Luhrman's Sunscreen:

'The most interesting people I know didn't know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives.
Some of the most interesting 40 year olds I know still don't.'

You'll know what it is you want to do in time - just don't expect a 'eureka' moment; there has to be compromise on your part. There is no perfect career, there are merely careers with more pros than cons...careers where getting out of bed in the morning isn't a complete chore. A career that you can proudly reveal to strangers who ask your profession. Barring a stroke of luck or being one of those bastards who unwaveringly knew what they wanted to do from a young age, it's the best you can hope for.
 
I graduated with a BA in economics in May 2011. I briefly thought about pursuing a post graduate degree in economics, but I'm more interested in the philosophical half of the field than any of the applied stuff (ie mathematical and statistical models).

I ended up getting a job at a large software company in the healthcare IT industry right outside of Madison, WI. I spend most of my time working with large healthcare organizations on clinical interoperability and doing some internal management type stuff. I generally enjoy the technical half of my job: development, testing, working with other vendors and customers on interesting project, etc, but really dislike how political the industry is (interoperability is especially interesting in this regard).
 
Just graduated from Arizona State University in May 2013 with my BS in Urban Planning. Tried for a few months to look for relevant jobs, but they all wanted experience that I didn't have. Instead, I've joined the United States Navy and will be shipping out April 8, 2014. After that, I'm thinking about using the GI Bill to pursue a Public Health/Public Administration dual degree and either go into the federal government or go back into the Navy as an officer.
 
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"Gender Studies" and the liberal arts in general or often derided as it is perceived to be not intellectually demanding or practical (as in providing vocational or job-related skills) when compared to the STEM fields. Pretty ironic.

---

BTW, how does being an adult affects one's love/interest in Pokemon (or any other similar interest associated with adolescence) whether battling or watching the anime. It seems most of my peers do not care. It just seems kinda quirky that I still like it even though I already finished college. I am more interested in the sociological or psychological aspect of maturity, not in discussing the Pokemon franchise itself.

It just seems everyone became a different person (actually matured and relinquished their adolescent attachments such as Pokemon) and my mien is still quite child-like as I retained much of my childish interests although I did acquire some mature interests and competencies while in college/high school such as scientific knowledge and an intellectual interest in history and political philosophy.

I'm a corporate lawyer, and I bought Pokemon X on release day. I play Magic the Gathering frequently. I'll still talk at length about JRPGs.
 
graduated in june with chemistry & math w/ specialization in econ. applying for bioengineering phd programs. maybe delay for another year and go for md/phd. interested in synthetic/materials approach to medical problems, also clean energy/water scarcity. wasted two years of undergrad thinking i was going into econ consulting --> mba/finance, realized 4th year i didn't want to. sucks to "waste" time switching to science grad track but better now than later!

not that anyone actually stays in the field they go into immediately after college.
 

Jorgen

World's Strongest Fairy
is a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
graduated in june with chemistry & math w/ specialization in econ. applying for bioengineering phd programs. maybe delay for another year and go for md/phd. interested in synthetic/materials approach to medical problems, also clean energy/water scarcity. wasted two years of undergrad thinking i was going into econ consulting --> mba/finance, realized 4th year i didn't want to. sucks to "waste" time switching to science grad track but better now than later!

not that anyone actually stays in the field they go into immediately after college.
What programs you looking into for bioengineering? I looked at a few myself in the grad school hunt, although I was more geared toward the biomedical side than some of the environmental stuff you're looking at.
 
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Graduated in December of 2012 with a Communications degree with a Public Relations specialization and a minor in marketing. Depression started setting in around April when I was still at my dead-end job working as a lifeguard for just above minimum wage. No opportunity for advancement, shit hours, and a lot of my co-workers were stuck-up teenagers with rich parents. Eventually I gave up on getting a good agency job and applied at a call center that had recently opened up in town. I figured it would be a shit job, but at least it would be a better stepping stone and it would pay the bills better than what I had. Obviously I got the job and was able to leave the pool. Started in May and I'm still here.

Turns out I actually really like it here. Yeah, it's what you would expect from a call center: sitting on phones listening to pissed-off customers (although most people are actually really nice and appreciative), so to actually keep people here, HR puts a lot of effort into creating a positive company culture. Unlimited free coffee, fully-stocked on-site convenience store, and it seems like we get food catered for us at least once a week. Hell, last week, between a pizza party, catered meals, and free cake, I didn't even have to bring any food all week. Also we get pretty good health benefits and voluntary time off so we get the option to go home early if it's slow.

But what I like the most is that I kick ass at what I do. I started off working the 3pm-11:30pm shift, but within 2 months I got my scores high enough to get moved to the day shift with decent hours. Now I'm one of the best performers on the highest performing team in the site.

This morning my supervisor asked all of us what our individual plans were here, and when I told him I wanted to do something higher up within the company that's more related to my degree (and I've expressed specific interest in working in HR), he told us he would work with all of us individually to help us meet our goals. So I'm really looking forward to moving up in the company to work.

I've considered graduate school, and I'd eventually like to go and expand in public relations, or at least some aspect of communications, but there isn't anything around that offers it, and I wouldn't be able to afford it now anyway. So for now I'm working on trying to develop some useful skills that I've touched on a little bit in college, like writing and some basic graphic design. I'm in the process of starting up a gaming blog for the sake of writing, but I'm a bit lost on how to continue learning graphic design. I've also done some sponsorship work for a local nonprofit, getting local businesses to sponsor an annual charity 10k, so I'm not completely without relevant experience.
 

Jackal

I'm not retarded I'm Canadian it's different
is a Tournament Director Alumnusis a Site Content Manager Alumnusis a Super Moderator Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Simulator Moderator Alumnus
Graduating in April from a dual degree program with a BS in Information Systems and BA in Business Administration.

Always thought I would be in school for as long as possible to delay starting work but now I can't wait to get out. I've got a full time job lined up for next September in Management Consulting and although I'm loving taking the last year pretty easy I'm also pretty pumped to get started.

I have no fucking idea what I want to do in my life but that's why I'm so grateful for how things worked out - in consulting I'll have the opportunity to experience a wide array of both industries and functions and it's pretty much a fast track into whatever industry I do end up going into.

I definitely identify more with the business side of my education than the computer science side. I enjoy high impact work and I would rather work 15 hours a day doing something I love than 8 hours a day doing something tedious. If I were to consider going back to school it would have to be at an MBA at one of the top american schools or I couldn't really justify it. I definitely want to stay in Canada long term though.

Short term I will put in a good 3-5 years in management consulting to learn as much as I possibly can, and then completely reassess my life and my options. Long term, I see myself either doing something entrepreneurial, getting into the sports (baseball or hockey) industry as a GM or an agent (I can dream, right?) or taking some other really big risk chasing one of my passions. I would be remiss if I didn't.
 
I graduated in June 2010 with a BS in Business Administration (Marketing concentration). Afterwards I took an unpaid internship at a startup that specializes in LEDs, where I researched the street light market and sized up the opportunity. I finished my internship with a presentation to the CEO on my recommendation.

From there I got a job on PlayStation's marketing team, where I am currently still at. This is ideal for me, because I've always known that I wanted to work in the gaming industry, and I have always wanted to stay in NorCal. Being at PlayStation gives me insight into both the hardware and software business, which is a unique experience that I wouldn't get if I were at a purely software-focused company.

I'm not sure if I'd like to stay here forever, though. I have nothing to complain about, really, and it's an exciting time to be working at PlayStation (y'all better be getting your PS4), but I think it would be fun to learn CS and create my own games in the future. In 3-5 years, I hope to teach myself to program and get started on my own video game.
 
Got into a unique program at my school and am now finishing up my last semester of undergrad studies before starting grad school this upcoming spring at Maryland (assuming I get accepted). I'm majoring in mechanical engineering right now and will hopefully be doing sustainable energy engineering at grad school -- it's about half nuclear engineering-half mechanical engineering with a bunch of energy storage/transfer/conversion thrown in. No thesis option since I have one year to get the masters done before going down to Charleston, SC, for my military career that will take up the next 5 years or so.

I've liked mechanical engineering a lot and feel that it's given me a strong base for future studies in whatever I choose. I'm taking a fundamentals of nuclear engineering course right now and am loving it -- I'm pumped to specialize more in graduate school.
 
I graduated in June 2010 with a BS in Business Administration (Marketing concentration). Afterwards I took an unpaid internship at a startup that specializes in LEDs, where I researched the street light market and sized up the opportunity. I finished my internship with a presentation to the CEO on my recommendation.

From there I got a job on PlayStation's marketing team, where I am currently still at. This is ideal for me, because I've always known that I wanted to work in the gaming industry, and I have always wanted to stay in NorCal. Being at PlayStation gives me insight into both the hardware and software business, which is a unique experience that I wouldn't get if I were at a purely software-focused company.
How did you make that transition? I'd like to eventually make my way into marketing in the gaming industry as well, but I'm not sure where to start.
 

DM

Ce soir, on va danser.
is a Site Content Manager Alumnusis a Super Moderator Alumnusis a Live Chat Contributor Alumnus
Graduated from RIT with a BA in 2005. Went back to law school at SUNY Buffalo in 2009, graduated there in 2012. Passed the NY bar that summer, admitted to practice law in NY last February, and been living large as an attorney ever since.
 
How did you make that transition? I'd like to eventually make my way into marketing in the gaming industry as well, but I'm not sure where to start.
I'm lucky because PlayStation recruits from my alma mater, Cal Poly. After my internship ended, I went back to my school's Spring career fair with the sole intention of getting a job at PlayStation.

Problem was, they were only looking for engineers at my campus, and they were quick to dismiss me when they saw "Marketing" on my resume. Regardless, I stayed and gave my elevator pitch - talked about my passion for gaming, how I made the 2.5hr drive just because I heard PlayStation was there recruiting, etc. They still said they were only looking for engineers.

Then two weeks later I got a call from the recruiter saying a position opened up that she thought I'd be perfect for. After 3 rounds of interviews I got the job. Started off as a contractor and am now full time.

So yeah, like I said, I got lucky. My recommendation would be to just always be on the look-out for open positions. Until you get a job in the industry, you should work on contributing to gaming communities or starting your own. I put my involvement on Smogon on my resume (at least, the resume I had for companies in the gaming industry) and I think it helped. Also try your best to get face-to-face with someone at a company you want to work at. Meeting the recruiter in person definitely helped me stand out, and I think I successfully conveyed my passion for video games in a way that can't be done on paper.

Hope that helps. Good luck.
 

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