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That’s what she said

thank you... Sometimes I feel like grad school isn’t too different from high school. There’s cliques , popular kids (or kidz), pranks, a newsletter, juvenile jokes, desire to please and impress advisors (or teachers), relationships (people getting pregnant and having kids!) and people who don’t know what they’re doing once they leave.

I never truly clicked with my cohort. I liked them, but my interaction with them was all surface level and related to class or work. I figured I could get that deeper level of friendship from my long time friends. I got advice and mentorship about grad school from older students at work. Later, as my advisor recruited new students, I got to know them too and they became my new source of support.

But things are changing these days and now I feel like that junior who has few friends left at school ’cause she kicked it with all the seniors and they’ve gone off to college. Only in this case, my friends earned their PhDs and are off being great young scholars or they’ve moved away to be with a spouse and are working on the dissertation from far away.

I took the photo above because it reminded me of one of my co-advisees. He recently defended his dissertation proposal and moved away to be with his wife. I miss him, despite the juvenile jokes.

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4 thoughts on “That’s what she said

  1. I kind of feel like this with the group of people I work with now. I like them, but I can’t seem to make personal connections with them. What sucks is that my friends will be staying behind in the old school at the end of the year.

    I’m sure you’ll find new friends. If you don’t, at least you’lll have more time to dedicate to writing your dissertation.

  2. That’s happened to me before too. I think it’s one of the difficult things about grad school–something that can make it more isolating. Everyone is so transient. Actually, I decided to move to LA because most of my grad student support network moved away from Ann Arbor. Not that I have many friends in LA…but at least there are more brown people! 🙂

  3. fabian says:

    Law school is just like high school. It is actually worse at times. Physical fights between last students over politics, girls, etc. You name it, it is here.

  4. Geo,
    You think not having much of a social life would make me more productive… um no. I was actually least engaged in my program when I was most disconnected from others in my program. As I’m more connected, I find it harder to bullshit that I’m doing work, so I’m more likely to do work. I hope you can make a personal connection with the new group.

    Rebelde,
    Wait, LA has more brown people than Ann Arbor? Hehe…

    Fabian,
    Physical fights? You’ve got to be kidding. I’d think physical fights would be replaced with lawsuits or something.

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