meI’m a graduate student working towards my PhD in English Literature. When looking for advice on whether to apply to graduate school, I found the online community dominated with perspectives from harried current applicants looking to commiserate, tenured professors becoming disillusioned with the current system, and regretful former graduate students who feel they’ve wasted their time and money. While a healthy dose of each of these perspectives is helpful and even necessary for those considering graduate school, it was hard to get a clear, informed idea of what to expect from graduate school.  Where were the voices of students who were currently in graduate school and satisfied with their choice?

The best advice I received came from having honest conversations with current graduate students  and hearing their personal stories.  Some had come directly from their undergraduate institution, some had acquired a master’s first, some had worked for years before applying.  Many had great enthusiasm for their research, some enjoyed teaching, others were exploring new ways to think about the writing process. However, they all had one thing in common: they had applied, been accepted, and decided to stick with graduate school – regardless of downsides. This blog is a space where I will try keep an honest account of my successes and failures in graduate school.  My hope is that it will allow students considering graduate school a chance to assess whether the experience is right for them.

More about me:

I’m an avid drinker of coffee (and gin, on occasion), a painter and DIY-crafter in my free time, and a collector of shot glasses and retro glass soda bottles (when I feel like it). I’m an advocate for the use of the oxford comma. I don’t often use parenthesis as a stylistic choice, but when I do I use them a lot (apparently). Above all, I have a passion for writing, reading, and continually delving into the topics I’m not sure I’ll ever understand. I try to be ok with the reality that not much in life makes sense. Ask me about it.

– J.K.

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