Mention spouse @ the school in PS

CurseTheseFactorsOf2
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Mention spouse @ the school in PS

Postby CurseTheseFactorsOf2 » Wed Oct 19, 2011 2:21 pm

Thoughts on somehow integrating the information that your spouse is currently a doctoral student at the university you're applying to? Spouse is year 1 PhD Statistics, application is for PhD Physics.

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midwestphysics
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Re: Mention spouse @ the school in PS

Postby midwestphysics » Wed Oct 19, 2011 4:32 pm

Not very much as I would avoid it , in fact If I were a prof I'd look at it this way. The spouse is already ahead of this student in terms of study, I'd imagine a statistics phd is probably shorter if at the most the same amount of time. So, if the spouse graduates first, what if a job offer would require relocation? Will the student stay? I actually think the two-body situation is a deterrent to some, it's complicates the arrangement.

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grae313
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Re: Mention spouse @ the school in PS

Postby grae313 » Wed Oct 19, 2011 6:03 pm

I remember a post from admissionsprof saying that they do take these sorts of things into consideration, and I don't necessarily think it would have a negative impact. I think professors respect the two body problem, and having an applicant's spouse there does give the applicant a good reason to be very serious about attending the school. I'm not sure the application essay is the best place for it though -- I personally might elect to call the admissions secretary and explain the situation so that he/she could make a note in my file for reviewers, were I in this situation. It may not make any difference at all but I don't think it would hurt.

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HappyQuark
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Re: Mention spouse @ the school in PS

Postby HappyQuark » Wed Oct 19, 2011 6:31 pm

CurseTheseFactorsOf2 wrote:Thoughts on somehow integrating the information that your spouse is currently a doctoral student at the university you're applying to? Spouse is year 1 PhD Statistics, application is for PhD Physics.


The short, and probably most honest, answer to this question is we don't know. There is no clear advantage or disadvantage to the two body problem from the perspective of the school. What does exist, however, are perceived advantages or disadvantages and that seems to change based on who you ask.

For example
Pros:
> If you are a strong candidate, the school can make you an offer and be relatively certain you will accept their offer over all others.
> You are unlikely to try to transfer once you are in.

Cons:
> Being married leaves less time for studying and time spent in the lab.
> As mentioned before, if you and your spouse are on different time lines, you might be more inclined to transfer or settle with a Master's

Ultimately, it will come down to whether or not the professor reviewing your application feels that your relationship will be a hinderance or an advantage to the department. In my opinion, unless you are a strong candidate and the school will be very likely to make an offer, I'd leave the info about your spouse off.

CurseTheseFactorsOf2
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Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2011 7:57 pm

Re: Mention spouse @ the school in PS

Postby CurseTheseFactorsOf2 » Wed Oct 19, 2011 6:40 pm

Thanks for sounding off you guys, the different perspectives are much appreciated. I will probably leave the spouse info out.

admissionprof
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Re: Mention spouse @ the school in PS

Postby admissionprof » Wed Oct 19, 2011 9:34 pm

If you are both applying, even in different departments, then it is very helpful to mention it. We've occasionally gotten calls from other departments, and if the person they want has a partner who is "on the bubble", then it does make a difference (and the calls have gone both ways).

It's a little different if one is already there. That depends on (a) what you think your chances are independent of a spouse, and (b) how highly regarded the spouse is within their own department.

If the spouse is doing well, then Stats would very much want to keep them. In that case, the spouse can mention the situation to their own department chair (or appropriate person)----and then they would likely quietly let the physics admissions committee chair know. That may be the best option....then nothing is in writing and everything is informal.

bfollinprm
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Re: Mention spouse @ the school in PS

Postby bfollinprm » Sun Nov 27, 2011 6:46 pm

CurseTheseFactorsOf2 wrote:Thoughts on somehow integrating the information that your spouse is currently a doctoral student at the university you're applying to? Spouse is year 1 PhD Statistics, application is for PhD Physics.



Agreed with everyone saying not to mention. Normally I would, but that advice holds more I think for situations when you're applying simultaneously (and the school has an incentive to accept the other applicant once they decide they want one of the pair). The thing I would do, though, is use the connection to the university to speak to faculty members. Have your spouse help you contact members of the physics department asking if they have time to talk with you about interest in their research--they'll respond more readily since it's a university email account. You can use your proximity to the university to leverage an advantage.

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Andromeda
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Re: Mention spouse @ the school in PS

Postby Andromeda » Fri Dec 02, 2011 6:56 am

HappyQuark wrote:
CurseTheseFactorsOf2 wrote:Thoughts on somehow integrating the information that your spouse is currently a doctoral student at the university you're applying to? Spouse is year 1 PhD Statistics, application is for PhD Physics.


The short, and probably most honest, answer to this question is we don't know. There is no clear advantage or disadvantage to the two body problem from the perspective of the school. What does exist, however, are perceived advantages or disadvantages and that seems to change based on who you ask.

For example
Pros:
> If you are a strong candidate, the school can make you an offer and be relatively certain you will accept their offer over all others.
> You are unlikely to try to transfer once you are in.

Cons:
> Being married leaves less time for studying and time spent in the lab.
> As mentioned before, if you and your spouse are on different time lines, you might be more inclined to transfer or settle with a Master's

Ultimately, it will come down to whether or not the professor reviewing your application feels that your relationship will be a hinderance or an advantage to the department. In my opinion, unless you are a strong candidate and the school will be very likely to make an offer, I'd leave the info about your spouse off.


/threadjack

Damn, remind me to not marry someone who might go into a field where they hide my existence because I would be considered a "hindrance." :?




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