Throwback Thursday – Eek I’m a PhD student! (October 2014)

This final #throwbackthursday looks back to the interview and application process for my PhD, I can hardly believe that is was two years ago and I am now a third year! #gulp



Well technically I’m a MPhil student, since you first register fro that and then apply for an ‘upgrade’. Checking some old text messages I was amused to find how they tracked the ups and downs of my application, interview and offer and gave me some reflection on the journey before I turn and look towards the path ahead.

Evidently I was very nervous about the interview:

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But I wasn’t alone:

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I hadn’t! In part because I’d fallen into my old trap of “ignore it and hope it goes away” but also because I had been distracted my a new job I had just started! Anyway after some interview advice / pep talk the next day was interview time which was one of the most stressful things I have done so far. I was placed second, but to my delight the first choice candidate declined and a month later I received an email offering me the PhD scholarship:

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So six months later I have started my PhD. Predictably I’m stressed! It helps that I have some familiarity with both Imperial College and the Museum but the start of term at university is not an autism-friendly time, the campus was very busy with fresher’s week stands, and I didn’t feel up to looking around with all the crowds. However in the PREDICTS lab I feel I am settling in ok, I have attended lab meetings which are useful to hear what everyone has been up to and share recent papers. I am still feeling rather lost, but it is improving every day. I’m trying to remember how I felt when I first started in the soil group, did I feel lost and like I didn’t belong? I can’t remember, but if I did it must have gotten better, so logically it will again.



It’s interesting looking back at this post because although I have made progress but I am still finding being away from home very difficult and I really hoped I would have settled by now. At least I am coping enough to make progress on my work. I have had a extra difficult time lately with illness in the family and having to rewrite part of my 18 month report in order to continue with my PhD, but I am still determined to be Dr Burton!

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