Monthly Archives: August 2009

Graduate School Lost

About six months ago I applied to $UNIVERSITY to enroll in its Computer Science PhD program. I had just crammed a four year undergraduate degree into six years, as my father jokes.

Whether or not to accept admission was a deeply divisive decision for me. I got a lot of opinions from family and peers. I went searching online for advice articles. It was a lot to digest and I ended up accepting the offer in March. The internal struggle didn’t go away, but the voices around me did. In July I paid my first rent check, still uneasy.

Come August, there was a defining day – no, moment – when I realized I did not want to go to graduate school. It was so blinding that I had to get out immediately. The intensity of the feeling subsided the next day (and I cannot “reproduce” it now), but it didn’t matter. I had seen the path I truly wanted to take.

I’m omitting my reasons since I don’t want to unduly influence anyone else approaching any level of education. I’ve done this too much in the past – it’s not my place. Everyone must follow their own path, and only by stewing over the decision alone for five months was I able to get closure.

To the people who gave me the (much needed) confidence and support in getting into school, and who I subsequently inconvenienced, I am deeply appreciative. I’m truly sorry it didn’t work out.

But now that is all behind me, and as of September 1st, I look forward to doing fo’ realz what I love doing.

Very shortly: a much less emo article on tracing recursion.