Thursday, August 20, 2009

I am a P.H.D student!!!! and I have a box!!!

Like so many wonderful things that have happened to me in my life this happened at the absolutely last possible moment. A couple of weeks ago when I applied to graduate with my undergraduate degree the undergraduate advisor told me that I had a strong application to the graduate physics program. I had been planning on applying to the physics program as well as the math program at the U but according to the application requirements of the physics prorgram they need a physics subject GRE before they will review the application. Apparently this is not actually the case, I finished up my application that I had been intending to put in and a little over 2 weeks later I found out I was accepted. Today I read this letter and went through all the necessary paperwork to become a real grad student.

August 18, 2009

Timothy Anderton
1031 E. 200 S.
Salt Lake City, UT 84102
Dear Timothy Anderton,

We are pleased to inform you that the Admissions Committee of the Physics Department has /recommended/ to the Graduate Admissions Office of the University of Utah that you be admitted to our graduate school. The Graduate Admissions Office/Student Admissions should soon formally notify you of your admission to the University of Utah.
We are also pleased to inform you that we have recommended that you be awarded a teaching assistantship for the 2009-10 academic year. The stipend for the 2008-09 academic year was $12,107 for a Level I position and $14,131 for a Level II position for a nine-month period. You will also receive tuition benefits to cover the cost of tuition. The tuition rate for an in-state graduate student is approximately $4,600 per year. Therefore, this offer is worth approximately $19,000 per year. In addition to these nine month stipends, there are a few additional summer stipends available and you will be able to apply for one of these; they run at ~ $2,000 each. We have also contracted through the Graduate school for a subsidized graduate student insurance program that you will have the option of purchasing (the Graduate School pays 80%). We have recommended you for a Level II position based on your previous experience.

We would like to point out that new graduate students in the Physics Department need to pass a general, comprehensive Physics Common Examination within their first or second year of graduate study before they are formally admitted into the Ph.D. program. The Common Exam will be on Saturday, August 22, 2009 and all incoming students must take it at that time. Those passing the exam are automatically classified as Ph.D. candidates. Those not passing have the option to take the exam the following year. Copies of previous years' exams are available on our website at
Please let us know by */as soon as possible /*whether or not you accept this offer*. *Please send notification of your decision to Jackie Hadley by regular mail at the address listed below, by e-mail at or by fax (801) 581-4801. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact Jackie Hadley at any time.

We sincerely hope you will accept our offer, and we are looking forward to having you join our graduate program.

Wayne Springer
Associate Professor
Chair, Admissions Committee

What they don't tell you on the letter is that I get a box in the department that people can slip stuff into and I can take stuff out of. I know this doesn't seem like that big of a deal but it is a tremendously big deal to me. I HAVE A BOX!!! it has my name on it and it sits near the front office of the physics department. I will also be getting an office somewhere (which I bet I will have to share with someone) somehow even though this is even more amazing it doesn't seem to have the same resonance that having a box does. An office is just somewhere to sit, the box represents to me that I am somehow open for business academically. Leave your homework here and I will get to it.

The T.A. is:

P.S. The common exam is scaring the crap out of me, I have only been studying for it since Wednesday and I go into the exam with nothing but a couple of pens. In the past couple of days and in the next few days I need to relearn about 30 credit hours worth of stuff... If I weren't so extraordinarily giddy about being admitted and getting paid to be a grad student I would still be studying instead of writing this post. Speaking of which I only have 40 hours 9 minutes and 10 seconds left to study!!! g2g


Sujal said...


So do you get to choose which class you teach/TA for, or is it decided by the department?

ma~ said...

It is the department which decides though I do have some degree of influence. I didn't have any influence this time since I basically am coming in after basically all the TA positions have been filled. I was surprised that I got anything after coming in so late.