RSVP! Ph.D. Workshop and a New Ph.D. Application Bootcamp This Spring

Dear students:

In addition to our semi-annual Ph.D. workshop, which is intended to provide an informational introduction to doctoral degrees and the Ph.D. application process in general, Draper will also be offering a multi-session Ph.D. Application Bootcamp in April. Designed by Professor Theresa MacPhail, this Bootcamp is an in-depth intensive that will guide students in selecting the right Ph.D. programs to apply to, as well as crafting strong, distinctive applications to each.
More information about both the Ph.D. workshop (in March) and April’s Bootcamp are below; please RSVP for both
Important: Students who wish to participate in the Ph.D. Application Bootcamp *must* attend the Ph.D. workshop in March.

Spring 2012 Ph.D. Application Workshop
Friday, March 23
6:00 – 8:00 PM
Draper Map Room

Led by Professors Mario Caro and Amber Musser

This workshop is a mini-orientation session geared towards students who are either considering a Ph.D. or those who are already in the early stages of the application process. It is also relevant to students who are interested in general information regarding doctoral degrees and those who need some guidance as to what they should be prepared for in terms of the application process. Some general issues that will be tackled are:

* How do I know if a PhD is right for me?
* Setting realistic expectations of the PhD process and future career trajectories.
* Choosing a department as well as a university that is a good fit for me.
*What to expect in terms of the contents and deadlines for a PhD application.
* Using Draper as a resource for making decisions about a PhD and a career in academia.

We encourage all Draper students who are interested in future doctoral studies and have questions regarding the same to attend this workshop.


Ph.D. Application Bootcamp

A multi-session workshop led by Theresa MacPhail

*Please note: Students *must* attend the Ph.D. Application Workshop on March 23 in order to take part in this bootcamp series. See the Draper website for more information on the Ph.D. workshop.*

Session One (Optional): Friday, April 6, 2012: 5:00 – 6:00 PM (Draper Map Room)

Students who cannot attend this session should email Prof. MacPhail directly ( so that they will be able to prepare for session two.

Session Two: Friday, April 20, 2012: 6:00 – 8:00 PM (Draper Map Room)


So you know that you want to get a Ph.D. You’ve attended the Ph.D. workshop at Draper and you’ve decided that academic life is right for you. Now the real fun begins. . .

You need to put together a great application, an application that sings your praises to admissions committees, that entices them into offering you a great admissions package. But, in order to do that, you have to know a few things first.

This bootcamp is designed for students who know that they want to go on to doctoral study. Over the course of two sessions, we will prepare you for the PhD application process by helping you to get your research proposals in shape. These personal statements are the keystones of your entire application; we can’t stress enough how much they matter to your success in gaining entry to the program(s) of your choice.

In session one of the series, we’ll spend some time discussing what you’ll need to do for session two. In sum, you’ll need to come to session one with some idea of the discipline(s) you’re interested in. You’ll also need to have some idea about the schools/cities/programs in which you can envision yourself for the next 5-7 years of your academic life. Then, we’ll discuss strategy for PhD applications and homework for the next session. WARNING: This is a bootcamp. There will be a large amount of research, prep work, and writing for session two.

In the second session, you will be responsible for bringing a draft of a personal statement with a semi-fleshed out research project to class for work-shopping and peer review. In addition, you must bring a list of your top 5 schools/programs and know which professors you might want to work with – or who might want to work with you – at each school. You should be able to explain the differences among the programs (each school typically has its own approach to the disciplines) and how you’ll craft a slightly different personal statement for each unique program.

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