Signup date: 09 Oct 2008 at 12:11am
Last login: 26 Feb 2009 at 12:10am
Post count: 35
Apparently it was only yesterday that my posts were not working, by the end of the day everything was ok. Thanks Pete for looking at it, you can delete now all my test threads, as some users seem to get a little bit nervous. And thanks Alice for trying to help me fixing the issue.
I guess I need to explain myself a little bit more, so everyone can understand completely my situation. Please don't get me wrong, I always knew I wanted to do a PhD. I finished my degree in biology, I did a masters by research (all in Barcelona) and during all those years there was an increasing interest inside me for seeing the world and living new experiences. During my undergrad studies I did short trips (one month of summer research at uni in Brazil, 3 weeks to the USA...etc). When I finished the degree I was already in research in the department of biochemistry of my uni, and my supervisor suggested that the topic could turn into a masters thesis, so I did it. During the master's year, I realised 2 things: that if I was going to do PhD I needed to be really really sure before committing, and that I wanted to see the world (again). So I managed to go on "exchange" for 6 months to a lab in Australia, hoping that things would become "clear", and by the time I got back, I would see which path I wanted to follow. Of course, life in Australia was amazing, and I realised how "low" was the research level in Spain. I was impressed in the scientific level and in the personal level. So I thought Australia was the perfect place for me, so as soon as I got on the flight back home (with the biggest sadness I ever experienced) I started to think about ways for going back. Regarding the topic, I was always fascinated by cancer biology, which is a very broad topic with infinite approaches, so you can study it in almost every uni in the world. But the consequences of going abroad were a little bit scary. Because I saw a lot of sides of biology that never appealed to me. I worked and lived on a diving boat for a week, and, as Alice says, in the "ideal world", I would become a marine biologist right now and dive the Great Barrier Reef earning $8000 a month (and they call it a "job"!). I was fascinated by a world that I didn't even know that existed before. And like this, I could tell you heaps of examples...Instead of going clear, I went more and more confusing...And I'm sure that, the more I see, the less I know. That's why I love travelling so much. But this is not the question right now. I'm 24 and I can't be supported by my parents anymore. I need to earn my own money, to feel my independence. In an ideal world, I would be rich, I would take 1 or 2 years off and travel the world. But I can't. I know a lot of people go around the world and support themselves picking fuit and waitressing. But again, my family would never agree with that, and I didn't study a degree and a masters for nothing. If your question is, if am I especially and absolutely passionated about a particular research topic that I know it would mean my whole life in the future, the answer is not. And if it sounds more appealing to study the migration of humpback whales rather than being 24/7 between 4 white walls of a lab, I would say maybe. But the ideal world doesn't exist. I've heard heaps of people complaining about the PhD life. But I like lab work, I like research, and this is what I've been doing for the past years, so doing anything else would mean going backwards, I guess. And I like challenging myself, and at the end, that's what this is about, isn't it?
Thanks Alice. What I mean by family, are parents, grandparents etc and also my close friends. I've done it before, always short-term, using every opportunity my uni had for going on exchange, but always knowing that I was going to come back. I'm 24 and single, I left a boyfriend time ago because I wanted to see the world. And I did, I've travelled so much but still depending economically on my parents, so I need to start my PhD soon and be self-sufficient. But I'm afraid, that the only world I will see will be the campus:). I know a PhD is a big commitment and for a long time, but I don't see me doing anything else. The idea of working as a research assistant doesn't appeal to me, if I do research, I want it to have a meaning for me, to think about what I'm doing and why, not only perform experiments that my boss has planned.
Thanks for the replies. Yes, I considered the option of asking for doing half or one year of the PhD in a EU country. But should I wait until I am admitted and I start my PhD or should I talk about it before with the potential supervisors, as a "condition"? How do supervisors react about this? I'm afraid they maybe think I'm too immature and recommend me to do the PhD at home, but it's not that.
For those in another country, do you enjoy life in the new country? Or it's just like the "work place"? Does anyone live more than 20-hour flight from home? How is it like?
======= Date Modified 09 06 2008 16:06:37 =======
Hi everyone! I hope that someone who is or has been in my situation will be able to help. I'm looking for a PhD in Australia. I'm from Europe and just came back 3 weeks ago from a research exchange in Australia, and I loved life there so much (and the way they do research) that I want to go back for my PhD. I got some offers from potential supervisors, but at this point, nobody around me seems to understand what I'm doing. Family and friends think that I'm crazy, that I should stay in Europe, because going to the other side of the world for 4 years means missing a lot of things. I have a big family and we have very strong links, and they won't agree if I leave for such a long time. I don't know who to talk with about that. Maybe it's true that having spent 6 months in Australia living the perfect life doesn't mean that it will be the same for a PhD. Also, if I have 1 month of holiday per year, I will have to go home, so then I have no holidays left to enjoy in Australia, so I'm not sure if it will be worth to go there if I have to be locked in the lab...And also, I don't know if I could talk about this with my prospective supervisor/s in the application process. Please give me your opinion, I'm very confused.:-(
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