Advice for PhD seeking
I am currently a junior undergraduate student at the University of Washington and plan to pursue a PhD in the genomic sciences. I have experience in research, with over a year in three different labs. However, I am worried that my major makes me a less competitive applicant to programs such as Genomic Sciences. I am majoring in Public Health with minors in Bioethics and Anthropology. I was wondering what do you suggest to make myself a more competitive applicant? Are there any projects I should take on to demonstrate my skills? #graduateschool #bioinformatics #research
It seems that you are facing a dilemma.
However, before I go further, I want to reassure you that getting into a PhD program is not an unreachable goal. Your background may not be a drag either. I can see that with your major in public health, you probably have a very good understanding of statistics. This is a huge advantage. Many PhDs, even some professors, don't have a good understanding of statistics. If you also have research experience and a good GPA, that's sufficient to get into a decent graduate program.
If you want to go to Ivy League schools, here are a couple of things you can do.
1. find a technician job in a lab in the school you are interested in and work there for some time before you apply. People tend to recruit people they know.
2. do summer research at schools you are interested in.
3. work as a research assistant in a genomics lab. Your recommendation letter from your employee will confirm your skills. I know JAX laboratory hires undergraduate interns. Have you checked here?
Let me know if you have any further questions.
Your undergrad major may not be genomics, but its still very relevant. if clinical genomics/genetics interests you, that will be a really nice combination.
Intern/co-op/temp jobs at academic labs doing genomics is a great way to develop contacts and get exposure. I would add, look into pharmaceutical industries as well, they have tons of temp jobs, could be nice to get applied experience as well.
PhD genomics should not be hard for you to find, will say wait for the right one to come along, rather than jump on to first opportunity you see.