Eek I’m a PhD student!

Well technically I’m a MPhil student, since you first register fro that and then apply for an ‘upgrade’ at the end of the first year. Checking some old text messages I was amused to find how they tracked the ups and downs of my application, interview and offer and gave me some reflection on the journey before I turn and look towards the path ahead.

Evidently I was very nervous about the interview:

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But I wasn’t alone:

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I hadn’t! In part because I’d fallen into my old trap of “ignore it and hope it goes away” but also because I had been distracted my a new job I had just started! Anyway after some interview advice / pep talk the next day was interview time which was one of the most stressful things I have done so far. I was placed second, but to my delight the first choice candidate declined and a month later I received an email offering me the PhD scholarship:

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So six months later I have started my PhD. Predictably I’m stressed! It helps that I have some familiarity with both Imperial College and the Museum but the start of term at university is not an autism-friendly time, the campus was very busy with fresher’s week stands, and I didn’t feel up to looking around with all the crowds. However in the PREDICTS lab I feel I am settling in ok, I have attended lab meetings which are useful to hear what everyone has been up to and share recent papers. I am still feeling rather lost, but it is improving every day. I’m trying to remember how I felt when I first started in the soil group, did I feel lost and like I didn’t belong? I can’t remember, but if I did it must have gotten better, so logically it will again.

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