I normally would have put this in the grad school section, but the question is more pertinent to choosing a career path. So basically at one point in time I was in a graduate program. I left pretty early due to funding issues as well as some personal issues that I needed to resolve. I ended up in industry - where I have been for the last two years. I did pretty good in undergrad: 3.44 cum, 3.65 major GPA plus a time consuming extra curricular activity involving UAVs (not quadcopters, we built actual planes!). I found that I really enjoyed the academic environment. School was the first place that I really felt like I fit in - I was "riding the wave" so to speak. My life had never gone smoother. Unfortunately grad school didn't go as smooth, so I left. That was a long story in itself so Ill spare you the details. This year I decided to try again and apply to PhD opportunities. There is a very strong chance Ill have an offer with good funding. This offer will be working on nonlinear dynamics and control of UAVs - right up my alley! So, my concerns: 1) I don't want to be disillusioned. I absolutely hate sitting at a desk all day. I hate being swamped in paperwork doing mostly uncreative garbage. I hate corporate culture, I hate having a strict 9 to 5 routine, and I really hate having so little time to pursue what I enjoy. Yes, financially I am doing ok, but without having the time to enjoy my work, whats the point? And I hate being watched/having no privacy all the time (currently work in a cube farm). What I am worried about is going to grad school, doing my PhD, and ending up in a similar spot that I am now. 2) Ill admit I am pretty scared that grad school wont go so well again. I left because the biweekly stipend was too low (600/month) and would require me to take out loans to pay for living expenses. Also, I had some personal problems with PTSD which made me question why I was going in the first place, and that spiraled into depression. 3) I am wondering if I should even stay in engineering at all. Like I said, I love math and sciences but I cant stand engineers. I think that is the worst part of my job actually. I hate being around anti social people. A lot of them are very boring or lack life experience - making them naïve. These aren't malicious attributes, but as someone who likes to have fun, is outgoing, and has been down some interesting roads in life, I find the engineering social circle miserable. I've thought about being a bar tender and working on my projects in my free time. Or opening up my own gym and continuing my studies in my free time. Both require more money than I have at the moment. 4) the student debt is a bit of a concern. My loan balance will balloon due to interest, but if I get a higher paying job my debt to income ratio might actually be lower, so I should theoretically be in a better financial position. This is contingent on getting a good paying job though or by some miracle the debt disappears. So..what should I do haha??