Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Odd situation

  1. Apr 3, 2005 #1
    Ok, heres my situation. Most of the people on here seem like they are pretty straight shooters, but perhaps there is someone out there can give me some advice. I finished my bachelors in CS in 2001, but after graduation was unable to find employment despite having internships. So I took up a job substituting in a high school for a bit, but didn't like it. After that, I started working for one of my brother's friend's mortgage business, but that really didn't work out either, as deals weren't coming in and its a 100% commission job (I was a loan officer - essentially a sales job).

    After that, I decided that I would return to school and see if I could get into a grad program. I thought about CS, but my grades as a undergrad weren't spectacular so I thought I would look into another field. So I started taking courses in chemistry, hoping to get accepted into grad programs in chemical engineering. I will have completed organic and physical chem but the end of this semester. I recently heard back from the programs I applied to with rejection letters, one of them being my alma mater. There is still one more to go but it is the best program of the three I applied to and it seems incredibly unlikely

    I was wondering if anyone thinks it would be wise to continue with chemistry, or try to find something else to do. The thing is my hearing loss, which is pretty severe now, seems like bars me from alot avenues of employment. Any job whose function is primarly social is extremely difficult. for me. Some of my brothers also have this loss and one of them is a professor, but it seems like the time to do that has come and gone for me(I just turned 26). It seems like deaf/hard of hearing individuals are either very successful or dishwashers(especially those born completely deaf). There seems to be no 'middle-ground' for these people. I would do something more pedestrial like secondary teaching, but I don't think school systmes want individuals with the amount of hearing loss I have.

    I have been meddling around with 3d graphics and would love a job in the games industry, but again that seems like it would be a tough sell as it is extremely competitive and seems like younger types.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 12, 2005 #2


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    We have laws that prevent discrimination based on disabilities! Your hearing loss shouldn't be an issue, as long as you're willing to put in the effort to find a way to compensate, be it by getting an interpreter for your classes, or spending extra time going over notes others take during class so you don't miss material you can't hear. Do you have a hearing aid or the ability to read lips? Either can help (I had a student who used a hearing aid, but still needed to supplement with reading lips, and the only extra accomodation she needed was to make sure people faced her when talking so she could read their lips).

    I'm wondering why you only applied to three programs? That seems like you're limiting yourself quite a bit. If you enjoy chemistry and do well in it (which you really didn't state in your post), then by all means continue to pursue it. If you don't like teaching and/or feel your hearing loss would present challenges to interacting in a classroom setting, then you can focus on a research-track career. Age isn't an issue either. Grad programs have students of all ages. Some enter straight from college, others work for a while first, others are doing a mid-life change of career, etc.

    What might be holding you back at this stage is your own uncertainty. If you haven't convinced yourself of what you really want to pursue, then you're going to have a hard time convincing an admissions committee. So, only you can really decide if chemistry is something you want to continue to pursue.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook