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Rest after bachelor?

  1. Feb 16, 2005 #1
    Hi, i just finished my first semester in physics, going pretty good, so i assume that i will finish my bachelor after the normal 3 years. But the thing is, i'm an aspiring athlete as well, and i've been wanting to move to USA and train there for 1-2 years intensly and see if i can get anywhere within my sport. I decided to go to college insted of training, at least the bachelor, but i'm afraid if i wait until i finish my master, that´s 5, athleticly active years (since i can only train seriously until about 30/35 i'm guessing).

    So here's my question, do you have any experience with taking some time off after the bachelor degree? I was thinking maybe i'd take 1-2 years off after my bachelor, before going for my masters degree (don't really plan on going much further then that, but who knows what happens). I'm thinking it might be hard to go "out of the loop" for so long before going into the graduate studies, and i'm kinda afraid that my it would be hard to pick up again, plus of course all my friends would already be finished by the time i get around to my masters courses so i'll have to start from scratch with making connections with people to study with.

    The best for me would of course if i could get into school in California (close to OC) so i could both train and go to school, but i don´t see that happening financially (full scholarships as a foreigner is a ***** isn´t it?).

    Hopefully you guys have some good ideas :)

    With regards,

  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 16, 2005 #2
    I took two years off after undergrad and worked outside of science. Probably would have burned out had I gone straight to grad school. I definitely recommend taking some time off between undergrad and grad school. However, I did apply as an undergrad and deferred for two years. But I know other people who have applied after taking time off with no problems.

    Usually first year graduate students (at least in PhD) programs tend to stick together and work on problem sets. They're all starting from scratch where they don't know each other at the beginning.

    I did forget a lot of physics by the time I went back to school, but I found that it wasn't really a problem.
  4. Feb 18, 2005 #3
    Thx, i think you may be right about the burnout thing, i'm only 7 months into this, but i'm feeling it o_O There are so many things i wanna do in my twenties man, it´s killing me. I was thinking about doing the IAESTE thing too (to get work experience within physics) for some time, but that´s another year i´m not in school If i do all this i won´t finish my master until i´m 30 lol
  5. Feb 18, 2005 #4


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    Please refer to Part 6 of my essay "So You Want To Be A Physicist". I have addressed the issue of "assistantships" in graduate schools for US institutions.

    The issue of taking a break after your undergraduate degree isn't really a problem. What is more of an issue if how soon, or how quickly can you get back to speed once you decide to continue. We tend to forget, or lose our skills, on things we no longer do regularly. So this is more of a question you have to ask yourself, and not something someone else can answer for you.

  6. Feb 18, 2005 #5


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    It used to be a problem! Back when I graduated, if I had taken a "rest", I would have been rewarded with an all expenses paid trip to a beautiful south Asian country!
    Let's hope the draft doesn't come back!
  7. Feb 18, 2005 #6
    Luckily i´m from iceland (studying in denmark) :) So i don´t have to worry about drafting.

    I did read all your articles when i came to PF a few months ago :) Just re-read the assistantship one now. I must admit i don´t have the greatest confidence in myself as a TA, maybe that'll change once i finish my BS, but my fear would be that i'm not smart enough to teach to others (was kinda scared getting into physics since i didn´t really have the background for it, so i´ve kinda felt inferior here in college to many of the people here. Although i do seem to be in the upper tier of the grade scale). But like i said, granted that i´d keep getting the grades i am now, and graduate, perhaps that will change :)

    Perhaps if i do the IEASTE thing i'll have a better shot at a RA/TA since i should hopefully have some working experience.
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