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AREStudentHopeful
11-09-2010, 12:52 AM
I thought I'd throw my profile out there both to assess my chances and see if there's any schools I may have missed. Quite a few of my choices (and not-chosen schools) are due to locational concerns about having a medical school near where I'm applying to for my significant other. Without further ado, here's the profile:

PROFILE:
Type of Undergrad: B.A. in economics from a satellite state school (state LAC essentially)
Undergrad GPA: 3.35, 3.7 in econ
Type of Grad: M.A. Agricultural and Resource Economics from a large state school
Grad GPA: 3.55
GRE: 780Q, 590V, 5.0AWA
Math Courses: Calc I-III (C, B, B+), Linear Algebra (A), Axiomatic Systems-Intro to Proofs (A), Intro to Stats (A), Advanced ODE (in progress, expected B+/A-)
Econ Courses (masters-level): Micro, Math for Econ, Applied Metrics, Agricultural Production, Water Economics, Research Methods in Economics, Natural Resource, Macro (spring), Environmental (Spring)
Econ Courses (undergrad-level): Intro to micro, intro to macro, intermediate micro, intermediate macro, advanced macro, environmental, natural resource, comparative systems, developmental, money and banking, econometrics
Other Courses: Many environmental science courses
Letters of Recommendation: 5 econ professors (1 Davis ARE, 1 U Colorado, 1 Berkeley ARE, 1 NC State, 1 U Chicago) depending on what school I'm applying to based on their connections
Research Experience: RAed for an econ prof in undergrad, worked as an RA both years of my masters including one project that I'm getting published in a low-tier journal, masters thesis
Teaching Experience: TA for intro to micro and natural resource econ
Research Interests: Environmental is the main one, plus behavioral, urban and game theory on the side. I'm actually one of the few ARE-type people who enjoy theory.
SOP: In the Process of rewriting the one from 2 years ago - will be good-quality and fit to the programs.
Concerns: Not as stellar math grades as many of you, low undergrad GPA, semi-low grad GPA, no RA (a sin on this forum!)
Other: Applying for NSF
Applying to: UCSD, UCLA, Duke, Georgetown, Berkeley ARE, Maryland AREC, UCSB, Davis ARE, Rutgers, U Colorado, Arizona State, U Arizona, U Wyoming, NCSU

Let me know your thoughts!

Canuckonomist
11-09-2010, 01:27 AM
I like your diversity in LORs depending on the school. That's a smart move, and I wish more people had the foresight and/or number of letter-writers to do it. I don't know much about ARE, so I can't say anything there. You could hit Duke, I imagine. They're a random admitter, and someone I know with a profile only slightly better than yours was admitted to Duke, and they had less math overall. UCSD and UCLA, however, may admit you, but I think you'd be hard-pressed to get funding. If you're a Californian, perhaps you can get in-state tuition? If so, then perhaps that's not an issue. Just something to think about with those schools. Same might go for the rest of the UC system, but I don't know anything about ARE, as said earlier.

Also, as I always plug Canada, UGuelph is the ARE school here, and it has two med schools near by that are top schools here (McMaster and UToronto). But of course, how nearby might be an issue.

Best,

Canuck

AREStudentHopeful
11-09-2010, 02:41 AM
I'm actually willing to go to one of my top choices without first year funding, so the 2 UC programs wouldn't be a problem (I know Davis ARE and UCSB are funding all of their PhD students last I checked). In my mind, it's worth the investment (aka, loans). I'll also break down the schools I'm applying to, in order to clarify:

Dreams: UCSD, UCLA, Duke, Georgetown, Berkeley ARE
Target: Maryland AREC, UCSB, Davis ARE, Rutgers, U Colorado, ASU, U Arizona
Safety: Wyoming, NCSU

I appreciate your vote of confidence for Duke as that would probably be my top choice of the bunch, though I don't know if I'm as confident of my chances. UCSD and Berkeley would also be up there. Although I am very familiar with ARE schools, am attending an ARE masters, ect., I think I would actually be happier in an econ department for my PhD. I enjoy the diversity of topics, would like the exposure to macro (though I know most ARE schools will let you take the macro sequence in their econ department) and generally like the greater diversity of training. I did rather enjoy the macro classes in my undergrad :). I've actually met a professor from Guelph at a conference with whom I had a great conversation, but I don't think the exact topics of focus there match my interests (and I couldn't find any placement records when I checked on their website).

Canuckonomist
11-09-2010, 03:05 AM
If money ain't too much your worry, mate, then you're going to do just fine. I hope the two of you end up close together, as it'd be hard being apart for so many years. My girlfriend and I are fortunately still together here at Toronto. We'd already been together half a decade when I applied, so being apart after that seemed too difficult a task. There are only so many things that prestige and good funding can best, and love isn't one of them.

AREStudentHopeful
11-10-2010, 01:49 PM
Thanks again, I hope the stars align in the 'ole admissions sky this year :). Any other opinions?

econm
11-11-2010, 04:52 AM
Why isn't UIUC Agricultural Econ on your list? I have a contact there. The word is that they fund 100% of admitted students, including masters students.

AREStudentHopeful
11-11-2010, 08:17 PM
I took a look at their program and my main problems are that they only have one person working on the topics I'm interested in and their placements aren't all that great (particularly for the environmental/resource candidates). As for funding I actually think it may be more common in ARE programs than in econ programs to have all incoming PhD students funded (masters students are another matter). It is a fringe benefit of getting land grant money I suppose.