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Outfielder
02-09-2008, 12:49 AM
My sibling is at a top 5 PhD program but it is not economics, however, it is at a B-School. How can effectively leverage this? Is it good for me at all? Can I help with research and get placed on papers? What can I do?

doubtful
02-09-2008, 12:55 AM
have you been admitted to a top5 B-School? Congrats.. what are your concerns? it's not clear at all...

Outfielder
02-09-2008, 01:22 AM
No I apologize. My younger brother is a second year at a top 5 b-school. I am 3 years out of college and I am hoping to get an econ phd. How can I leverage the fact that he has this great opportunity. He is not doing, he is doing accounting.

macroeconomicus
02-09-2008, 01:26 AM
There might be some links between accounting and some subjects in economics, but overall, I just don't think there will be a rich ground for collaboration between econ and accounting. Maybe I am wrong.

asquare
02-09-2008, 02:09 AM
It doesn't provide any leverage at all. Your brother may be able to give you some insight into the applications process and the world of academia, which is great. But it would be highly irregular for you to be a coauthor on his papers, at least until you are a graduate student yourself.

Olm
02-09-2008, 02:48 AM
It will be of very little use to you, if any.

Luckykid
02-09-2008, 03:13 AM
He can do your taxes...

Roy

Outfielder
02-09-2008, 03:41 AM
i figured it would help me maybe get an RA position or he could get grad students to meet with me

signal08
02-09-2008, 03:52 AM
you should get in on your own merits, not on your bro's..... my cousin goes to harvard and my undergrad thesis adviser is the head of admissions at a top econ 10 phd program, but i'm using neither as an "easy way in."

Ancalagon The Black
02-09-2008, 04:00 AM
Well, my sister completed a double major in cs and econ from a top 5 elite LAC and worked at MIT for a year in research under UROP. I have mentioned this almost everywhere I can think of and tried to draw a parallel. I hope the name dropping helps. I also mentioned my father who is a Chicago MBA.

asquare
02-09-2008, 04:06 AM
I would be very wary of suggesting that anyone in my department hire my sibling as an RA. I'd feel enormous pressure that he work out well, and would feel responsible to both the department and my sibling if it didn't.

Academic or professional connections, such as working with your advisor's advisor, matter a lot. But purely personal connections, like friendships, friends of parents, or sibling relationships, don't matter much in admissions. I think trying to play them up can just sent the signal that 1) you don't know how things work or what matters in academia and 2) you aren't confident of your own (or your sibling's) qualifications. By all means, draw upon your connections to get more information about the general process or specific schools. But when it comes time to apply, stand on your own two feet!

AstralTraveller
02-09-2008, 04:14 AM
you should get in on your own merits, not on your bro's..... my cousin goes to harvard and my undergrad thesis adviser is the head of admissions at a top econ 10 phd program, but i'm using neither as an "easy way in."

I have the impression you have got the OP wrong. Depending on the institution, PhDs programs in Accounting are closer to PhDs in Applied Microeconomics, IO, Financial Econ, and Game Theory, than to what most people would associate to "accounting". So, maybe, if the OPs brother can get him a position as RA, he can do well, and maybe get a really worthwhile LoR.

If this is your case, Outfielder, my opinion is: go ahead and try! Maybe, if your thing is IO/Applied Micro, there's a possibility that a PhD in accounting is for you. Try to meet with Grad students, professors, and try to learn what it would be like.

IMHO, many business schools resemble econ departments. Take UCLA Anderson as an example: the policy dept is in reality a Microeconomics department, where you can learn both applied micro, micro theory, information economics, game theory, IO (you name it). And for macro and intl economics, you have Anderson's GEM department. There are tons of first-rate business schools with Econ related departments that wouldn't make a half-bad economics department by themselves (Fuqua, NYU Stern, Kellogg, HBS, Stanford GSB, Chicago GSB, Cornell's Johnson, and probably many more I've forgotten)

I know that your (Outfielder) inquiry was related to having your brother help you get in touch with people at the Econ department, not at the B-school. While it might be possible, I think it would be harder, or at least more uncertain a bet as to be helped. But give it a try. It's not like you are dressing with your sibling's accomplishments, but rather use his contacts to build your own profile and get worthwhile LoRs (as RA), or make up your mind about Grad School (by interviewing with other Grad Students).

Best of lucks :tup:

signal08
02-09-2008, 04:14 AM
Academic or professional connections, such as working with your advisor's advisor, matter a lot. But purely personal connections, like friendships, friends of parents, or sibling relationships, don't matter much in admissions. I think trying to play them up can just sent the signal that 1) you don't know how things work or what matters in academia and 2) you aren't confident of your own (or your sibling's) qualifications. By all means, draw upon your connections to get more information about the general process or specific schools. But when it comes time to apply, stand on your own two feet!


agreed!! [clap]

Outfielder
02-09-2008, 04:31 AM
Astral you have me exactly.

I am not saying I want him to write my ticket but why not network? I understand several people's response have to do with the fact that if they were slighted because someone had a connection they would be pissed. For example, if anyone here was a great student, maybe not top 5 but top 25, and their father was teaching at Harvard who wouldn't use this connection?

The world, especially the business world, is all about building a network and that is what I am asking, how can I use this as a network.

asquare
02-09-2008, 04:38 AM
The world, especially the business world, is all about building a network and that is what I am asking, how can I use this as a network.
PhD admissions work very differently than networks in the business world. IMO, you can use this as a network to gather information. It will be ineffective, or worse, make you seem poorly-informed, if you try to "leverage" your brother's position to try to win admission somewhere.

Also, not to burst your bubble, but even PhD students at top departments don't have that much influence! Your brother can introduce you to other graduate students and share his own impressions of academia. He can suggest schools for you to consider and strategies for you to try. But it's highly unlikely that a PhD student can get a job, recommendation, admission, or even hour-long meeting with a top professor for his brother. Frankly, as a PhD student, I can't imagine asking for those things for a sibling. It's just not appropriate. There's a separation between academic and professional courtesies and personal favors.

macroeconomicus
02-09-2008, 04:46 AM
Astral you have me exactly.

I am not saying I want him to write my ticket but why not network? I understand several people's response have to do with the fact that if they were slighted because someone had a connection they would be pissed. For example, if anyone here was a great student, maybe not top 5 but top 25, and their father was teaching at Harvard who wouldn't use this connection?

I don't see how this would work out. What the heck do you mean by "network"? Like co-writing papers or being RA? You will be busy enough with your program's requirements that you won't have much time to do any sort of significant work for or with anyone outside your intended research project within your program.

And why would having a father at Harvard help? First question will always be, if your son is so great why isn't he here or a similar program to begin with. Next problem is that Harvard's professors are busy enough with working with their own students. And finally, there is a big difference between having a father who is a professor of economics at X, and having a brother who is a grad student of accounting at X.



The world, especially the business world, is all about building a network and that is what I am asking, how can I use this as a network.Yes, but I just don't see why anyone from that top-5 school would want to "network" if you're not at least at the same school. They're busy working with people within that school. And if you meet the people you want to "network" with, I am sure they will judge you for what you are, not because your brother is an accounting student somewhere out there in a distant department on the other side of campus. And to meet them or collaborate with them, you don't really need to have a brother in some accounting department. (e.g. some people that interest you might visit your school to give a talk or something or vice versa)

signal08
02-09-2008, 05:26 AM
Also, not to burst your bubble, but even PhD students at top departments don't have that much influence!


this is my general impression too, at my school. the phd students here are *amazingly* brilliant, but in terms of influence.... they pretty much have none. this is NOT to say that its not worth talking to them and getting to know them (in fact, i am friends with many of my graduate student instructors)-- but it has never come to mind that i should use that relationship to "network." it comes off looking pretty shady, IMHO..... i think this might be the exact OPPOSITE for b-school however (where networking is very much encouraged).