I have been accepted for the doctoral program at a university which is offering me TAship for the 1st six months and RAship for the next six months of my 1st year.. Is this a common practice? Does this have any significance regarding the availability of funds at the university? Group members? What do you think?
Is this a US university? What type of program is it? PhD? Are you expected to fund your next 4 years or find a professor with a grant to support you? In the US at most places you have to TA one course after you pass your comprehensive exam to repay them the first year of your stipend. After that, your PhD mentor covers the stipend or you look for and apply to fellowships.
Yes, it is a US university.. PhD program.. I've been told that after the 1st year, the PI whose lab I will be joining will provide the stipend..
That's pretty standard then. Just be sure there are at least 4 or 5 people there you'd like to work with and that they have money to support you for the duration of your PhD!
Thank you Brian.. Since I have no way of knowing about the funding till I actually get there, I guess I have no option but to wait and see..
You can always e-mail researchers you're interested in rotating with and ask!
Oh ok.. Thank you Brian.
As Brian said, this is pretty standard. It's important to have options, but I would say 3 PIs you think you'd like to work for is sufficient. Also as Brian said, you can contact PIs directly, asking if they will be accepting students your year. Some programs will not allow PIs to accept new students if they can't guarantee sufficient funds to support them.
Oh and check those PI's out on NIH Reporter (if they are NIH funded) to see what their money situation is (history of funding, number and type of grants, total awarded amounts, and when they are going up for renewal). Congratulations.
Thank you BB and GR for your helpful suggestions.. I will follow these before I make a decision..
I'd also check in to NSF funding if the PIs you are interested in work on problems that aren't necessarily disease/human health- related.