Any other non-traditional applicants out there?

Forum for the GRE subject test in mathematics.
Post Reply
Posts: 36
Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2013 3:53 pm

Any other non-traditional applicants out there?

Post by boo78 » Tue Oct 22, 2013 2:04 pm

If so, maybe we can share stories and offer support and encouragement to each other.

I'm 35 and currently a part-time high school math teacher and part-time stay-at-home mom (daughters are 3 and 1). I graduated in 2002 with concurrent BSs in math and astrophysics (math GPA 4.0, overall 3.96). I went straight into grad school at Cornell in astronomy, but it didn't work out (long story there) and I withdrew after 4 years. I've spent years considering whether to go back and try again and in what field, and finally feel confident and ready to go for a math phd (probably applied). I'm only applying to Cornell this first try, because my family and I aren't in a position to make a big move next year, though if I don't get in I will probably expand my search to other schools in the NE. Competing against applicants who were born the year I started high school and are coming fresh out of their undergrad is intimidating, but I feel confident I have something valuable to contribute. My husband and his family are behind me 100% in this, as are past professors and my old Cornell adviser. My first stab at the GRE last year was a 750, 72nd percentile. Considering I had only reviewed for 4 months and just given birth to my second daughter 2 months before the test, I was very encouraged by this. I'm currently awaiting my results from the test this last Saturday. I answered 48 questions last year and this year answered 55, so I'm hoping for an even higher score.

User avatar
Posts: 34
Joined: Sun Nov 04, 2012 11:59 am

Re: Any other non-traditional applicants out there?

Post by redcar777 » Wed Oct 23, 2013 1:18 am

I'm in a similar situation--
I graduated around the same time (late '90's), was accepted to a top teir math Ph.D. program. However, I decided to work in industry instead... it was the right choice for me at the time. Recently, however, I decided that a return to research is my true passion. My rusty skills meant that my scores have not been 1st tier quality. Unlike you, I don't have very strong connections with the academic world for recommendations.

I'd be interested in talking more. Maybe we can set up a support group for us over-the-hill applicants. Please PM me and we can trade info.

Post Reply