Wanna buy a car?

I feel like I have been reduced to the life of a used car salesman. Writing letters of intent will do this to a person. It is strange that in this society we need to constantly sell ourselves as if we were trying to sell someone a used car. “Now this, sir, is a fine car. It has a fresh coat of pain and only 75,000 miles and, while it may not be as flashy as a new car, it is definitely more reliable than those new Japanese models. They just don’t seem to make things like they used to these days…” I guess it makes sense that we have to do this because of the type of economic system that we have so it isn’t actually strange. I guess it is just strange because I don’t like it.

Another thing that I don’t like is the fact that, at least at Small Liberal University, there was basically no preparation for the “how to” process of graduate school education. Gathering the information that I did get was like pulling teeth, partly because it has been a long time since any of my professors had actually attended grad school but mostly because no one could give me a straight answer. So, I used my high level of intelligence and my email account and emailed the graduate program chairs to find some answers to my questions, mostly referring to that ambiguous piece of literature known as your “Letter of Intent” (or “Personal Statement”–the distinction between the two still has not been made clear to me, so I will assume that there is none).

Now, from the feedback that I have gotten from all the grad school department chairs that I emailed, they are basically looking not for some personal, creative thing like an undergrad college essay, but more of a formal introduction to you and what you want to study. It seems that they are just trying to make sure that you a) know what wtf you are talking about within the discipline, at least to a general extent b) are serious about putting in all the work and such and not someone who wants to go to grad school so they can keep going to frat parties and trying to sleep with the freshman c)know why you want to study in that particular discipline as opposed to something else and d)would be a good fit for the department that they have vs. being interesting in stuff that no one there cares about.

So I am back to trying to sell myself based upon some glorified version of my true abilities. I am smarter than the other applicants, more highly motivated and likely to succeed. I am very easy to work with and all I do in my free time is read philosophy and classics.

I am good enough, I am smart enough and dog-gone-it, people like me.

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~ by sisypheanfeat on 22 August, 2008.

2 Responses to “Wanna buy a car?”

  1. Woohoo!

  2. I like you!!

    And I’m glad to be reading this, because you’re helping me get to know what I can look forward to.

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