Hi Judge Josh!
Well hello there!
I’ve been following your advice columns for a while now and like your practical approach to education. I’ve got a tough question for ya, and would appreciate your take on the situation. Here goes:
Glad to give you my 2 cents.
I’m a 35 year old Canadian and I’ve recently been accepted into a dental school in Sydney, Australia. I am ecstatic, of course, but have a conundrum. I’ve also gotten a couple of interviews at some American schools.
Now, if I go to USyd, I’ll be starting in February, a full six months before any American school. The Aussie dollar is lower than the Canadian one, a nice bonus. BUT I’m worried about *after* graduating. How important do you think the connections you make are going to be in a school after you graduate?
They can be very valuable, actually. I have done business with a number of contacts from both undergrad & grad school.
Every single job I got after I took my master’s degree was from connections I made in my program. But studying in Aus probably means that after graduating, I’ll be leaving all those connections behind. OTOH I haven’t actually been accepted anywhere in the States and pursuing interviews all over the continent is going to be pricey, very pricey, and the chances of me getting in are low. What do you think? Do you think connections are worth it?
I think you are underestimating the power of the internet in today’s society. I said I have done business with several of my school contacts – and that is true – however I haven’t been within 500 miles of most of them in about 18 years. Most of them could easily be in Australia, Tahiti, Zimbabwe or anywhere else on Earth and it would usually make about as much difference as if they were sitting on my lap. The information age – it’s a beautiful thing, huh?
What do you think – am I oversimplifying things here? Is it going to hurt him that his connections will stay down under when he moves back to Canada? Let us all know what you think!