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PhDs in the funny pages

It's 4 AM. Two grad students sit across the table from each other hunched over textbooks, looking bleary-eyed. One boy asks the other, "Why are we doing this?" His friend looks up and responds through a haze of exhaustion and self-pity: "You mean, why are we submitting ourselves to grad school instead of working out there, getting rich, getting enough sleep and actually enjoying life?" "No," the first boy replies. "I mean why are we doing the problems from the wrong chapter?" This scene fro

Victoria Stern
It's 4 AM. Two grad students sit across the table from each other hunched over textbooks, looking bleary-eyed. One boy asks the other, "Why are we doing this?" His friend looks up and responds through a haze of exhaustion and self-pity: "You mean, why are we submitting ourselves to grad school instead of working out there, getting rich, getting enough sleep and actually enjoying life?" "No," the first boy replies. "I mean why are we doing the problems from the wrong chapter?" This scene from the comic strip linkurl:"Piled Higher and Deeper";http://www.phdcomics.com/ (PhD) by creator linkurl:Jorge Cham;http://www-cdr.stanford.edu/%7Ejgcham/ highlights the struggles and frustrations many science graduate students experience. Cham should know. He was once in the trenches himself. "Cham captures very accurately and in a very witty way what it's like to be a graduate student in science," said linkurl:Mark Cutkosky,;http://www-cdr.stanford.edu/%7Ecutkosky/ a mechanical engineer and Cham's PhD advisor at Stanford University....

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