Jonathan Chuah - “Choosing where to do your post-graduate study”

Jonathan Chuah

Jonathan Chuah is a Food Science student who has left the bustling metropolis of Singapore to study in New Zealand's student-friendly Dunedin.

Welcome to my latest post!

It’s a freezing cold morning today in Dunedin. The roads are icy and radio news has announced the need for drivers to be extra careful.

And guess what I've been up to lately...

I'm house sitting cats! The owners are going away for a week-long vacation, so that means I'm spending one week of my life with their cats! How exciting is that? And they've got cute names – Wilbur, Lilly, and Clarence! Awww!

Other than that, I've been busy with my dissertation. As the year is coming towards an end, I keep seeing the word 'DEADLINES' right in front of me. And that gives me an idea for what to talk about in this entry.

If you're a prospective postgrad student, it's important to consider several points in mind before committing yourself to two or three years of life at grad school. I hope you find them useful in some way. 

1. Choice of university

When it comes to your university choice, the first thing that comes to mind would be the reputation and ranking. While it's a good indicator of the program outcomes, it is equally important to consider the amount of support their students receive, such as postgraduate funding, conferences, seminars, career talks, and library resources.

2. Choosing your advisor

Having a helpful and resourceful advisor will definitely help in your progress throughout graduate school. There are many online resources showcasing the essential qualities of an advisor, with the most obvious being sharing a mutual research interest. Check those out and you will do great!

3. Department facilities 

The last thing that comes into play would be the availability of resources for graduate study. Have an understanding of the facilities available in the department. You wouldn't want to be doing research in a department that has limited facilities and resources with low technology systems, where you end up having to snatch that pipette before someone else does! Consider the number of postgraduate students, how large their department is, and have a chat with past graduates who can share their experiences. 

I wish you good luck in your future endeavours and all the best in whatever you do. Ciao!