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Rackham Graduate School will be closed for the Memorial Day holiday from 5:00 p.m., Friday, May 25 to 8:00 a.m., Tuesday, May 29.

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Stories, blog posts, and more illuminating the experiences of graduate life and highlighting the impact of our students’ critical research.

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Got funding? Say thanks!

Wanda Hung, M.S., Computer Science and Engineering, is a busy working mother of two young children. If you’ve received funding from Rackham, there’s a good chance that some of it came from Wanda and alumni like her. She told us: “I fully support Rackham because my husband I were really grateful we were both able to get funding so we could go to grad school together. It can be so costly to pay for by ourselves. We were really grateful we were able to go at the same time; that’s why we want to give back and hope to help people in the same situation.”

Time Trials

I am not a “typical” graduate student (if such an elusive creature exists). I live over an hour from Ann Arbor, have 3 children, a husband, a dog, and a busy practice as a Nurse Practitioner at University of Michigan Hospital- all while being a Ph.D. student, and current Ph.D. candidate.

I thought I’d show you what a recent Thursday looked like for me:

04:40 Try to wake up. Eventually get dressed, pack breakfast and lunch for myself. Make sure that my 4th grade son has his daily planner signed, snacks for the day ready, and boots packed. Leave wipe board notes to my husband for anything else. Start a load of laundry, so my son has his martial arts uniform for later. Coffee automatically brewing.

My Story of Depression in Grad School

There came a point for me, during my fourth year, when things just bottomed out. I wasn’t teaching or taking classes, since I had just become a candidate, which meant I had a year of fellowship to get going on my dissertation. I’d been struggling for a while with a generally manageable level of stress and anxiety and what (looking back) I now realize was depression. None of this seemed unusual though, because grad school is a stressful environment to begin with, and it’s so easy and common for anxiety to develop over 5-7 years of graduate school. When everyone around you is generally stressed and often dealing with anxiety to varying degrees, that starts to seem normal and you don’t think much of it.