Today we had a visit from the dean of The Graduate school who suggested that there is a 9 year time limit to complete your degree, starting from the time you enter the PhD program. This means that a graduate student has five years to reach candidacy and four years to complete the dissertation/degree. These are the rules at UMBC but what are the rules at your university? Did you know that there are limits on how long you have to finish your dissertation? If you thought you had all of the time in the world, think again. Find out if your time is about to run out. How current is your research topic if you have been working on the topic for over ten years?
Finding the right advisor is critical to your success in and out of graduate school. The dean also provides some more insight into the mentor/ mentee relationship. In the Dissertation House today, the dean also discussed the importance of building a strong positive relationship with your mentor. She suggests that this relationship is a life long connection that will serve you throughout your academic and professional career. Because the number of people who achieve a PhD is small, the network is also very intimate. For example, if your mentor does not write you a recommendation letter for a job, this omission raises a red flag among potential employers.