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Demystifying the Dartmouth Grad Student Experience

May 09, 2019   |   The Dartmouth

"It feels completely normal to see Dartmouth’s 4,410 undergraduate students walking around every day. However, it is easy to forget that there are also 2,099 graduate students on Dartmouth’s campus," writes Yuna Kim for The Dartmouth. ...

..."Bhargava Thyagarajan, a PhD student studying physics at the Guarini School of Advanced Studies, received his undergraduate degree at the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research in Pune, India, before deciding to make the move to Hanover upon discovering what he called 'unique environmental draws' and 'niche research opportunities' here at the College.

"'Once I got accepted here, I looked up the area and thought it was a great place to live in, especially considering I love the outdoors,' Thyagarajan said. 'Also because Dartmouth has such small programs, that leads to a very close-knit community and a collaborative work environment, which I was looking for.'

"Thyagarajan said that what especially piqued his interest after growing up in India was the beautiful four-season experience Hanover offers, which was completely different from what he had been accustomed to his whole life.

"'Coming from India, I like to say we only really have three types of weather: hot, hotter and hottest,' Thyagarajan said. 'Here there’s winter, which is a whole different experience of getting outside, and I love it.'

"Unlike Thyagarajan, Mo Zhu, a master of engineering management student at Thayer School of Engineering, chose Dartmouth for the parallels he drew to his undergraduate lifestyle. Following his four years at Williams College, Zhu decided he preferred schools located in small, rural towns such as Hanover.

"Contrary to his undergraduate experience, however, Zhu said that much of his graduate student experience has taken place off-campus, with parties and other get-togethers happening in students’ apartments throughout the week. Zhu also mentioned that some MEM students occasionally meet on the weekends, playing board games and spending time together in the MEM-specific area within Thayer."

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