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Okay I'm posting this here an not in the lounge since a little of it actually does pertain to the emotional effects of acne......

I was in Boston last week for to take a course on "Advanced Skin Science." My company was being cheap (actually my boss is being a bitch and didn't even ask if I could attend). So I had to pay for it myself. The course was 300$.....I spent about 50$ in gas to drive there and back (500 miles round trip), and stayed with relatives in Boston (not at a hotel).......

The course was amazing (I really know a lot about skin now) and so worth the 300$ and 12 hours sitting in my car..........

The two days after the course there was this huge seminar going on. I didn't register because it was another 600$......I was just gonna hang out in Boston and shop for the rest of the week........but a friend of mine gave me his writstband and I crashed the seminar (and the cocktail reception that followed it).....I went on a boat crusie around the Boston Harbor.......I was invited to lunches and dinners with salespeople and other cosmetic chemists for the rest of the week......I went out after the dinners to a couple clubs (This is the only branch of the chemical industry that knows how to throw a party)......

Never once did I think about my acne, which is moderate and becoming severe. I layered on my makeup and wore my hair down. Now one noticed it......I didn't even notice it in the mirror of a club bathroom (well after a few drinks)..........

I figured I'd live it up for the next few months since I'm starting schoool in September. I got into UPenn's PhD program. I get to be a college student again!!!!! But that means living on a $25,000 stipend and whatever money I can make bartending.........In 5 years I 'll have a PhD in Biochemistry........My salary will increse consdiderably and I can do more than just make makeup.........I was psyched to go back to school.....

That changed this week.......Since we have some bigmouths in the industry...... the excutive director of R&D at Chanel heard that I paid the fee for that course myself, without the support of my company (she also saw me at the cocktail reception....so she thinks I paid 900$ not 300$). She was in the class with me and was really impressed with my knowledge about skin (I ocassionally grilled the instructor).....she told me she was also really impressed that I paid with my own money and drove to Boston from Jersey myself...She gave me her card and I gave her mine..........

I heard through some friends that she is really interested in hiring me......

I'm so confused right now....

Do I want to go back to school just because I'm not happy at my currnet job or do I really want to go back to school????? Working in the industry for the next five years may push my salary well over the 6 figure mark (especially if I go to Chanel). I'm looking at a 25% salary increase just from getting hired........

80-85K a year to work or 25K a year stipend for the next five years and a PhD when it's over???????

I also have a non-compete agreement with my current company, so I can work for six months to one year if I leave my company for another cosmetic company.....but I get paid the whole time........so six moths of getting paid for not working......hmmmm......

I can't believe my acne is a factor in this decision.......I know she'll hire me acne or not, but I plan on getting Acccutane withing the next couple months.......I have insuracne that will covere it.....but what if my new insurance doesn't??? (I know the insurance from UPenn will cover it).......What about the 1 month lag when I'm uninsured between jobs??? What about my job interview? What if I'm really bad that day and it effects my confidence (can't rely on alcohol here)?......

I hate making grown up decisions....... And I can't believe I'm letting my acne be a factor........

Do I really need that PhD??????

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i say go for the money...or at least listen to your heart..we all know nowadays, it's not what u know but who u know...if u get an opportunity, strike at it..

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id go for the job, wouldnt u be able to buy accutane with the new money your earning anyway? if your insurance didnt cover it i mean.

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if i were you, i'd go. you have to let yourself go sometimes and let things happen.

and since you know so much about skin, can't you keep your acne under control at least?

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you definately should listen to your heart and make the best decision you can...the one you know deep down youll be the most happy with. getting into UPenn is a GREAT accomplishment...you can always take the job and go back to school at a later point in time, when you know more about what you want. plus, if you take this job, youll have a nice money cushion to pay for the schooling...just something to think about.

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.........and since you know so much about skin, can't you keep your acne under control at least?

Not really. My acne is cystic. The best regimen I was on was a combo of retin-a micro, duac gel and Orthotricyclen. But even that couldn't keep all the cysts away (stupid placebo week)......it just prevented the whitheads and blackeads and prevented some of the superficial inflammatory stuff at bay.....but as the weather wamed up I gt the cysts back. I also have chest and back acne too.......and my face is always an oil slick........

Given that I know a great deal about the physiology of skin and the pathology of acne you think I'd be able to figure out a way to keep mine under contol......well I haven't. knowing what I know about skin.... Accutane is my best shot by far.......( I refuse to take oral antibiotics).....

I'm still on the fence about the job/school thing.......I'm leaning toward the job.......I'm planning on getting married within the next two years......and I need a way to pay for my wedding......a 25K stipend a year buys me ramen noodles and not much else...........

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surely after you studied. you would be going for a job like that anyway...

but this way u skip the schooling

and there is no saying u cant do a night course on something similar etc.

this lady sounds very nice. she might even like you to study 1day a week or something (maybe i dont know)

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I agree, its seems as though this is the job you'd get if you had a phd. But if you take it are you planning to stay in it for life, as if you leave it other companies that don't know you so well might be asking for that phd and you might find it much harder to find a job.

Follow your heart... :D

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I think it would be really silly to not take a job thatll raise youre salary considerably and has potential for a lot of growth.... because u would rather get a phd which only has the potential to give u a better paycheck.

You can always take this new job for now, and even save something If you want, to see if you can work something in as a student part-time or something in a few years.

Its nice to hear that you sound so succesful though.

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Id be of the opionion of taking the 80K /yr job right now, those sort of chance comes along once in a lifetime.

Even if you were to get your PhD in 5yrs time that is no guarentee of hitting the big time, you would still be relying on getting that lucky break, which is what have right now in front of you.

Just my thoughts

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I wouldn't need the PhD for this job (or another job like this one). I disn't even need my other two graduate degrees (both master's) to get the job I have now. You don't need a PhD to formulate makeup, only a B.S. in Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, Biochemistry or Biology.........

I was getting the PhD to beable to change my career and go work in academic research (in the field of dermatology). My pay may actually be lower doing that then being a senoir Chemist or a Lab Manager in the cosmetics indusrty......so I'f it's money I'm after.....I should pursue the job........

The reason I want a career change is because I'm a bit dissatisfied in my current position at my cyurrent job (it doesn't help that the people I work with are a bit insensitive and tactless when it comes to my acne....remember the Ivory soap bet???).........I'm also a bit disillusionsed by the way cosmetics are marketed, and bodering on cynical..........but I can make a dam good silicone emulsions and know a lot about raw materials and formulation......and it does help to know about skin too.......

I think working for another company may help me get my motivation back........

Plus I just decided to get braces.....and need a way to pay for them.......

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I'd go for the schooling, personally. You can exist off of way more than ramen noodles on a $25K stipend. I cook myself excellent dinners every night getting less aid than that. The money is nice, but personally, I like to be in control. As a researcher, you're never going to be in control without a PhD. Keep in mind the big picture.

Of course, if you think you can enjoy the industrial work given a change of scenery, well . . . only you know the whole story and only you know what will make you happy.

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How exactly is it a gamble? Getting a PhD from an ivy-league school almost guarantees she'll get on tenure track at a fairly good research university. If that's what she wants to do, that's what she should do. It's a great gig, even if there is no guarantee that you'll ever make well over six figs, like you can doing commercial work.

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Congratulations on both counts!!!! I think both are exciting opportunities! I apologize for the over-used cliche I'm about to say...but follow your heart :D but personally- I'd probably get the Phd first.

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How exactly is it a gamble? Getting a PhD from an ivy-league school almost guarantees she'll get on tenure track at a fairly good research university. If that's what she wants to do, that's what she should do. It's a great gig, even if there is no guarantee that you'll ever make well over six figs, like you can doing commercial work.

Remember I live in Jersey.....I need the six figs just to buy a house.......

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Remember I live in Jersey.....I need the six figs just to buy a house.......

You don't have to live in Jersey. What are the chances that's where you'd end up getting a position once you finished your PhD work? Rutgers and Seton Hall and Montclair State might not even have openings at that time.

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Remember I live in Jersey.....I need the six figs just to buy a house.......

You don't have to live in Jersey. What are the chances that's where you'd end up getting a position once you finished your PhD work? Rutgers and Seton Hall and Montclair State might not even have openings at that time.

I do have to live in Jersey. My family is here. My mother is in a nusing home here. My mentally ill sister (who I often have to take care of) is here, and my boyfriend (soon to be finance) is here. His busniess is here. I have no desire to leave Jersey. I can workin Philly or NYC and commute to a work (be it at a cosmetics company or a Univesrity)......but I'm a Jersey girl.....

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how do you figure, my brothers getting one right now, a phd in applied physics or something from cornell u, an ivy league school.

And hes got no market to sell that doctorate though, even if he desired to, which he doesnt. He's not gonna make what stereotypes might think he would.

oh, and labgirl, you go to college so you dont have to live in jersey

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Go with your heart.....you've already made your decision, you don't need anyone's advice.

You're only looking for confirmation and verification that you've done the right thing.

You've already chosen your path.....JUST DO IT! :cool:

Trust yourself......no one knows what you truely want to do except you.

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.........and since you know so much about skin, can't you keep your acne under control at least?

Not really. My acne is cystic. The best regimen I was on was a combo of retin-a micro, duac gel and Orthotricyclen. But even that couldn't keep all the cysts away (stupid placebo week)......it just prevented the whitheads and blackeads and prevented some of the superficial inflammatory stuff at bay.....but as the weather wamed up I gt the cysts back. I also have chest and back acne too.......and my face is always an oil slick........

Given that I know a great deal about the physiology of skin and the pathology of acne you think I'd be able to figure out a way to keep mine under contol......well I haven't. knowing what I know about skin.... Accutane is my best shot by far.......( I refuse to take oral antibiotics).....

I'm still on the fence about the job/school thing.......I'm leaning toward the job.......I'm planning on getting married within the next two years......and I need a way to pay for my wedding......a 25K stipend a year buys me ramen noodles and not much else...........

i'm sorry to hear that.

is there any way your parents can help ya out? then you can pay them back once you're financially stable.

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Hmmmm ... maybe $80-85 K/year goes a lot further in Jersey than it does around here? That's about what I was making 10 years ago, and I was just paying the rent ... not buying a house ....

LabGirl, you can do any damn thing you want to. I can see why the quick money would be tempting right now, but wouldn't the Chanel job just be same-old, same-old in a little while? And where would it take you? If your heart is in research ... follow your heart. If not ... well, go with the flow!

Maybe you'll be launching your own cosmeceutical line one of these days ... now, that's BIG money. :)

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Don't take San Fran prices to be representative of what a place should cost, Lion Queen. Living on a tiny peninsula or island, for whatever reason, seems to inflate the real estate value a bit. Outside of Manhattan and Tokyo, you aren't going too many other places where $1 mil buys you a one-bedroom apartment.

Shit, I went to school with a girl from Kazakhstan, whose family owned a 22-bedroom house there, that was worth 20,000 USD.

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Don't take San Fran prices to be representative of what a place should cost, Lion Queen. Living on a tiny peninsula or island, for whatever reason, seems to inflate the real estate value a bit. Outside of Manhattan and Tokyo, you aren't going too many other places where $1 mil buys you a one-bedroom apartment.

Oh, I'm well aware of how crazy the prices are in the Bay Area (not just SF). We are on the verge of putting our Oakland Hills house on the market, so the craziness is actually working for me (for a change). I just don't have a clue how prices here compare to Jersey ....

Anyway, housing prices were kind of beside my point. If LabGirl really wants to go to grad school ... well, now is probably the time. It is easier, IMO, to shift down from a lifestyle based on $65K to one based on $25K than it is to go down from $85K to $25K ... especially if a mortgage becomes part of the picture. I am sure she will be a great success at whatever she does .... but sometimes delayed gratification can result in larger payoffs, both personal and financial.

But this is one of those crossroads when you just have to go with your gut. :)

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