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Old 02-15-2012, 01:10 PM
 
14 posts, read 16,694 times
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I am currently applying to grad school to get my master's in social work. I applied to two schools in Boston and two schools in NYC. I've been accepted to one of the schools in Boston and am still waiting on the other. I live in Boston now and have lived in the area for my whole life.

Depending on where I'm accepted, I may need to decide whether to go to school in Boston or NYC. I am really happy in Boston and it is familiar and comfortable. It has amazing schools, great social work programs.

In New York, there is so much to see and do. It would be a once in a lifetime opportunity/experience. It is also scary.

If I do go to NYC, I'd like my boyfriend to come with me. However, I'm afraid NYC is just too expensive and overwhelming and it will prove difficult to move our lives there. He currently does freelance web design. Will it be difficult or easier to find a job there?

He is the most important thing to me. Is NYC worth it?
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Old 02-15-2012, 01:40 PM
 
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Well, the one nice thing about being a student is that you *can* take out loans to help cover your living expenses, but it is not necessarily the best idea financially especially if you are going into social work (notoriously low starting salaries in that field). So, it really depends on personal preference- how badly do you want to live in New York? How prestigious are the programs/ internships/ job opportunities you are seeking in NY? How do they compare to the ones in Boston?

As for your boyfriend, if he already works from home and has a strong client base he should be ok, however if most of his clients are local it might be harder. Graphic design is one of those fields where networking and talent are more important than anything else. The probability of "finding a job" as in an in-house 9 to 5 in graphic design is not high right off the bat.
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Old 02-15-2012, 02:29 PM
 
Location: Astoria, Queens, you know the scene
750 posts, read 2,130,012 times
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Why not just visit NYC on the weekends if you already live in Boston? It's only like $20 return for the Chinatown bus I believe. If you already live in Boston and are comfortable, you can get all the NYC fun you need coming into town every weekend in my opinion - living here everyday isn't going to be drastically better. In fact, I live in Queens, and I only go into the city maybe 2 or 3 times a week on purpose.

Don't get me wrong, the city is still great, it's just you live close enough already that you can make NYC more enjoyable by visting on the weekends when you don't have any obligations, and you won't have to put up with the tight / expensive living conditions, deal with the cutthroat NYC workplace or deal with the urban stress.

There's a lot of competition here for both of your fields, and you're unlikely going to be able to afford a nice place in Manhattan starting out. Boston would probably be better for both fields.

I say just visit often then when you're more established, you can think about making the move. Boston is already a great city and it's only 4 hours away by car - no big deal to come down whenever you want.
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Old 02-15-2012, 02:36 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles, CA
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What's the best case scenario for moving to NYC? What do you expect to get out of it? You are correct that there is a lot to see and do, but you will be a full time student and may need a part time job just to live here. The high cost of living in NYC is a sober point. Point is, when will you have time to see and do everything else?

Stay in Boston, you have a support system there. Go with a sure thing, you can always come to NYC after you get your masters.
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Old 02-15-2012, 04:52 PM
 
Location: No Sleep Til Brooklyn
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If you aren't dying to live in NYC, there is no reason to take on the hassle. Finding a place and trying to settle in while doing graduate work will be incredibly difficult. As much as I love life here, it is hard. I wouldn't put up with it if I weren't deeply in love with the city.
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Old 02-15-2012, 05:07 PM
 
Location: Beautiful Pelham Parkway,The Bronx
8,389 posts, read 19,643,310 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jules113 View Post
.................... Is NYC worth it?
Only if one of the school's you get into is Columbia.

If that happens you will have to do some serious thinking because Columbia is the #1 school of social work in the country.Otherwise,stay in Boston because none of the other MSW programs in NYC are worth relocating for,especially from Boston.

I was in your shoes so I know what I'm talking about.I grew up in Boston and moved to NYC to get my MSW at Columbia.
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Old 02-15-2012, 05:44 PM
 
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This has been helpful advice so far, thank you!

I did indeed apply to Columbia. That and Fordham, Boston College, and Simmons. I was just accepted to Simmons.

Do you feel that going to Columbia gave you a career advantage over other schools? Did it feel like you were in an exceptional program?

Partly I feel I wouldn't be able to turn Columbia down, but part of me thinks that doesn't matter with social work. I mean I'm never going to be rich... I'm becoming a social worker because this work is incredibly rewarding
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Old 02-15-2012, 06:17 PM
 
Location: Beautiful Pelham Parkway,The Bronx
8,389 posts, read 19,643,310 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jules113 View Post
I did indeed apply to Columbia. That and Fordham, Boston College, and Simmons. I was just accepted to Simmons.

Do you feel that going to Columbia gave you a career advantage over other schools? Did it feel like you were in an exceptional program?

Partly I feel I wouldn't be able to turn Columbia down, but part of me thinks that doesn't matter with social work. I mean I'm never going to be rich... I'm becoming a social worker because this work is incredibly rewarding
Nothing to do with perceived earnings potential or anything like that.I felt that the Columbia program and NYC were the best fits for me.LOL,what social worker wouldn't want to have experience in NYC ?

Over the years though,I have come to realize that my degree from Columbia definitely gave me a big edge.

All the schools you've applied to are good though.BC is probably the next best after Columbia.
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Old 02-18-2012, 06:40 PM
 
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Anyone else have advice? It's really feeling like either decision is going to feel like the wrong one
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Old 02-27-2012, 06:40 PM
 
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I'm debating whether to move to NYC too (from San Diego). I just got accepted to the MSW program at Columbia, not I'm not sure it will be worth the money... but then again it is NYC and Columbia! I'm just waiting for a decision from my other schools.
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