Students

Wedding Planned first semester of grad school

Hi friends!

My fiance and I got engaged this summer and planned our wedding for October 8th 2016. We made the decision because we needed a lot of time in advance to plan, since we both live and work overseas. The wedding will be near my family in the US, but we are planning to fly back about a month or two before the wedding to finalize the plans. The problem is that my plans have now changed and I will be starting graduate school that September! So I will definitely be back in the US before anticipated, both to plan the wedding and prepare for school.

Do you think that most programs are flexible in allowing some time off (maybe two weeks) during the first semester? What advice do you have about balancing the beginning of school with the wedding? I realize there are a lot of forums on here about this same topic, but my main concern is about taking off time and the wedding itself, not the planning. I've already done a lot of planning!

Thanks for your help :)

E

Re: Wedding Planned first semester of grad school

  • Hi friends!

    My fiance and I got engaged this summer and planned our wedding for October 8th 2016. We made the decision because we needed a lot of time in advance to plan, since we both live and work overseas. The wedding will be near my family in the US, but we are planning to fly back about a month or two before the wedding to finalize the plans. The problem is that my plans have now changed and I will be starting graduate school that September! So I will definitely be back in the US before anticipated, both to plan the wedding and prepare for school.

    Do you think that most programs are flexible in allowing some time off (maybe two weeks) during the first semester? What advice do you have about balancing the beginning of school with the wedding? I realize there are a lot of forums on here about this same topic, but my main concern is about taking off time and the wedding itself, not the planning. I've already done a lot of planning!

    Thanks for your help :)

    E
    What type of program are you going to for graduate school? I know most programs are not very forgiving at all about missing time, especially if you earn some type of stipend or scholarship for attending. Is there a reason you would need to take off two weeks for the wedding? I could see missing one class, maybe, but two would be pushing it in my program. In some of my courses that would actually be grounds to be moved down a letter grade, and as many programs are anything below a "B" was failing the course. 
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    MesmrEwe
  • I'd hold off a semester to start grad school or move your date up so that you're not during grad school.  All of the professors I know would side-eye you something fierce for the idea of taking time off, let alone a month.  You know the grad school schedule, and there isn't a lot of flex until you get to the point of working on your thesis and even then there's very little extra time.  Missing a month of time screams a waste of money, and grad school credits aren't cheap undergrad credits!  And, depending on the type of grad program you're going into, the first year is pretty intense setting the pace/expectations for the remainder of the program. 

    I'm not saying don't get married during your first semester of Grad school, just no to taking time off other than the day before or after...


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  • ViczaesarViczaesar Central Coast, CA
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    That wouldn't have been acceptable in either of my graduate programs.



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  • AddieCakeAddieCake Beyond the Wall
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    I doubt the school will consider your wedding a valid reason to miss.
    What did you think would happen if you walked up to a group of internet strangers and told them to get shoehorned by their lady doc?~StageManager14
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  • levioosalevioosa Southern California
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    Viczaesar said:
    That wouldn't have been acceptable in either of my graduate programs.
    Ditto.  


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  • It wouldn't be acceptable in my program. If my professor can video chat from China to conduct class, then us students had no excuse other than personal/family emergencies. Maybe see about moving your wedding to coincide with the beginning of fall break so you have a week off afterwards. 
  • Would not have been acceptable when I was a grad student, and now that I'm a professor it still wouldn't be acceptable for my students. If you're in a PhD program missing two weeks is not going to fly. You have readings to do, TA/GA work, research to conduct; taking two weeks off is going to put you behind and affect your performance.

    That being said I had a friend get married the first semester of grad school (and someone get married the second year during the semester). They chose long weekends and were back to classes on Tuesday. They took honeymoons over the summer (or not at all).
  • bethsmilesbethsmiles Denver, CO
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    Missing class as a grad student is really stressful! I had to miss one class my first semester because I was very sick and I really felt like I missed so much. My classes all met for 3 hours and it always flew by because those classes were crammed with tons of learning (lecture and in-class discussions). You are really expected to attend every class. Taking time off in your first semester is really not a good idea. Taking 2 weeks off is insane and a horrible idea. You will miss so much by taking that kind of time off. 


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  • thisismynickname2thisismynickname2 City By The Lake
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    I'm late to this thread, but as I work in higher education, I need to comment. We do NOT look kindly on people taking time off for a wedding. A wedding is an event that lasts a few hours. It's a party. To prioritize a few hour long event over an education program (that is costing you a lot of money) and learning for your presumed future career reflects extremely poorly on the student. Priorities, people. 
    My question to the OP if she's still around is, why do you have to be home so long to "plan"? The majority of planning takes place well before the month before the date. What if your FI went over earlier than you to wrap up lose ends, or what if you enlisted the help of a Coordinator (paid) or trusted family member?  For the courses you're signing up for, you'll need to notify them you'll be gone from lecture for x amount of time (the minimum you might need for residency in the states, maybe?) and make arrangements to get the lecture notes and make arrangements to turn in the assignments. If you get grades of B instead of A, no big deal, but failing or jeopardizing your GPA with a C over a wedding will endear you to no one in your program. 
    ________________________________


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  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston
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    I wouldn't try asking your professors for time off. If you can arrange to delay your enrollment by a semester, I think that is more likely to be forgiven than enrolling and asking for time off.
    tigerlily6
  • I know women in graduate school who have fought just to get DAYS off after giving birth. Weeks off for a wedding sounds like a no-go situation. I do know people who have gotten married over a weekend during classes, though, so it is possible. Just know it will be a weekend affair, and that's it. 
                        


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    charlotte989875
  • It depends on your program, but someone in my cohort got married in her first month in my program, and she was perfectly fine. Two weeks might be a lot... it might be tough to go on a long romantic honeymoon, but I would be surprised if people don't cut you enough slack to get married and have a few days before and after! 

    It depends on your field though; I'm in the social sciences, and lab-based fields might have more restrictive schedules?


  • It depends on your program, but someone in my cohort got married in her first month in my program, and she was perfectly fine. Two weeks might be a lot... it might be tough to go on a long romantic honeymoon, but I would be surprised if people don't cut you enough slack to get married and have a few days before and after! 

    It depends on your field though; I'm in the social sciences, and lab-based fields might have more restrictive schedules?


    That's the thing though, you aren't in Graduate school to get married. You are there to get your degree so people don't have to cut you any slack in order to do something that can easily be done during a break in the semesters or when graduate school is over. I also graduated from the social sciences and If I would have missed 2 weeks of classes I would have probably had to retake the courses and would have left a bad taste in my profs mouth about my commitment to the program. 
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  • levioosalevioosa Southern California
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    It depends on your program, but someone in my cohort got married in her first month in my program, and she was perfectly fine. Two weeks might be a lot... it might be tough to go on a long romantic honeymoon, but I would be surprised if people don't cut you enough slack to get married and have a few days before and after! 

    It depends on your field though; I'm in the social sciences, and lab-based fields might have more restrictive schedules?


    My program was very upfront about the commitment it would take.  It would not have gone over well to sign onto that commitment and then pull a bait and switch.  There are people who want to be in that program, who worked very hard to be there, and voluntarily taking off two weeks, or even multiple days, says that you are neither committed nor worthy of being there.  It will give your professors a horrible first impression, and yes, they do talk to each other. That bad impression will follow you for the rest of your time in grad school, and that won't bode well for your education, or any networking you wish to accomplish. 


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  • bethsmilesbethsmiles Denver, CO
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    It depends on your program, but someone in my cohort got married in her first month in my program, and she was perfectly fine. Two weeks might be a lot... it might be tough to go on a long romantic honeymoon, but I would be surprised if people don't cut you enough slack to get married and have a few days before and after! 

    It depends on your field though; I'm in the social sciences, and lab-based fields might have more restrictive schedules?


    I'm in the social sciences as well (communication) and I will say my program would not have given anyone time off for a wedding. Every class I took had a policy that you could only miss one class, otherwise you failed the course. So taking two weeks off would mean failing every course that semester.

    And no one should be cutting you slack in a graduate program because you failed to plan properly and prioritized a party over your education.


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