Accepting a PhD offer? Watch

neo_2770
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Hey,
I am currently a software engineer in Germany. Recently I have been offered a Ph.D. position in UCL. I am in doubt of leaving my job and moving to the UK. Since my job is well paid. On the other hand, UCL is quite famous and I also like doing research. One of my concern is about getting a job in the UK with a Ph.D. in CS and if jobs would be well paid or not. Any suggestion from your side would be really appreciated. Thanks,
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Mr Wednesday
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(Original post by neo_2770)
Hey,
I am currently a software engineer in Germany. Recently I have been offered a Ph.D. position in UCL. I am in doubt of leaving my job and moving to the UK. Since my job is well paid. On the other hand, UCL is quite famous and I also like doing research. One of my concern is about getting a job in the UK with a Ph.D. in CS and if jobs would be well paid or not. Any suggestion from your side would be really appreciated. Thanks,
Depends on your area of research, but I was recently chatting to the lead academic at a major robotics research lab in the UK, they had to do a special deal on RA salary to stop too many of their recent PhDs being poached by google and amazon, so it sounds like the market for advanced programming skill sets is really livley and fully international.

Whats your PhD focusing on and is that PhD position fully funded ? London has lots of attractive points, but its expensive and I really dont recommend taking on a self funded STEM PhD.
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neo_2770
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(Original post by Mr Wednesday)
Depends on your area of research, but I was recently chatting to the lead academic at a major robotics research lab in the UK, they had to do a special deal on RA salary to stop too many of their recent PhDs being poached by google and amazon, so it sounds like the market for advanced programming skill sets is really livley and fully international.

Whats your PhD focusing on and is that PhD position fully funded ? London has lots of attractive points, but its expensive and I really dont recommend taking on a self funded STEM PhD.
Thanks for the reply.
Yes, it is a full scholarship position. Although it is just for covering the living expenses(student level ).
It will be in the area of machine learning and privacy.
The thing is that the job market is really good in Germany for software engineers. On the other hand, I am afraid that I miss the opportunity of getting a Ph.D. in UCL and I regret it later.
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mnot
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(Original post by neo_2770)
Thanks for the reply.
Yes, it is a full scholarship position. Although it is just for covering the living expenses(student level ).
It will be in the area of machine learning and privacy.
The thing is that the job market is really good in Germany for software engineers. On the other hand, I am afraid that I miss the opportunity of getting a Ph.D. in UCL and I regret it later.
No one can answer this for you.

You have a well paid reliable income with potentially some great future opportunities Vs a PhD with 3-4 years of very low income on something you enjoy that will open up some fantastic career opportunities afterwards.

Only you know how valuable your job is, no doubt the PhD is a leap of faith, i guess it just depends how much you want it.
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Mr Wednesday
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(Original post by neo_2770)
Thanks for the reply.
Yes, it is a full scholarship position. Although it is just for covering the living expenses(student level ).
It will be in the area of machine learning and privacy.
The thing is that the job market is really good in Germany for software engineers. On the other hand, I am afraid that I miss the opportunity of getting a Ph.D. in UCL and I regret it later.
Ok, very topical area and a PhD from UCL plus your previous experience should put you in a really good position, as will international experience. You should also be asking your supervisor about ways to earn additional money during your PhD, e.g. by demonstrating in undergrad or MSc labs, thats usually quite well paid and a good way of both adding to your CV and helping fund your stay in London.

There are a lot of software dev jobs in London, particularly with big finance companies, we "lose" a lot of our numerical physics PhDs that way to places like the Bank of England.

Best of luck !
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neo_2770
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(Original post by neo_2770)
Thanks for the reply.
Yes, it is a full scholarship position. Although it is just for covering the living expenses(student level ).
It will be in the area of machine learning and privacy.
The thing is that the job market is really good in Germany for software engineers. On the other hand, I am afraid that I miss the opportunity of getting a Ph.D. in UCL and I regret it later.
(Original post by mnot)
No one can answer this for you.

You have a well paid reliable income with potentially some great future opportunities Vs a PhD with 3-4 years of very low income on something you enjoy that will open up some fantastic career opportunities afterwards.

Only you know how valuable your job is, no doubt the PhD is a leap of faith, i guess it just depends how much you want it.
That is true. I just wanted to have an idea about job prospects for CS PhDs in London.
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alleycat393
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(Original post by neo_2770)
That is true. I just wanted to have an idea about job prospects for CS PhDs in London.
The other thing to consider is whether you hold a British passport or not which will also affect whether you will be able to get a job or not.
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neo_2770
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(Original post by alleycat393)
The other thing to consider is whether you hold a British passport or not which will also affect whether you will be able to get a job or not.
No, I am not British nor German. Is it difficult to get a job for a non-European person?
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mnot
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(Original post by neo_2770)
No, I am not British nor German. Is it difficult to get a job for a non-European person?
Well you'll need a company to sponsor you for a work visa.

If you talented and have a strong resume these are not an issue, but if there are 100 people just like you in the UK then it will be much more challenging to get.

If you have a PhD it should not be a problem...
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alleycat393
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(Original post by neo_2770)
No, I am not British nor German. Is it difficult to get a job for a non-European person?
Yes very unfortunately.
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alleycat393
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(Original post by mnot)
Well you'll need a company to sponsor you for a work visa.

If you talented and have a strong resume these are not an issue, but if there are 100 people just like you in the UK then it will be much more challenging to get.

If you have a PhD it should not be a problem...
People with PhDs also struggle!
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mnot
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(Original post by alleycat393)
People with PhDs also struggle!
He's on about a PhD in like software/comp Sci from UCL, whilst im not in these hiring circles these seems very hot area right now.

If it was a PhD in a humanity subject id probably be more inclined to agree, but im sure a compsci PhD from UCL OP would likely have a few offers when he gets onto the job market.
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alleycat393
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(Original post by mnot)
He's on about a PhD in like software/comp Sci from UCL, whilst im not in these hiring circles these seems very hot area right now.

If it was a PhD in a humanity subject id probably be more inclined to agree, but im sure a compsci PhD from UCL OP would likely have a few offers when he gets onto the job market.
It’s not about what’s hot or not. It’s about whether the hiring organisation can find someone with the same qualifications who is British or European and the answer is normally yes. It’s also about what salary the job someone is looking for commands, in what sector, whether the employer has the right licenses and is willing to put in the time and effort required etc to hire this person. These are not shortage occupation areas either. The point is that there is a lot more to consider than whether the field is hot or not.

Do you hold a phd or have you gone through this process?
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neo_2770
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(Original post by alleycat393)
It’s not about what’s hot or not. It’s about whether the hiring organisation can find someone with the same qualifications who is British or European and the answer is normally yes. It’s also about what salary the job someone is looking for commands, in what sector, whether the employer has the right licenses and is willing to put in the time and effort required etc to hire this person. These are not shortage occupation areas either. The point is that there is a lot more to consider than whether the field is hot or not.

Do you hold a phd or have you gone through this process?
You might be right. But I assume that a Ph.D. at UCL would really worth it. Doesn't it?
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alleycat393
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(Original post by neo_2770)
You might be right. But I assume that a Ph.D. at UCL would really worth it. Doesn't it?
Only you can decided if it’s worth it or not for you. Just don’t bank on getting a job after. No one is going to see UCL and magically give you a job. All the above will still apply to anything you apply for.
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