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December 8, 2022

Filed under: Journal — Milind Kulkarni @ 11:45 pm

So some of you have heard this news already, but I figured I might as well disseminate it to all of you at once rather than wondering who I’ve told and who I haven’t. The short form of it is this:

I’m leaving Cornell.

Of course, the long form isn’t quite as drastic as that sounds. The general story is this: My advisor has decided to leave Cornell (and the long form of that really is as drastic as it sounds), accepting a position at the University of Texas (at Austin). He’ll be starting there next semester, and moving down there some time this summer. This, of course, puts a major crimp in my previously-held view that I would be living in Ithaca until my degree was completed. Instead, I, too, will be moving down to Austin so I can continue working with him while pursuing my degree.

The first question most people seem to ask upon hearing this news is “Are you still getting your degree from Cornell?” And the answer is, as always, “Yes.” Basically, I’m going to be living and working down there, but will remain a Cornell student (and hence why it’s not quite as drastic as leaving Cornell). I’ll even have the joy of flying back to Ithaca in two years (or whenever) to give my thesis defense. So the upshot is: All the benefits of a Cornell education without having to actually deal with living in Ithaca.

The second question people ask is “How do you feel about moving?” And this one doesn’t have as pat an answer. I have conflicting feelings. In many ways, I’m very, very excited to be moving to Austin. In terms of things to do, Ithaca doesn’t hold a candle to Austin. I’ve gone to Austin before for a job interview and remember coming back and thinking that I definitely wouldn’t mind living there, and now I get the chance to. Until I decided to come to Cornell, I don’t think I ever contemplated living in Ithaca.

The downside to moving to Austin is more or less the same downside as all other moves. After living here for four years, Ithaca has become my home. I’ve put down roots here and would have to leave a lot of friends behind. That’s always the hardest part. Not to mention finding some place besides Shortstop to go to for lunch on weekends. Also, I have to move out of this apartment, which I had planned to keep until I graduated, continuing my trend of moving every, single, freaking year. Bah.

Final good point: Austin is more accessible, so all you folks can come (and better come!) visit me easily. It’s warm, it’s fun, and if you come during SXSW, I promise you that we’ll never fall into the trap of trying to figure out something to do.

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