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Recently, a friend confided in me that she really loved research and wanted to be immersed in it all her life. Her perception was that in order for that to happen, one of the pre-requisites was obtaining a Ph.D. She was equating a terminal research degree with an endpoint that may just be an erroneous conclusion. But this made me wonder about the reasons that make people decide to choose the path to a Ph.D. This takes me back to the crossroad in my life where I had to make the decision to be or not to be a Ph.D. I had an older and wiser cousin whose career path I seemed to be following – rather coincidentally, but maybe with some degree of choice. She had already finished her Ph.D. by the time I rolled around ...