To tell or not to tell

I’m pretty happy about how things are going recently.  I got into grad school!  Seriously, I pinch myself every time I think about it.  Thus far I have only gotten an acceptance letter from my undergrad institution, but it was my first choice so I am going to put in the paperwork to accept soon.

I also am currently employed and therefore spending time outside of my apartment. I also have a small income in which I can pay my loans and bills with.  I can’t say I love my job, but I am thankful to have it.

So here’s my little dilemma.   I don’t know when to tell my boss that I am quitting to attend grad school.  In reality compared to the problems I could have, this is a good one to have. When I interviewed for the position, I had received 3 no’s for grad school and had not received my acceptance letter from undergrad institution.  I was working under the assumption that this position would be a long term one.  I interviewed for an entry level (sales associate) job, but was offered a slightly higher paying job.

So do I tell my boss I am leaving in August to go to school now or just give my 2 weeks?  Part of me wants to tell her now, because if I were in her position I would like some time to find someone else to replace me. Also, if I tell her now, I don’t have to filter what I say and make sure I don’t mention school.  My boss seems to be great (I’m only 2 weeks into the job) and seems to be truly interested in providing my the best training and job development opportunities available.

Part of me wants to wait until I August and only give her my 2 weeks.  It’s an hourly job, so technically I could quit that day, but I feel like that’s rude since I know ahead of time that I’m leaving.  I sort of fear that if I tell her early that I will not be treated as well as I could if I tell her early.  I mean, why invest time in training someone who is going to leave?  Since I plan on being in school for a while, I won’t need my boss as a reference and she most likely will not be contacted to ask about my job so telling her last minute will not influence my career.

I talked to my dad about this recently.  He doesn’t work in retail but he does work in business so he knows more than I do about this stuff.  He recommends that I wait until August to tell my boss that I am quitting.  He mentioned that at most hourly jobs both employers and employees can end the position “at will” (mine included).  This means that I can quit my job for any reason, but more importantly my employer can fire me for almost any reason.  So if they see that I am not worth the investment, they can fire me.  He also said that since I plan on giving my employer the best service I can give until I quit that I should not feel guilty for not telling them.

So right now I think I am going to wait to tell my boss about grad school until August.  I feel a little dishonest about it, but it’s best for me financially.  Do you think that this is a good idea?  I would love to hear what others have to say.


About myscientificlife

Welcome to myscientificlife! I recently completed my undergrad at State University. I am currently taking a year off of school and applying to graduate schools. This lovely blog is mostly about my journey towards grad school and other things I find interesting, such as food, podcasts, and books. Probably mostly food. You can reach me at
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2 Responses to To tell or not to tell

  1. I think you’re Dad’s given you good advice in this case, especially since you’re only 2 weeks into the job. Not sure how it works where you are exactly, but in Canada, the first three months are often thought of as a probationary period — meaning that your employer doesn’t need valid reason to fire you if you don’t have a contract. If you let them know you’re not planning to stay on with them, who’s to say they won’t hire someone else as soon as they find them? Just my two cents. 🙂 Congrats and good luck with grad school!

    • Thanks! Yes they may hire someone else before I want to quit, good point. I don’t know if my position has a probationary period; I think the firing “at will” is applies during the entire time of employment here in the US.

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