OK, here is the deal:
I am a computer science student in Turkey graduating this June. I have applied to PhD programs in the US to work in computer architecture. I have a decent bachelor's degree, and my college is reasonably respected. Before admissions, I contacted some professors, and they seemed very interested in my background. During admissions, I was interviewed by some other professors. However, it turned out that there was only one offer with a scholarship, which I decided not to accept. (You may ask why I didn't opt for that one, the response may make the issue personal. But at least I can say that I didn't waste a resource that can be used by someone more enthusiastic about it.)
Now, I am in the middle of nowhere. The opportunity to work in computer architecture in my country is really small. During my bachelor's studies, I took all computer architecture related courses, even graduate ones. Plus, I almost missed all the graduate program admissions in Europe (with scholarships).
What do you think are my options? My idea is to get into a graduate program and be an academic.
- I may start a master's degree in my country, but the area most professors teach that most relates to my studies is embedded systems. In fact, I doubt whether this may take me away from my intentions.
- I can reapply during spring term admissions. (I have been told that these admissions are way more selective than during the fall term and this brings extra financial cost.)
- I may work in the industry for a year, then reapply. (But how about my new profile for admissions? Plus, who wants someone, who is probably leaving soon, to hire?)
So I need some serious advice.
Here is some information about me: I have 3.6 overall and 3.85 major GPA. 6 different people have written references for me.
Do you want to go to industry or academia?
Turning down a scholarship to reserve the money for someone more "enthusiastic about it" sounds at odds with "my idea was to ... be academician [sic]".
If you want to work in industry, unless it's for some deep part of, for example, Google or AT&T, I would recommend getting a Master's wherever and begin getting real-world experience.
If you want to be an academic (and so almost absolutely need a PhD) then you should find people from Turkey who did something like what you are trying to do and get in contact with/ emulate them.
At the risk of being provocative and with the caveat that I doubt this is the main issue, your message gives the sense that money is an issue. It is for many of us- but consider if you conveyed that in an unproductive way as you tried to get admissions to graduate school. Some in academia are touchy about that.