I started my terminal Master’s degree program in Fall 2017. My plan was to graduate Spring 2019, and if successful, enter a Ph.D. program Fall 2019. My Master’s program is a more general program and not one that is necessary to obtain in order to proceed to my specific Ph.D. program, however, some like myself, use it as a stepping stone especially if we come from other fields (I hold a B.S. in biology which is not my current field).
In short, I did not obtain my Master’s. Due to the fact that I was immersed in a highly toxic, dysfunctional (no one has integrity and conducts unethical research) and borderline abusive department, and that both my thesis chairs left in the process, my graduation date was delayed. There were also 3 others in my cohort who didn’t graduate, and many others dropped out along the way—all for similar reasons as I. I was accepted to my top choice Ph.D. program in a different state, and thus decided to not stay behind and try to complete my Master’s (which was my back up plan). My new school does not expect me to complete my Master’s; in fact, I’d almost say that they don’t care, as they did not ask 1 single question about my program nor seemed remotely interested about it during my interview. Not needing my Master’s was confirmed by both the Admissions Department and the Records Office at my new school, and after this, I formally withdrew from my former school. My experience was so negative that I have zero plans to return to complete the Master’s at a different time. Also, at my new school, you earn a Master’s (which is in my specific field and credit based) along the way, which is nice.
My question is, is it necessary to mention my Master’s program on my CV? I’m assuming the answer is ‘yes,’ but I am unsure of how I would go about mentioning it on my CV. I was 3 credits away from getting my Master’s, and while I’m not ashamed of it, I am unsure of how I should handle it when it comes up in convos, esp. when applying to internships, etc. Do I say “degree not conferred” or is there a better way to convey this?
I’d appreciate any tips and advice. Thank you!