I am done with my MS in EECS from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, and I currently working full time in a good company on OPT.
I will be defending my MS Thesis in coming December. Moreover, when I contacted one of the well-renowned Professors in my department he expressed his interest in taking me as PhD student depending if his funding is approved in next few months.
Here is the issue:
My overall GPA is 3.43 and my core GP is 3.5. I had already mentioned this to the Professor, and I straight away told that after working hard I am just a solid B+ student that too when I study with friends. I sent my transcript to him thinking he would turn me down based on my GPA, but he did not.
My question is: I don't have issues with quitting the well-paying job for the PhD program. But what scares me is the oral qualifying exam. If I don't make through the exam, and they decide to kick me out, I have no options. I will no longer be enrolled in the PhD program, and cannot go back to the industry as I have used up my OPT.
My future goal is to join academia, but if I don't pass the qualifying exam, I will put my family and me in immigration issues. So, least I can do is to work in industry and give up on joining Ph.D. At least I will not put my family at HUGE risk of getting kicked out of the US after spending so much on MS program.
Please advise. The reason I ask this question is that one must aware his limitations. When I compare myself with fellow PhD classmates, they way better than me in course work. I have never met any classmate in my graduate school who are less smarter than me.