My apologies if this is covered in a different thread, but I couldn't seem to find one that addressed applying for graduate studies on cephalopods. Briefly, after getting undergraduate degrees in math and biochemistry from Texas A&M, I went to graduate school at University of Texas for neuropharmacology. I have worked as a lab assistant in a genetics lab and an electrophysiology lab. I also did a summer internship in a neuropharmacology lab in Kansas. Unfortunately, I dropped out of grad school for personal reasons, then got a graduate degree as a chiropractor and did that for 10 years. For the past 2 years I have been living on a boat in the West Indies, observing cephs through snorkeling and scuba diving along the island chain. My tentative plan is to be here in the Antilles for another year or so and then move, possibly to Europe. I'd like to enroll in a graduate program studying cephalopods and am flexible about the project, though I think my background makes me better suited to genetics, biochemistry or neurology. So how do I get into graduate school? Do I need to plan to move somewhere they are actively researching cephs or would it be possible to enroll in a marine bio/biochem/neurology program and collaborate with ceph researchers remotely? Do I need to research grant opportunities beforehand? Do I email prospective graduate studies departments or try to meet with them beforehand or do they not like that? Since I don't really have current people for letters of recommendation, it seems like conducting my own research project here in the Caribbean would be a way to show that I am a good doctoral candidate. Or is there something else I can do to improve my chances? Thanks for any help or advice!