Friday, February 8, 2013

Part IV: Thoughts on Survival/Success in the New Era of Academia

Here is the last installment of tweets on this theme folks. Hope they've been of some help. Id like to pivot you to Josh Drew's blog post this week on the same theme. He has some things that just need be said more often. Here's an excerpt.
However, it occurs to me that the majority of the tasks I do ever day I have had very little to no formal training in. In a given week I 1) teach, 2) advise students, 3) apply for funding, 4) do research, 5) manage a graduate program and 6) write.  Now here’s the crux getting a Ph.D. is actually fairly poor preparation for the majority of these activities
In my case, I recall explicitly asking for a course on grantsmanship in graduate school. The idea was generally scoffed at, for reasons that I can only speculate as a cultural one. What is noteworthy is that in this new era of academia with limited federal funding, we are all getting more serious about what we do, who we train, and how we train them. This shift is part of the good in what can seem to be a troubling pattern in science funding.

1/27/13: If Life is the greatest show on earth, then biologists get to be at the circus for their entire career #tosrb #hallelujah

1/29/13: Scientists almost never get career breaks; They work hard & persevere in the face of doubt. Recognition comes retroactively #tosrb #Woese

1/29/13: Excellent training of students requires honesty to them, even when its hard. Excellent learning requires being honest w yourself #tosrb

1/30/13: When giving a seminar/lecture of excellence, remember to inspire regularly. Engagement is the button that turns on self-illumination #tosrb

2//13: EXPLORE not where your field is now, but where it is going to be in 3 years. It will transform and transcend you in your endeavors. #tosrb

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