Career Advice???

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  • Big_StacksBig_Stacks "I don't worry about hittin' power, cause I don't give 'em nuttin' to hit." 4,670 Posts
    couple tings stacks...you gonna get rid of all your records when you move?
    can you give soulstrut a shoutout at these upcoming interviews????




    ps. sounds like you know what to do.trust instincts

    Oh Tripledouble, the vinyls will be going on the road with me. I definitely want to hook up with some 'Strutters when I visit Cashville and Ithaca. Thanks for the vote of confidence bro!!! I'm reeling with indecision.

    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak


  • can you give soulstrut a shoutout at these upcoming interviews????


    Whatever you do, DO NOT pull up a seemingly harmless Soulstrut thread during your presentation.

    Right, Drewn?


  • can you give soulstrut a shoutout at these upcoming interviews????


    Whatever you do, DO NOT pull up a seemingly harmless Soulstrut thread during your presentation.

    Right, Drewn?

    hahahahaha

  • Big_StacksBig_Stacks "I don't worry about hittin' power, cause I don't give 'em nuttin' to hit." 4,670 Posts

    can you give soulstrut a shoutout at these upcoming interviews????


    Whatever you do, DO NOT pull up a seemingly harmless Soulstrut thread during your presentation.

    Right, Drewn?

    Nah, strictly Powerpoint, tables, figures, and copies of papers. Speaking of that, I need to get this semester stuff done so I can make revisions to the papers I plan to present. I got "friendly reviews" for one paper from a couple of colleagues, and they really trashed the sucker. So, I need to shore it up for the road. The 2nd needs some re-framing and it'll be ready. Lots to do in very little time. Plus, I have a shitload of grading, two finals to write, and an article review due by the 20th. Yikes!!!!

    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak

  • mannybolonemannybolone 15,032 Posts
    Neta,

    The real talk quotient just got upped...

    I can totally, absolutely sympathize with your position. It was very difficult for me to make the decision to leave the Bay Area after 16 years, esp. in taking a job that paid about 2/3rds of what my wife was already earning while we still lived up there (no mortgage though).

    However, it's also like this: the Bay Area is possibly one of the worst places in America to try to find work as an academic. There are fewer schools than other regions, especially at the Research 1 level, and any position at the better schools - and I'm including CSU and decent liberal arts colleges (like Mills or USF) in that equation - are bound to be hyper-competitive b/c there's so many people who want to get a job in the Bay.

    I debated staying up there and just trying to wait it out but ultimately, I moved the fam down South for a variety of reasons. I'll skip the personal shit and just keep it focused professionally:

    CSULB offered me a TT position to do EXACTLY what it is I studied to do: teach/research on race/ethnicity and popular culture. I couldn't have written a better job description that was a closer fit to what it is that I actually do. That kind of match is raer as hell and therefore, I knew that if I turned down this offer, it was very, very unlikely I'd see another match like it, especially given my geographic limitations.

    Importantly too, I've seen with other friends of mine what happens when they insist on staying in one geographic area. I totally respect that decision on their part - I understand that desire to let your life dictate your job and not the other way around. However, these are also people who haven't locked down a TT position yet and are kind of hating their professional life as a consequence. That kind of reality weighed heavily on my mind.

    That said, I was still willing to consider turning down LB and holding out for something in the Bay, mostly because I didn't need the work for money's sake. The question would eventually have come up though: if I hadn't gotten a job my first year on the market...and then not gotten a job my second year on the market...what then?

    Honestly - I wouldn't have considered junior/community college. I would rather have worked as an adjunct prof/lecturer or applied for post-docs. The main reason is because the work load teaching at a jr/comm. college is off the chain - usually 4-4, sometimes as high as 5-5. I like teaching but I didn't get into academia strictly to teach and I most definitely do not love it enough to want to teach 4-4 or 5-5.

    Related to that - and you touch on this - I wouldn't have had any time to work on research or get writing done and that's also why I got into academia. Giving that up would have meant getting away from my career goals to begin with. Moreover, it would have also been detrimental to any future career aspirations to get a TT job if I wasn't able to stay in the mix doing research and writing. The adjuncts I know were still able to work on that angle of their careers even if they lacked a TT position. Teaching full-time at a jr./comm college would be far, far more difficult and it's not like the pay is so high as to create an incentive. In my experience, people who want to teach junior college do so because they want to teach junior college - that's their aim. It doesn't work well if it's a stop-gap measure - you really have to be committed to that career to make it work for you.

    Not to further rub salt here but you must know that, as a history PhD, you're in the second most over-saturated field in all of academia (excluding English). That only makes things harder for you on the market unless you'd be able to aim for other interdisciplinary fields such as Ethnic Studies, American Studies, Women's Studies, etc.


    So let me stop being all doom and gloom for a moment and try to step back a sec.

    If the decision came down between:

    1) A good TT job that meets your main career aspirations...but it's not in the Bay Area vs.

    2) Some good opportunities to lecture and maybe even get research/writing done (albeit with little institutional support) and stay in the Bay...

    ...which would you ultimately rather have?

    It's definitely possible for you to find and keep work as an academic even if it's not TT. People do it all the time...it just comes with a lot of strings attached but it's probably not so bad that you'd leave academia entirely. What you'd likely be looking at is:

    *lower pay than your colleagues even if you do as much/more teaching work as them.
    *little to no institutional support for your research (but you can look to outside fellowships)
    *lack of job security and stability.
    *the need to constantly be locking down teaching gigs every few months (aka the freelancer's hustle)

    If staying in the Bay is worth putting up with those - and personally, I was willing to take that plunge even if I ultimately didn't - then I think you'll be fine.


    But let me drop the rest of the real talk:

    The longer you stay out of the TT will be a detriment BUT if you've been done with your PhD and still haven't found a TT job 3-4 years out, that won't hurt you.

    10 years out? That will be a problem, esp. if you're not doing/writing new research.

    Supposedly, there are some schools who frown on professors who've done "too much" lecturing though it's usually impossible to ascertain if the school you're applying for has that kind of mentality. I know of people who've made the transition from lecturing to TT without it being a huge deal. I also know people who've been lecturing for many years and can't get a TT job (though in those cases, they also tend to be people who are unwilling to move for work).

    In the end, you have compelling reasons to stay: husband, home and it's the Bay. If those things are what's ultimatley more important but you still love academia, then I think you find a middle ground that will allow you to have the former but still do the latter. The TT job isn't an impossibility...but sure, you'll be stacking the chips against you higher than they'd normally be otherwise.

    Good luck! And feel free to follow-up on this if you want.




    This thread is blowing my mind.

    I'm 3 years into my PhD program in history at UC Berkeley... and I've been thinking hypothetically about these kinds of situations. As Orals approach, the reality of the academic job market weighs heavy. I'm committed to living in the Bay: I don't want to live anywhere else, I married someone who doesn't want to live anywhere else, we just took on a huge mortgage to prove that we don't want to live anywhere else, and we plan to raise a kid or two who won't want to live anywhere else. I think, maybe, I picked the wrong career...

    ..Except I love what I do. There must be a way to put 6 years of life-altering, joy-draining, sleep-depriving training to good use. There MUST!!

    What do each of you think about junior college? Neither of you mentioned teaching at a city college even early on in your career... Why is that? Did you or would you have considered this a bad move? A dead-end?

    I know the essential draw-back: the "full time" class load is nearly twice that of a state college or university, so there'd be no time to write and publish or to conduct research to develop lectures (and, so, my C.V. wouldn't grow much). But I do have a friend who has been on tenure track (with only a Master's) at SF City for nearly 4 years and is relatively happy, making good money, and has been encouraged by the administration to pursue her PhD. My mom, on the other hand, taught a few classes at JCs here and there for years without much security. Finally, in her mid- 40s, she earned a position at San Jose State and has been there for nearly 10 years now... but with no tenure in sigh t.

    I don't know... for someone like me -- stubborn and stationary -- what is the best road to an academic job with a reasonable amount of security?

  • mannybolonemannybolone 15,032 Posts
    BTW,

    For both me and my family, we're really glad we made the move down here. We still like the Bay better as a place to raise our daughter and just to live (L.A. weather is nice, I can't front, but the Bay is just the Bay. Real headz know what I mean) but otherwise, we're actually very happy down here. A lot of this has little to do with my job per se (though believe me, I am so relieved to have a job) but rather, outside factors (good friends and family in the area. A nice place to live even if we're still renters, etc. )

    My point though: moving is always a risk but sometimes, it works out better than you think.

    If I were you...I would give LA serious consideration.

    1) It's still California and while it may not be the Island Kingdom of San Francisco, it's also not, say, everywhere else in America - politically, diversity-wise, etc.

    2) Housing prices are still increasing in S.F. despite the slow down but they're starting to stagnate here in L.A. If you and Ross were forced to sell your home, it's likely that you'd have greater purchasing power down here. Just being real about that.

    3) A LOT MORE SCHOOLS to apply to, including two UCs, four CSUs, and a shitload of good private schools, from USC to Pepperdine to LMU to Pomona, etc.

    4) Did I mention it was 77 today?

    5) You're still close enough to the Bay to visit when you want to. It'd be nicer if the drive were less than 4 hours of course, but Southwest/Jet Blue is always an option too.

    6) You got folks like me, Anthony, Shig, all down hurr. Holla!

  • Big_StacksBig_Stacks "I don't worry about hittin' power, cause I don't give 'em nuttin' to hit." 4,670 Posts
    Neta,

    On top of all that O-Dub said, you may risk sorely UNDERUTILIZING a great and VERY marketable Berkeley PhD that will fetch great spoils in the open job market. Could you rationalize teaching at community college with a PhD from Berkeley just to live in the 'Bay? If you can, then you should be OK. I would consider whatever choice you make very carefully.

    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak

  • mannybolonemannybolone 15,032 Posts
    Neta,

    On top of all that O-Dub said, you may risk sorely UNDERUTILIZING a great and VERY marketable Berkeley PhD that will fetch great spoils in the open job market. Could you rationalize teaching at community college with a PhD from Berkeley just to live in the 'Bay? If you can, then you should be OK. I would consider whatever choice very carefully.

    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak

    I hear where B.S. is coming from. My personal slant on it is that ultimately, you need to decide what you want out of your overall career. To me, I did not NEED the TT position to validate my degree and all the years I spent in grad school but that's really a personality thing. For peers of mine, if they don't become a professor, they'd probably have a huge identity crisis so there's definitely folks like that too.

    The question is: which are you?

  • SwayzeSwayze 14,705 Posts
    Stacks,

    Post up one of your articles. I'm just curious how much of it I would actually undertand....



    You'll do the right thing.

  • Stacks: I didn't read this thread very carefully but going off your original dilemma, I would seriously consider looking at Vanderbilt. As far as quality of life goes Nashville (home to Prince's Hot Chicken) is a bit more pleasant than Ithaca (lots of "Ithaca is Gorges" t-shirts) and as far as school prestige goes--I'm not sure whether this is true in your field; I'm looking at this from a humanities/social science perspective--cornell is only marginally better than vanderbilt. the chatter is that vanderbilt--already a great institution--is committed to growth and really poised to become one of the premier schools in the nation in the next 10-15 years--it's the Weezy (circa Dedication 1) of universities. good luck either way.

  • djannadjanna 1,543 Posts
    hey Neta!! I didn't know you were in your 3rd year already, damn, it's been a while since we hung out, huh?

    Good questions and I feel your geographical pain. As you know I am in San Diego, for job reasons, mainly Cas's brought us down here and now my internship is keeping me here through summer 2008. I see it like doing time kind of. But doing time in a beautiful city with nice weather and some cool folls, and somewhere where a 2nd year teacher and her military man could afford a home in a nice-ass neighborhood. We plan to move back to the Bay soon and hopefully what we are doing here is laying that foundation.

    Lucky for me, Special Educators are in demand in every city in the US. But when I look at doctorate programs in the Bay, there are only a couple, and then where would I go, with only a handful of universities with Special Ed depts?

    It's a tough question. Personally I am not interesting in teaching JC, and I think w/ a Berkeley PhD you deserve better!

    But what else are you interested in doing? Do you want to stay in academia? What other options are out there for a fine young history PhD such as yourself?

  • Big_StacksBig_Stacks "I don't worry about hittin' power, cause I don't give 'em nuttin' to hit." 4,670 Posts
    Stacks: I didn't read this thread very carefully but going off your original dilemma, I would seriously consider looking at Vanderbilt. As far as quality of life goes Nashville (home to Prince's Hot Chicken) is a bit more pleasant than Ithaca (lots of "Ithaca is Gorges" t-shirts) and as far as school prestige goes--I'm not sure whether this is true in your field; I'm looking at this from a humanities/social science perspective--cornell is only marginally better than vanderbilt. the chatter is that vanderbilt--already a great institution--is committed to growth and really poised to become one of the premier schools in the nation in the next 10-15 years--it's the Weezy (circa Dedication 1) of universities. good luck either way.

    Hey Hsulu,

    Definitely, I am NOT looking past Vanderbilt. I would take the gig if we can get the business straight (e.g., grant tenure, get the cake right, etc.). The Owen School is respected and I'll have some good colleagues to work with there (e.g., Bruce Barry, Ray Friedman, Richard Daft). In addition, I'd have greater access to doctoral students than in my current department. Plus, I'll be going to Vandy BEFORE my visit to Cornell, so I may like Nashville more than Ithaca (which sounds likely). Ultimately, the discussion here has helped me to re-focus on why I'm hitting the market to begin with: Trying to improve my family's quality of life. Given that Nashville has such a strong entertainment component, sizable Black middle-class, low-cost of living, job growth, high in-migration from other locations, an improvement in non-work fulfillment appears likely. Then again, if the deal is not made, assuming a positive tenure vote on Wednesday, I can hang around here another year, publish more papers, and hit the market again.

    Thanks for all the insightful comments contributed here. They have definitely helped me to clear up my thinking and focus on what matters.

    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak

  • Stacks, Oliver...

    Thank you for your detailed advice... for the "real talk" and for all the hypotheticals. I do need to figure out what sort of academic I intend to be. I certainly don't want to underutilize my degree or dishonor all the work I've done (and will do) and the professors who have supported me. I'm just not sure what I would be willing to sacrifice for TT. Again, maybe I've chosen the wrong career path. (I am, at the moment, in the midst of a hellishly stressful semester so that may explain some of this ambivalence.)

    I wish you both the best of luck -- Stacks, with your decision, Oliver, with your work in SoCal.

  • Big_StacksBig_Stacks "I don't worry about hittin' power, cause I don't give 'em nuttin' to hit." 4,670 Posts
    Stacks, Oliver...

    Thank you for your detailed advice... for the "real talk" and for all the hypotheticals. I do need to figure out what sort of academic I intend to be. I certainly don't want to underutilize my degree or dishonor all the work I've done (and will do) and the professors who have supported me. I'm just not sure what I would be willing to sacrifice for TT. Again, maybe I've chosen the wrong career path. (I am, at the moment, in the midst of a hellishly stressful semester so that may explain some of this ambivalence.)

    I wish you both the best of luck -- Stacks, with your decision, Oliver, with your work in SoCal.

    Thanks for your kind words, Neta. I'm glad that my advice was useful. I will be rooting for you to win in academia. It's rough out here. Good luck to you too, O-Dub, at the beginning of the tenure track. Feel free to holla at me if you have any questions, concerns, or whatever. I found it helpful to talk to the "old heads" during the whole experience. They provided great insights into the political aspects, the need for visibility within the department, larger university (and outside), and other more subtle nuances. I'd be glad to be of service if you need it.

    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak

  • mannybolonemannybolone 15,032 Posts
    Thanks Stacks - I'll definitely take you up on your offer. There's some shit going down in my dept right now where I got use some Real Headz wisdom.

    Back to Anna: The thing you should always keep in mind is that a PhD is substantial investment of your life with minimal financial support while you're doing it, that requires a hyper-focus for a project that likely will have zero impact to anything besides you getting your degree.

    And coming out of that, if you want to stay in academia (and certainly, some PhDs can/will go into private sector work but for education, that's less likely compared to, say, engineering), it also means dealing with a job market that doesn't allow for much geographic flexibility, requires all sorts of vague, unspoken politicking with colleagues you're stuck with and doesn't exactly pay chingo bling.

    This all said...the reasons I got and have stayed in academia have largely been for basic lifestyle reasons: I don't work a 9-5, I'm my own boss (sort of), and I get summers off. Oh yeah, and I like teaching and doing research and writing about it. All jokes aside, I think I probably take the intellectual environment for granted but I forget that the work environment I'm in is very different from most others (for better or for worse).

    And of course, if you can get tenure, you have a job for life (in theory).

    Neta: I'm gonna PM you stuff specific to your situation but the short answer is: keep ya head up. It sucks now, it will suck, but it won't always suck.



    Stacks, Oliver...

    Thank you for your detailed advice... for the "real talk" and for all the hypotheticals. I do need to figure out what sort of academic I intend to be. I certainly don't want to underutilize my degree or dishonor all the work I've done (and will do) and the professors who have supported me. I'm just not sure what I would be willing to sacrifice for TT. Again, maybe I've chosen the wrong career path. (I am, at the moment, in the midst of a hellishly stressful semester so that may explain some of this ambivalence.)

    I wish you both the best of luck -- Stacks, with your decision, Oliver, with your work in SoCal.

    Thanks for your kind words, Neta. I'm glad that my advice was useful. I will be rooting for you to win in academia. It's rough out here. Good luck to you too, O-Dub, at the beginning of the tenure track. Feel free to holla at me if you have any questions, concerns, or whatever. I found it helpful to talk to the "old heads" during the whole experience. They provided great insights into the political aspects, the need for visibility within the department, larger university (and outside), and other more subtle nuances. I'd be glad to be of service if you need it.

    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak

  • Stacks,

    May all strutters have these baller desicions to grapple with!!! Congrats on all you moves! I do hope we get to link when you come to Vandy.

    I wrote this whole rant, but it's better you hit me up when you're closer to coming down here.

    You got my info - call if you got any questions about the ville.

  • Big_StacksBig_Stacks "I don't worry about hittin' power, cause I don't give 'em nuttin' to hit." 4,670 Posts
    Stacks,

    May all strutters have these baller desicions to grapple with!!! Congrats on all you moves! I do hope we get to link when you come to Vandy.

    I wrote this whole rant, but it's better you hit me up when you're closer to coming down here.

    You got my info - call if you got any questions about the ville.

    Hey yoigotbeats (and all),

    Thanks so much for the support. Tomorrow is the big tenure vote day. I'll be holed up in the office grading projects, so I will be distracted. My senior colleagues said they'll have the toasting champagne on chill tomorrow, so that's a good sign. There was plenty of love spread around for ole' Stacks on the 'Strut. I really appreciate it and all of you!!!

    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak

  • shomshom 31 Posts
    I know this is way into a deep exchange, but I just wanted to add that I did a degree in Industrial Relations and Cornell was considered the best school in the world on the subject. There are a few other good schools (Urbana-Champagne, LSE, Oxford etc), but Cornell is by far the best.

    Btw - it???s interesting the amount of highly educated people there are on Soul Strut. I feel fortunate that I was lucky enough to have a ???higher??? education, but sometimes I feel that I could be way better off if I spent all that time I used to study and focused music instead. I know it???s unrelated to what you guys are talking about, but I just wanted to vent.

  • djannadjanna 1,543 Posts
    Thanks Stacks - I'll definitely take you up on your offer. There's some shit going down in my dept right now where I got use some Real Headz wisdom.

    Back to Anna: The thing you should always keep in mind is that a PhD is substantial investment of your life with minimal financial support while you're doing it, that requires a hyper-focus for a project that likely will have zero impact to anything besides you getting your degree.

    And coming out of that, if you want to stay in academia (and certainly, some PhDs can/will go into private sector work but for education, that's less likely compared to, say, engineering), it also means dealing with a job market that doesn't allow for much geographic flexibility, requires all sorts of vague, unspoken politicking with colleagues you're stuck with and doesn't exactly pay chingo bling.

    This all said...the reasons I got and have stayed in academia have largely been for basic lifestyle reasons: I don't work a 9-5, I'm my own boss (sort of), and I get summers off. Oh yeah, and I like teaching and doing research and writing about it. All jokes aside, I think I probably take the intellectual environment for granted but I forget that the work environment I'm in is very different from most others (for better or for worse).

    And of course, if you can get tenure, you have a job for life (in theory).

    Neta: I'm gonna PM you stuff specific to your situation but the short answer is: keep ya head up. It sucks now, it will suck, but it won't always suck.



    Stacks, Oliver...

    Thank you for your detailed advice... for the "real talk" and for all the hypotheticals. I do need to figure out what sort of academic I intend to be. I certainly don't want to underutilize my degree or dishonor all the work I've done (and will do) and the professors who have supported me. I'm just not sure what I would be willing to sacrifice for TT. Again, maybe I've chosen the wrong career path. (I am, at the moment, in the midst of a hellishly stressful semester so that may explain some of this ambivalence.)

    I wish you both the best of luck -- Stacks, with your decision, Oliver, with your work in SoCal.

    Thanks for your kind words, Neta. I'm glad that my advice was useful. I will be rooting for you to win in academia. It's rough out here. Good luck to you too, O-Dub, at the beginning of the tenure track. Feel free to holla at me if you have any questions, concerns, or whatever. I found it helpful to talk to the "old heads" during the whole experience. They provided great insights into the political aspects, the need for visibility within the department, larger university (and outside), and other more subtle nuances. I'd be glad to be of service if you need it.

    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak

    Yeah, I'm thinking that an EdD may be better for me since those programs are geared towards working teachers/administrators and they are a lot shorter it seems. A PhD sounds awesome, but may not be a reality for me. Shooot, I'm still working on my teaching credential!

  • BrianBrian 7,618 Posts
    good luck tomorrow stackz. you got that shit!

  • Big_StacksBig_Stacks "I don't worry about hittin' power, cause I don't give 'em nuttin' to hit." 4,670 Posts

    This all said...the reasons I got and have stayed in academia have largely been for basic lifestyle reasons: I don't work a 9-5, I'm my own boss (sort of), and I get summers off. Oh yeah, and I like teaching and doing research and writing about it. All jokes aside, I think I probably take the intellectual environment for granted but I forget that the work environment I'm in is very different from most others (for better or for worse).

    And of course, if you can get tenure, you have a job for life (in theory).


    Say O-Dub. Professor is one of the highest quality of worklife jobs in the U.S. economy in terms of subjective well-being. As O-Dub said, you can't beat the work schedule and autonomy of this job. Essentially, the position is what you make of it. If you are motivated, reasonably bright, and not dependent on a lot of supervision, you could work in this field. The same goes for earning a PhD. While being bright is important, it's insufficient. Plus, grad schools screen on mental ability (GREs, GMATs, etc.), so that's built into the system. Ultimately, bright people with PERSEVERANCE get PhD's, meaning that they can stick with the tedium involved in 4-5 years of doctoral study. The same set of qualities make for a successful academic career. It isn't mystical, don't let dudes fool you (on some ole' elitist bullshit).

    And Brian, thanks for the vote of confidence. The chair of my area just emailed me about bringing some champagne tomorrow.

    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak

  • Big Stacks,

    Congratulations on getting to this event.I remember you from the S***** T**** messageboard from a few years back and you always had knowledge to drop.
    It`s obvious you are as well liked in the real world as well as on messageboards..

    My advice(for what it`s worth) is take things each step at a time - enjoy YOUr day that YOU earned.Leave the rest of the decisons to whenever you need to make them - you never know what will happen, you might have something better show up!!
    Enjoy yourself..

  • Big_StacksBig_Stacks "I don't worry about hittin' power, cause I don't give 'em nuttin' to hit." 4,670 Posts
    Big Stacks,

    Congratulations on getting to this event.I remember you from the S***** T**** messageboard from a few years back and you always had knowledge to drop.
    It`s obvious you are as well liked in the real world as well as on messageboards..

    My advice(for what it`s worth) is take things each step at a time - enjoy YOUr day that YOU earned.Leave the rest of the decisons to whenever you need to make them - you never know what will happen, you might have something better show up!!
    Enjoy yourself..

    Great advice, Badder than Evil! I intend to shutdown after learning of the (hopefully positive) voting outcome. After toasting with my colleagues, T**i and I will celebrate with dinner and drinks for the evening. I'll post up the result later on tomorrow night. Thanks for all the support, 'Strut faithfuls. Maybe after the promotion, T**i will lighten up on criticizing my record buying habits.

    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak

  • BreakSelfBreakSelf 2,925 Posts
    This thread is making me seriously nauseous

    I'm about to get tenure

    I'm already have a job teaching

    I'm three years into grad school

    SHUT. IT. MOUTH.

    I can't write these papers thinking about this shit.
    Where am I? Ground-fucking-zero. 1st quarter, 1st year, 6-year PhD program in developmental psychology at Stanford. This place is crazy. The people are crazy. NOBODY DOES ANYTHING BUT WORK. Is this what the rest of my life is going to be like?

    crush. kill. destroy.









































  • Big_StacksBig_Stacks "I don't worry about hittin' power, cause I don't give 'em nuttin' to hit." 4,670 Posts
    This thread is making me seriously nauseous

    I'm about to get tenure

    I'm already have a job teaching

    I'm three years into grad school

    SHUT. IT. MOUTH.

    I can't write these papers thinking about this shit.
    Where am I? Ground-fucking-zero. 1st quarter, 1st year, 6-year PhD program in developmental psychology at Stanford. This place is crazy. The people are crazy. NOBODY DOES ANYTHING BUT WORK. Is this what the rest of my life is going to be like?

    crush. kill. destroy.




    Hey Breakself,

    Nah, the rest of your life will not be just work. In fact, I had a BALL in graduate school. The key is to live a balanced existence. I made a promise to myself right before embarking upon graduate study that I would remain true to myself throughout the process. That said, I did non-academic things like make beats, produce demos, collect records, hit the clubs, date, go to concerts, travel, and so on. Besides studying regularly, you must also manage your emotions successfully to finish your doctoral program. I know cats that were obsesssed with their studies and left after 1 year with a 4.0 GPA due to burnout. These folks said they could not take the tedium of doctoral study, but they also did not do anything but study. They were very unbalanced in terms of the their non-academic lives. Me, I did all the stuff listed above and I was the 2nd student to finish in my class ('99, U of Akron) and earned a 3.95 GPA. Each week, I would take 1 day off (Fridays) to do absolutely nothing academic. You must let your mind rest. Also, you should take what I call "emergency blow-off days" when you find yourself mentally drained (e.g., reading the same passage 10 times and having it not sink in is a symptom). In these situations, put the books down and take the rest of the day off and complete the work tomorrow (knowing you must work a little longer to catch up what you didn't complete the day before); however, you will find yourself being more productive after letting your mind rest. Overall, doing these things will allow you to better manage and enjoy the doctoral study experience. I use these same practices in managing my career to keep from burning out. Best of luck!!!

    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak

  • Big_StacksBig_Stacks "I don't worry about hittin' power, cause I don't give 'em nuttin' to hit." 4,670 Posts
    Hey,

    I have an update on the career decision dilemma I presented in this thread. I was made a great (financial) offer by the Owen Graduate School of Management at Vanderbilt. They presented a great salary, summer research support, reduced teaching load, but with the rank of Associate Professor WITHOUT tenure. I balked at this and sent the Associate Dean back to the powers-that-be to attempt (so I thought) to resolve the issue. After rounds of back-and-forth haggling with prospective colleagues, deans, and even a conversation with the university chancellor from his cellphone while on the road, I flatly refused their offer this morning due to their unwillingness to grant tenure.

    Why? There were a number of reasons. First and foremost, I have tenure here and the relative lack of stress that comes with that. Second, the market (ala Cornell University's School of Industrial and Labor Relations) has signaled willingness to acknowledge my prior record (including both research and teaching awards) and consider me coming in as a TENURED Associate Professor. Third, the unwillingness to grant tenure and my having to haggle about it, to me, is no way to start off a fruitful faculty-department relationship. Even if they had granted tenure, they would have done so with a shotgun to their heads, and I didn't want that. This is how I couched my rejection this morning. I said I wouldn't want the job even if they decided to grant tenure there. Vanderbilt was unwilling to grant tenure because, get this, they were concerned with my ability to teach in their cash-cow, daytime MBA program , not my research program. This, to me, signals fiscal pressure geared toward (subjective) teaching ratings, meaning my tenure decision there would have been based SOLELY on student ratings. That would be fuckin' crazy, and I just couldn't shake my ass and pander to a bunch of pampered MBAs to secure tenure a 2ND TIME.

    Here is a lesson to you budding academics out there. Don't take a job that a university wants you to sell your ass (and principles) to have. What good is a job if you had to pull your pants down to have it? Money alone can't reconcile such indignity. When changing schools, you should feel like the newly signed free-agent players and owners wearing huge grins for completing a mutually beneficial and desired business deal.







    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak

  • SPlDEYSPlDEY Vegas 3,375 Posts


    Mayor: "Dr. Wernstrom, can you save my city?"
    Wernstrom: "Of course, but it'll cost you. First I'll need tenure."
    Mayor: "Done."
    Wernstrom: "And a big research grant."
    Mayor: "You got it!"
    Wernstrom: "Also, access to a lab and five graduate students...at least three of them Chinese."
    Mayor: "Did...all right, done. What's your plan?"
    Wernstrom: "What plan? I'm set for life. Au revoir, suckers!"
    Leela: "That rat! Do something!"
    Mayor: "I wish I could, but he's got tenure."

    - spidey

  • I flatly refused their offer this morning due to their unwillingness to grant tenure

    good for you. this is my first time reading this thread. you will get great things in the future if you really want it I'm sure. peace

  • dj_netadj_neta 166 Posts
    Hey,

    I have an update on the career decision dilemma I presented in this thread. I was made a great (financial) offer by the Owen Graduate School of Management at Vanderbilt. They presented a great salary, summer research support, reduced teaching load, but with the rank of Associate Professor WITHOUT tenure. I balked at this and sent the Associate Dean back to the powers-that-be to attempt (so I thought) to resolve the issue. After rounds of back-and-forth haggling with prospective colleagues, deans, and even a conversation with the university chancellor from his cellphone while on the road, I flatly refused their offer this morning due to their unwillingness to grant tenure.

    Why? There were a number of reasons. First and foremost, I have tenure here and the relative lack of stress that comes with that. Second, the market (ala Cornell University's School of Industrial and Labor Relations) has signaled willingness to acknowledge my prior record (including both research and teaching awards) and consider me coming in as a TENURED Associate Professor. Third, the unwillingness to grant tenure and my having to haggle about it, to me, is no way to start off a fruitful faculty-department relationship. Even if they had granted tenure, they would have done so with a shotgun to their heads, and I didn't want that. This is how I couched my rejection this morning. I said I wouldn't want the job even if they decided to grant tenure there. Vanderbilt was unwilling to grant tenure because, get this, they were concerned with my ability to teach in their cash-cow, daytime MBA program , not my research program. This, to me, signals fiscal pressure geared toward (subjective) teaching ratings, meaning my tenure decision there would have been based SOLELY on student ratings. That would be fuckin' crazy, and I just couldn't shake my ass and pander to a bunch of pampered MBAs to secure tenure a 2ND TIME.

    Here is a lesson to you budding academics out there. Don't take a job that a university wants you to sell your ass (and principles) to have. What good is a job if you had to pull your pants down to have it? Money alone can't reconcile such indignity. When changing schools, you should feel like the newly signed free-agent players and owners wearing huge grins for completing a mutually beneficial and desired business deal.







    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak


    Good for you. That must have been a difficult and draining process. My mother has been lecturing for over 10 years within an art department that is quickly transforming into a series of cash-cow, digital design programs, and she's stuck, paralyzed by her dependence on teaching ratings. But, as she's discovered, no matter how stellar her ratings, no matter how consistent those stellar ratings have been year after year after year, the administration finds some way to find her performance "average" and, thus, continue to deny her tenure. It's all about money. I'm betting you made the best possible decision.

    Good luck.
    Neta

  • Big_StacksBig_Stacks "I don't worry about hittin' power, cause I don't give 'em nuttin' to hit." 4,670 Posts
    Hey,

    I have an update on the career decision dilemma I presented in this thread. I was made a great (financial) offer by the Owen Graduate School of Management at Vanderbilt. They presented a great salary, summer research support, reduced teaching load, but with the rank of Associate Professor WITHOUT tenure. I balked at this and sent the Associate Dean back to the powers-that-be to attempt (so I thought) to resolve the issue. After rounds of back-and-forth haggling with prospective colleagues, deans, and even a conversation with the university chancellor from his cellphone while on the road, I flatly refused their offer this morning due to their unwillingness to grant tenure.

    Why? There were a number of reasons. First and foremost, I have tenure here and the relative lack of stress that comes with that. Second, the market (ala Cornell University's School of Industrial and Labor Relations) has signaled willingness to acknowledge my prior record (including both research and teaching awards) and consider me coming in as a TENURED Associate Professor. Third, the unwillingness to grant tenure and my having to haggle about it, to me, is no way to start off a fruitful faculty-department relationship. Even if they had granted tenure, they would have done so with a shotgun to their heads, and I didn't want that. This is how I couched my rejection this morning. I said I wouldn't want the job even if they decided to grant tenure there. Vanderbilt was unwilling to grant tenure because, get this, they were concerned with my ability to teach in their cash-cow, daytime MBA program , not my research program. This, to me, signals fiscal pressure geared toward (subjective) teaching ratings, meaning my tenure decision there would have been based SOLELY on student ratings. That would be fuckin' crazy, and I just couldn't shake my ass and pander to a bunch of pampered MBAs to secure tenure a 2ND TIME.

    Here is a lesson to you budding academics out there. Don't take a job that a university wants you to sell your ass (and principles) to have. What good is a job if you had to pull your pants down to have it? Money alone can't reconcile such indignity. When changing schools, you should feel like the newly signed free-agent players and owners wearing huge grins for completing a mutually beneficial and desired business deal.







    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak


    Good for you. That must have been a difficult and draining process. My mother has been lecturing for over 10 years within an art department that is quickly transforming into a series of cash-cow, digital design programs, and she's stuck, paralyzed by her dependence on teaching ratings. But, as she's discovered, no matter how stellar her ratings, no matter how consistent those stellar ratings have been year after year after year, the administration finds some way to find her performance "average" and, thus, continue to deny her tenure. It's all about money. I'm betting you made the best possible decision.

    Good luck.
    Neta

    Hi Neta,

    Quite honestly, it wasn't difficult at all. I was pretty much uninterested in Vanderbilt after my visit there. I finally figured out what they're about (a daytime MBA machine shop) and I don't want (or have) to deal with fiscal pressures like that. Hearing quotes like, "our US News and World Reports rankings are based on our teaching ratings, and any dip in them could reduce our national ranking and revenue". To me this reads, "Stacks, you shake that ass and make that money for us and if you don't, we'll dismiss your untenured, unprotected ass." No thank you!!! I'm more of your traditional academic, research-teacher, who desires to work in a place where SCHOLARSHIP is valued in addition to teaching. In such places, my curriculum vita is desirable and these kinds of places approach me with tenure coming in as a no-brainer (as Phil Roth at Clemson told me). I've had folks from Cornell (I visit there February 23rd), U of Central Florida, Florida International, Clemson, Auburn, etc. all communicate to me how tenure would not be an issue for me. Some of these non-decisions on my part have simply been either (a) location-based (no Florida-related) and/or (b) monetary (e.g., UCF and Auburn couldn't get the loot right). The crazy thing about Cornell is that I applied for an Assistant Professor job initially and THEY removed me from that pool to consider me for a tenured spot (endorsed by the dean of the school as a potential "opportunity hire"). I made Vanderbilt aware of this, by the way. As long as you're publishing in this game, you're mobile so I didn't sweat turning down the loot. It will be there. As I told the Associate Dean, "I'm gonna take the gamble on myself. I think I'm a great bet." He said he agreed based on my record. If you can't bet on yourself, who will?

    Peace,

    Big Stacks from Kakalak
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