Improving the Applicant Pool

Laura L. Walsh lwalsh at nemo
Sat Feb 27 16:17:50 EST 1993


pauld at cs.washington.edu (Paul Barton-Davis) writes:
>What do the female scientists/mothers who read this think ? Does you
>role as a mother interfere with your role as a scientist, or vice
>versa ? Do these roles strengthen and reinforce one another ? Do you
>think that a someone with some other important dimensions to their
>lives can be a front-ranking scientist ?
>-- paul (whose wife reads this, and will undoubtedly answer yes :-)

Well, as a mother and a grad student and a member of a private
school board, I can say that it is really difficult to balance
the aspects of my life.  My roles do not seem to augment each
other, but rather detract.  Very few of my colleagues have to
worry about picking the kids up early on snow days or arranging
alternative car pooling for when the babysitter is sick.  And
evening "group meetings" were almost going to be policy, until
I pointed out that after 5:00, I turn into a MOM.  

For my kids, it is good for them to see me enjoy my work as much
as I do, but I am definitely overcommitted and desperately in
need of just another 24 hours every day.  I truly want to do an
excellent job at everything I do, but I have to accept being
mediocre at it all because I don't have enough time.  At this
point, I am just worried about finishing my Ph.D. -- the question
of being a "front-ranking" scientist is totally beyond my ability
to fantasize.



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