job searching/academic couples

Sarah L. Pallas spallas at bcm.tmc.edu
Thu Feb 1 14:34:11 EST 1996


In article <199601290025.TAA20717 at service.bluefin.net> ,
adestef at BLUEFIN.NET writes:
>One suggestion that has been made to me is to make no mention of my
husband and
>his situation until I have been offered a position.  This seems late to
me.  
>Do you think I would be hurting my chances at a position if I bring this 
>issue up during a first interview?  Who is the appropriate person to 
>discuss this with?  Do people think it is appropriate to bring copies of
my
>husband's CV so it could be circulated to appropriate departments at a
>University?    Thanks in advance for your input.  This group has been 
>terrific resource for me.

Our strategy has been to mention the "other half" when we are contacted
by telephone for an interview.  Don't mention it earlier, e.g. in your
application letter, because your application may go straight in the
trash.  But I think mentioning it later is unfair- the dept has spent a
lot of $$ recruiting you and they should be given the opportunity to make
you a good offer, and in your case a good offer means finding a viable
situation for your spouse.  I should mention that my husband had one
interview actually WITHDRAWN when he mentioned he had a scientist wife,
but mostly places have tried to come up with something for both of us, or
at least not discriminate against us just because of who we're married
to.  Increasingly it is assumed that both halves of a married couple
work, and dept heads assume they'll have to help the spouse find a
situtation, though it's not necessarily assumed the spouse is a scientist
or an academic of some sort.  I think you should first discuss it with
the head of the search committee, or with a friend you may know in the
dept, and then the search head will help decide how to bring it up to the
dept chair.  Yes, you should bring or send a copy of your spouse's cv.

Good luck on your interviews!
Sarah Pallas



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