giner at my-deja.com
giner at my-deja.com
Sat Jun 26 14:36:09 EST 1999
In article <377121F5.99346659 at salk.edu>,
nospamforsburg at salk.edu wrote:
> You don't just
> come out of a tunnel at the end of a PhD into the blinding
> light. Grad students are ADULTS. They can, and should, make
> decisions for their own lives all along the way.
> While I am still disappointed
> at the Neanderthals and the brutality of some aspects of
> this profession, it hasn't surprised me in many years. I
> saw it coming back in grad school (PhD '89). No, my advisor never
> told me about alternatives. He never told me that for
> junior people getting started was difficult and that there
> were vanishingly few jobs available. He never counselled
> me in any way about my future. But I saw it anyway.
> And I stayed in despite it. I was willing to take the
> chance that I could make it because I knew it was what I wanted
> above all else. Why the heck else would I have
> stayed to get my degree? Why did you?
One thing that seems clear to me is that experiences can vary *greatly*
depending on where you are and whose lab you are in. In some labs the
hard work doesn't really seem hard because of the rewards, in others,
situations develop that make it unbearable. I think it's also easy to
lose perspective in a bad situation, especially if you are spending long
hours at the bench and losing sight of the big picture. A rewarding
experience in graduate school can be followed by a horrible experience
> J., you are obviously incredibly embittered. I'm sorry that science
> has been such a bad experience for you. I cetainly don't think you
> are a failure if you do something else (although you keep
> telling me I do.) It is unfortunate if you think you are. (By
> the way if you want some helpful career resources, try the Women in
> Page at the URL below). But you know what? It's not my fault that
> science isn't what you thought it was. It's not the faculty's fault
> you stayed in, or didn't know what to expect.
I don't think J. is any more embittered than a lot of people I've heard
from. Some days I felt the same way, other days I feel that once I have
my own lab things will be much better (not necessarily easier, just
The Women in Biology Web Page is a wonderful resource. I've spent a lot
of time there while trying to decide which path is correct for me. I
highly recommend it.
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