Earlier this week my Q & A with English PhD Joe Fruscione was posted to my University Affairs blog! He’s making the transition to post-academic employment, dropping full-time adjuncting in favour of a freelance career as a writer, editor, tutor, and teacher:
Now, I’m at peace with my decision to leave after this year: I’m set up to do some editing and writing-consultation work, for which I’ll draw on the skills and knowledge I’ve gained in the last 16 years in higher ed as a student and teacher-scholar. I’ve always been a great editor and proofreader, and I’m happy that I’ll employ these skills regularly in the near future.
For lots more from Joe, check out the original post!
In a first for From PhD to Life, I’ve got a non-Q&A guest contributor! Thanks to Carleton University’s Leah DeVellis for this advice column on the benefits of social media for graduate students, postdocs, and academics in transition to work beyond the tenure track. Leah notes five reasons why social media can be useful and important: 1) connecting with others, 2) making research accessible, 3) publicizing your work, 4) positioning yourself as an expert, and 5) seeking out alternative and post-academic career options.
For Leah’s full post at my University Affairs blog, please click here.
In my latest post for University Affairs, I fess up: I’ve got some bad habits! It’s time to break those, and build better ones. Read the rest here. What good habits or practices did you once have that have since fallen away? Maybe it’s time to bring them back? Good luck to us!
Today’s post is a reflection on my troubles imagining a non-academic future for myself given the pervasiveness of the ready-made academic dream. But over time I realized what I truly wanted. Read the post on my University Affairs blog.
Remember my “I’m a loser” post? Well, guess what? It’s been a year since I felt that way . . . and not only that, but I’m settling in to a nice new post-academic identity: coach! Read my latest blog post over at University Affairs.
My most recent blog post over at University Affairs is about how coaching has really been helping me now, my “what if” thoughts about my PhD years, and my new offering: a discussion and support group for dissertators! An excerpt:
I’m launching a virtual discussion and support group, open to dissertators and graduate students in general. . . . Here are the group details:
What: Discussion and Support Group for Dissertators
When: 6 Tuesdays, 5:30-6:30 p.m. ET / 12, 19, and 26 November, and 3, 10, and 17 December 2013
Where: Over the phone (you’ll be calling a US [long-distance] number, but let me know if you’re outside North America)
What else: A private Facebook group for discussion between calls
Who: Open to 5 or 6 group members
Total cost: $60 CDN (+ tax for Canadians, as applicable) for all six 1-hour calls
You can read the full post here. Yay!
I’ve been remiss lately, not composing anything of my own for the blog… but I’m getting back on track and will let you know what I’ve been up to soon. The short version is: vacation! And continued coaching, learning, and fun.
In the meantime, I’m excited to share with you this wonderful Q & A contribution from Peter Larson, a former tenured professor who’s now a full-time blogger and running coach. Cool! Here’s a snippet:
What was the hardest part about giving up tenure?
The hardest part for me was that I didn’t hate my academic job, but there were parts of it that I didn’t enjoy. If I’d been miserable, the decision would have been a lot easier!
I love teaching. Working with students in the classroom and lab is what kept me going each day. While I published enough for tenure and promotion, I didn’t particularly enjoy writing scholarly journal articles — popular writing is more my style. I hated committee work. I despised being a department chair even though I had an exceptionally good department filled with colleagues who got along really well with one another. Dealing with academic and administrative politics drove me crazy. I think the latter combined with enduring several arduous years of curriculum change planning as a faculty senator did me in. I just wanted to teach my classes, but even there I saw it likely that I’d be teaching the same class every fall for the next 25 years if I stayed. I needed a change.
For the rest, head over to my University Affairs blog.
Yesterday my Q & A with Sonja Streuber was posted on my University Affairs blog. Here’s an excerpt:
You left your graduate program ABD, without earning a PhD. Why?
. . . 2. Personal experience. I had colleagues who had already graduated with their PhDs, who were financing their job searches with anything, from adjuncting to playing organ in a movie theater. One of my friends got a visiting assistant prof job at Puget Sound — when it wasn’t extended, she walked into the woods with a shotgun and returned feet first. I actively pulled another one off the window ledge in the office building.
Oh my! Now go read the whole thing.
Today’s post comes via “pracademic” Jared Wesley, a political science PhD, former tenure-track professor, and current director-level provincial public servant. Here’s a taste:
What was your first post-PhD job?
In this environment, I was extremely fortunate to earn a tenure-track position as an assistant professor of political studies at the University of Manitoba. At the time, I considered it my “dream job”; having grown up in Manitoba, I relished the opportunity to give something back to my home community. I was even luckier to have been given that opportunity while still ABD, even though it meant launching my teaching and research program while finishing my dissertation and living in a different province from my partner. Eventually, though, things came together. My partner joined me in Winnipeg, and we got married. I finished my PhD, and transformed my dissertation into my first monograph . . . . Life was great, but it was about to get even better.
For the whole Q & A, head over to my From PhD to Life blog on the University Affairs website.
My latest reflection is now live on my University Affairs blog. In it, I ponder the many possibilities within academia:
Take a handful of tenured professors, even in the same or closely-allied disciplines, and you’ll find a handful of worlds represented. One may use her position to create community between scholars across departments, universities and countries. Another may see himself as bringing up the next generation of leaders and inculcating them in a long intellectual tradition. A third will place the highest value on contributing to practical, positive change in society by conducting rigorous empirical research. And a fourth will attempt to bridge the academic and wider worlds by writing op-eds and making media appearances.
For the whole thing, click here. Let me know what you think!