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Life after the PhD: Walking the tightrope without a safety net Theresa Mercer Centre for Adaptive Science and Sustainability, University of Hull.

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Presentation on theme: "Life after the PhD: Walking the tightrope without a safety net Theresa Mercer Centre for Adaptive Science and Sustainability, University of Hull."— Presentation transcript:

1 Life after the PhD: Walking the tightrope without a safety net Theresa Mercer Centre for Adaptive Science and Sustainability, University of Hull

2 Transitions Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| 2 StudentResearcher

3 My Background Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| 3 Education BSc (Hons) Environmental Science (UEA) MSc Environmental Management (Sunderland) PhD Environmental Geochemistry (Hull) Work Experience PhD – research assistant – HYDRALAB Postdoc research assistant - CASS

4 Rollercoaster of Emotions Philips and Pugh (1998) - PhD Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| 4 1. Enthusiasm 2. Isolation 3. Interest Independence 4. Boredom Frustration 5. A job to be Finished 6. Euphoria Safety Net = Supervisor

5 Rollercoasters do not suit me!! Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| 5

6 Rollercoaster of Emotions Transition from student to researcher Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| 6 1. Euphoria 2. Tiredness 3. Job hunting5. Insecurities Rejection 6. Moving On4. First Job

7 1. Euphoria Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| 7

8 Rollercoaster of Emotions Transition from student to researcher Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| 8 1. Euphoria 2. Tiredness 3. Job hunting5. Insecurities Rejection 6. Moving On4. First Job

9 2. Tiredness Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| 9

10 Rollercoaster of Emotions Transition from student to researcher Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| Euphoria 2. Tiredness 3. Job hunting5. Insecurities Rejection 6. Moving On4. First Job

11 3. Job Hunting Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| 11 Suddenly realise that you are all alone in the big wide world and its time to get a job! The world may be your oyster but you still have to go after the opportunities and this can be a scary and difficult journey Use your networks (PhD) Apply for related jobs – tailor your work and get good at selling your work

12 Rollercoaster of Emotions Transition from student to researcher Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| Euphoria 2. Tiredness 3. Job hunting5. Insecurities Rejection 6. Moving On4. First Job

13 4. First Post-doc Job Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| 13 Started at the end of the PhD Short-term contracts (post-doc) Independence

14 Rollercoaster of Emotions Transition from student to researcher Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| Euphoria 2. Tiredness 3. Job hunting5. Insecurities Rejection 6. Moving On4. First Job

15 5. Insecurities/Rejections Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| 15 Do I deserve title of Dr? Similar insecurities as with PhD – new skills/knowledge Supervisor Rejections What Really Counts: Funding grants Publications Collaboration Invited presentations

16 Rollercoaster of Emotions Transition from student to researcher Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| Euphoria 2. Tiredness 3. Job hunting5. Insecurities Rejection 6. Moving On4. First Job

17 6. Moving On Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| 17 Move onto next job/project On your way Not at this stage yet Nature Careers (3 rd, February 2011) Taking The Plunge Laura Bonetta Many life scientists complete more than one postdoc before finding a permanent position. Career position Additional training Interests Lack of funding (project money)

18 Theresas Top Tips 1 Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| 18 Start job applications early Start the publishing process early Develop a thick skin Keep in touch with your contacts from your PhD and expand on this network Try and get involved in all you can Keep your independence

19 Theresas Top Tips 2 Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| 19 Get involved in a mentoring scheme Attend training events – research/development (continuing skills) MOST IMPORTANTLY Enjoy your experience and the transition You will miss being a PhD student Reflect on your journey

20 Useful Websites for Researchers Life After the PhD| 10 February 2011| 20 Vitae (section for researchers) UK Research Staff Association Postgraduate Toolbox (http://www.postgraduatetoolbox.net/site/index)http://www.postgraduatetoolbox.net/site/index Postgraduate Forum (http://www.postgraduateforum.com/home.aspx?AspxAutoDetectCooki eSupport=1)http://www.postgraduateforum.com/home.aspx?AspxAutoDetectCooki eSupport=1 Graduate Junction (http://www.graduatejunction.net/)http://www.graduatejunction.net/ Post Doc Career Initiative (http://www.pcdi.nl/)http://www.pcdi.nl/ UK MentorSET (http://www.mentorset.org.uk/)http://www.mentorset.org.uk/

21 Any questions?


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