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Prof-Mamas, How's the Semester Going? - Page 3

post #41 of 92
Thanks for the tips, mamas! I'm feeling well-prepared but yet sick with nervousness. And I still have 3 more days until I leave!
post #42 of 92

going crazy waiting

So, the interview went well and I was feeling very good about myself when I first got back. I was the first candidate, and the third one went on Monday this week, so I've already been waiting 2.5 weeks. But after knowing the last candidate was done, and that a decision is being made, I have become super anxious and I can't stop thinking about this job! Every time my phone rings I jump out of my skin! I can hardly sleep. The only way I can make myself feel better is to think about why they might be taking some time to call, but I also don't want to let myself get my hopes up. There are NO jobs in my field so I was hanging all my hopes on this one.

Just needed to rant.
post #43 of 92
I'm so happy to hear the interview went well!

Oh, I know that "jump a mile every time the phone rings."

The folks around here are slow. It was 6 weeks from the last interview to the job offer.

They need to:
Search committee meets and recomends a hire
Faculty meets and votes on the recomendation.
Faculty (generally the search committee and dept chair) make a case for the hire to the dean.
Dean makes a decision.

I hope you hear something soon!
post #44 of 92
6 weeks?! Wow ... so I really need to calm down.
post #45 of 92
Tee hee. I was nothing close to calm. At the end there, I'd written off having an academic career.
post #46 of 92
Originally Posted by Geofizz
At the end there, I'd written off having an academic career.
Exactly. I'm so scared that I spent seven years getting a Ph.D. for naught. Everyone keeps telling me, "just hang in there, eventually something will come through" but it's so hard to keep going through this year after year (this is my 3rd time on the market, but the first time with degree in hand).
post #47 of 92


NAKing with my 15-week-old baby, dreading the fact that spring quarter and the end of my maternity leave start on monday. I'm teaching two courses with one day out of the week at home. Mondays and wednesdays will be the hard schedule. Will be biking home between classes (2-hour break) to nurse. DH will be at home with the baby when I'm at school. I keep telling myself that it's only 10 weeks, and that anybody can do anything for 10 weeks, but I'm really dreading it. I haven't let myself think about it much until this week, when I've been writing up my syllabi. Please tell me that I'm not a horrible personand that I won't screw up my son by going back to work so soon.

In some ways I'm really lucky since I can cut out in between classes, and I got all my research/publishing stuff done for this year done before he was born in December, but on the other hand I feel super isolated in my department, since no one else there has babies right now. I'm also feeling really bad because I know I'm going to have to shortchange my students this quarter--but our son is only a baby for a brief time, and he's so much more important than any job. Any words of wisdom?
post #48 of 92
Eruditia, oh I've been thinking about you this week! I just dread September and leaving Wyatt, and my schedule will be much freer than yours (2 days at home, and really only going in 3 afternoons and one evening a week). How is it going?? Don't worry about screwing ds up -- you're a terrific mom! And your dh will be an excellent caretaker. And don't worry about shortchanging your students -- they probably won't know the difference, because I'm sure you'll still be giving them lots of energy, time, and attention. We're always much harder on ourselves.... so, my only "wisdom" is to not worry (it wastes energy and feels horrible!). Again, I ask, how is it going??

Cheidza, any word yet?
post #49 of 92

Thanks for asking. I finally got some (unofficial) word from a colleague that they offered it to someone else. I'm assuming by the end of this week he must have accepted it. I'm feeling really depressed and uncertain about my future in academia. The only advice I've been given is just to keep trying. I'm not even sure what I should/can do to improve my chances in the future.

This is so frustrating!


I agree with Rainy that everything will be okay with your DS. I went back to work part time when DS was only 7 weeks old, and full time when he was 2 years. He handled both well, and our relationship has been none the worse for the wear.
post #50 of 92
Ahhh, shucks. Sorry, that sucks. I agree, keep at it. Keep sending in applications, keep getting good work done. You might also want to call the chair of the search and ask for suggestions on your next interview. Try and get some feedback.

I have my own question now for those with wee ones. Umm, note the change in my sig.

Any suggestions on (1) when (2) who and (3) how to tell my department about my pregnancy? My due date is Dec 3, and the last day of classes is the 2nd. Assuming I go 40 weeks, then I have no problem. If I go more like 38 weeks (DD was born 38w5d), then I've got about a week and a half of classes to cover. I don't think that's enough to take the fall quarter off -- I want to take the winter instead anyways. Aparently my TA in the fall is great and has done the class before several times. I figure I might work with her to pass off the class at the last minute in exchange for my doing more of the TA-type duties in the earlier part of the quarter.

I'm in my first year here, I'm an assistant professor with zero status in a relatively child-phobic department.

post #51 of 92
Rainy, thanks for your thoughts! So far the week has gone well. Living a 10-minute bike ride from campus really helps, and DH is great (except that he is apparently out for a walk with DS right now when I should be breastfeeding!!). Meetings and things outside my regular teaching schedule are going to be the problem. I'm finding I can do tons of stuff for my classes through Blackboard, which is a big help.

Geofizz, sounds like your timing is just like mine was last year. I would recommend waiting until after the 12th week of your pregnancy. That is a well-respected cut off date for telling people, and gives you time to plan. I was very apprehensive, as this is my first year, but my chair took it very well, despite the fact that I'm in a more or less childless department. I think your plan to arrange something with your TA sounds like you're on the right track--just make sure you have a very clear agreement up front so that the TA won't feel taken advantage of and your chair is aware of the agreement. Also, have everything (syllabus, exams, assignments) made up in advance, make sure you do that in case your baby comes early or you need bedrest or some other unlikely event... Congratulations!!
post #52 of 92
Ug, don't make me talk to my chair. Please. Pretty please.

Twelve weeks would be right about the end of the current quarter, so I don't think it's reasonable to push it any further than that. Who knows, maybe an astute observer will notice I no longer drink coffee. The woman that works at the cafe guessed this afternoon when I asked for decaf green tea. She said "what, are you pregnant or something?!?" I was with another assistant prof and I don't think he made anything of it.
post #53 of 92
Originally Posted by Geofizz
You might also want to call the chair of the search and ask for suggestions on your next interview. Try and get some feedback.
I'm curious what others think of this suggestion. I've been tempted to do it, but (1) they actually haven't told me I didn't get the job and (2) I've heard (I think I read in the chronicle advice column) that asking this makes you look insecure and that it's best to assume you did everything right, in hopes that they will retain the impression of you as secure and confident in case some other opening comes up or they are talking about you to others in your field, etc.

Has anyone done this? Was the feedback helpful?
post #54 of 92
Oh, Chiedza, I'm so sorry you dont think you got the job! Darn!! I know that, at our (state) university, there are pretty strict rules about what kind of contact the search committee members can have with job candidates, before and after offers go out. If someone had contacted me about their interview, after not getting the job, I'd have had to be very obtuse and not very forthcoming. In person, that could be a little different, I think, but over e-mail (especially), and telephone, we werent' really allowed to give much feedback -- fears of litigation, I guess. So I don't know that I'd recommend asking the Chair -- especially since you haven't heard officially yet. I would recommend the passive-agressive route of getting your advisor or some other recommender to find out for you, though! In most cases, if you made the short list, you probably just werent the right "fit" -- which can mean a whole host of things, most of which you can do nothing about, and most of which would change for any other job.

Geofizz -- Congratulations!! : I was in the same boat, too -- due finals week in December. I think Eruditia gave you great advice, and you DO have to talk to your chair. I am really lucky, in a friendly and very pro-child dept (rare for my field). I told everyone within two months! Tell him (I assume) a week or two before this term ends, I think. And spend the summer making a huge contingency plan -- all lecture notes done, all exams written, all homework assignments written with an answer key -- you can't assume you'll go all 40 weeks (as you well know, with kids already). Be sure to tell the chair, the TA,and the dept. secretaries that you have a plan, and how to access it. And, can you give your final earlier, so you can have grading done? We can, if we don't call the final a "final" but rather just an exam!

Eruditia, glad to hear its going well! Yeah, committee work ... I am running for a really heavy workload committee that would start next fall ... and I plan to take Wyatt to the twice-monthly meetings wtih me. Maybe I'm insane???!!!
post #55 of 92

guess what just came in the mail!!


my authors copies just arrived, all 10 of them, and I get to see my book in print, beautiful dust jacket and all. its the second (third) most exciting thing to ever happen in my life. I'm so proud of the book, and so happy with the press, and excited for what it may bring -- its gotten good advance word from people in my field, and their kind words really mean a lot to me. I wrote on an explosive, politicized/political topic (I'm a political scientist) and it helps to have some good will out there!

I'm so excited!!
post #56 of 92
Originally Posted by chiedza
Has anyone done this? Was the feedback helpful?
friends who are professors (married couple, now employed in the same dept.) suggested to me to call if you feel like you connected with someone. So say you thought maybe you'd collaborate with someone there, or youjust had a really good chat over coffee with someone...call that person. But I'd wait till the job is announced to someone.
post #57 of 92
Originally Posted by rainy32
I get to see my book in print, beautiful dust jacket and all.
whew! I'm very impressed that you published something that will come out with a dust jacket. My dh is a historian and expects to try for trade paperback....
post #58 of 92
Congrats Rainy! So exciting!

post #59 of 92

leave replacement position?

Have any of you prof-mamas ever taken one year leave replacement positions? I'm not done with my Ph.D. yet (although I'm close), but I applied for one leave replacement position this year because it looked almost perfect (great department, lots of support, teaching classes I'm interested in, etc.). Reading between the lines, it sounds like if I don't bomb the interview, I have the job. BUT - it's on the other side of the country. This means relocating my family (including my post-doc dh who would need to find work there) across the country for only one year. Is it worth it? Have any of you done this? From a career standpoint, I think it could be a great opportunity and would give me a chance to test out teaching and see if that's what I want to pursue long-term. From a family standpoint, it's a logistical nightmare. I do have some family in the area, and my mom has agreed to come stay with us if my dh has to travel, but still... I'm torn. Any advice?

Added to this mess is the fact that both my and dh's funding run out sometime in the middle of next year, so we need something. And my dh has a tenure-track interview in 3 weeks in a completely different part of the country.
post #60 of 92
hmmm. I've contemplated this a number of times. In a nutshell -- how's your research coming along? Everyone I know who has moved away from their institution to take a job has not finished (3 people). If you're within spitting distance of finishing then it might be more doable.

I agree that it makes family decisions a problem. But then again...no income is also a problem. How old is your kiddo? What's your daycare plan currently vs. if you took the job and your dh had a job?

Can either of you find local community college work? That has been a lifesaver for both my dh and I. I begin teaching this summer at the local cc. Dh has been teaching there for three years now. It seriously cuts into research time, but he's been teaching online, enabling us to limit our daycare time.

I'd try for the job and then decide when you get it. My experience has been thus far (no full time, permanent work yet...) that opportunities abound all at once. I forget, are you a geologist?, if so it appears that the market is hot right now for masters level people. At least my in box has been flooded with people hiring in Minnesota and Nevada. perhaps the same is true where you are?

My funding runs out in August. I'm teaching at the cc level this summer and will continue this fall, but managed to fall into a great ra position on campus. More non research related stuff than my current ra, but it pays benefits and tuition. The position is in a computer lab, I'm a geologist. But I applied because my friend was creative enough to realize that the position was advertised to all of the college of science and engineering, not just ocmputer science. So he got it last year and i got it this year. There's a flood of geolgists in the video and digital imaging lab.
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