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Looking for other professor mamas - Page 2

post #21 of 409
I'm bumping up this thread and happy to join. I'm in my first year of a tt job at a big university and have a 1 yr old ds. Very lucky that my husband is a grad-student-on-hold/sahd so I have a lot to be grateful for, but even so, all-night nursing still does not combine well with all-night lecture writing.
post #22 of 409
http://bitchphd.blogspot.com/ is the link.

I've lately been enjoying: http://science-professor.blogspot.com/
The woman who writes that blog is in my field. There are a few clues as to her identity, and my latest time waster is guessing who she is. Great, but scary stuff.

Anyone read "Every other Thursday"? I'm in the middle of it now. Kinda like LLL for professors.

I'm interested to hear how people organize their time to manage to work on both the urgent things (lectures, students walking in the office, etc) with the long-term things like paper writing and reading journal articles.
post #23 of 409
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geofizz View Post
I'm interested to hear how people organize their time to manage to work on both the urgent things (lectures, students walking in the office, etc) with the long-term things like paper writing and reading journal articles.
I can tell you that this is a REAL struggle for me. It is very, very hard for me to let stuff go as a teacher so I tend to WAY over prep and put in a ton of time grading and meeting with students. Ideally, I would dedicate 2 days per week (say T, R) to teaching and teaching-related stuff and then dedicate 2 other days (say M,W) to research stuff only (so no office hours, no answering emails from students, no "drop bys", no prepping, etc.). The last day would be "catch-up" and meeting day. Things like reading articles and staying current with the lliterture happens on an as needed basis (i.e. writing a paper, thinking about a new idea) OR as an hour of reading time in the evening (reading a book for fun? I think I remember being able to do that once upon a time). However, in reality whatever is on fire gets tended to first. Sad but true.
post #24 of 409
I am finishing up my PhD in chemistry (Bioorganic studying using biological systems for nanotechnology) and am pregnant with my first! I should be able to finish before DD is born : . Eventually I will be seeking an academic TT position. This thread has been REALLY helpful to me, Thanks!

My question is this:
I will be taking ~6 months off after the PhD is completed. I then would like to seeking a post doc. Is 6 months a bit long to take off and still be competitive for a research post doc position?
Also, we will be living in Norfolk (DH is in the military) for two years and positions are very limited for my field. I am not sure what to do about that...any suggestions? AFter 2 years, DH is OUT of the NAvy...YAY! and we will be following me and my career....hopefully a TT position, at least eventually.
post #25 of 409
Quote:
Originally Posted by turnipmama View Post
I will be taking ~6 months off after the PhD is completed. I then would like to seeking a post doc. Is 6 months a bit long to take off and still be competitive for a research post doc position?
I think the best might be something like this:

Finish and defend in April. Start looking for a postdoc NOW, making it clear you intend to start in November but your dissertation is in the final stages. Sit on the paperwork for the degree until you are ready to dive back in. That way, if you are still looking after the baby comes, you can just say that all you have to do is file the paperwork, and you won't show a gap on your cv.

The way a lot of grants go, PIs need a postdoc immediately, so they can't wait until November. However, most people can wait and just file an extension on grants.
post #26 of 409
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geofizz View Post
I think the best might be something like this:

Finish and defend in April. Start looking for a postdoc NOW, making it clear you intend to start in November but your dissertation is in the final stages. Sit on the paperwork for the degree until you are ready to dive back in. That way, if you are still looking after the baby comes, you can just say that all you have to do is file the paperwork, and you won't show a gap on your cv.

The way a lot of grants go, PIs need a postdoc immediately, so they can't wait until November. However, most people can wait and just file an extension on grants.
This is excellent advice. Avoid gaps in your CV at all costs (even if you are taking some time off to be with the baby) and I really wouldn't tell anyone you are taking time off. I am not sure exactly how publications work in your field, but I am plan to conduct a bunch of experiments before I have my baby (do all of the data collection and lab stuff while I still can) and then write the studies up and submit for publication after the baby (writing and data analysis can be done from home). This way I can take a few months away from the lab, but still be productive.
post #27 of 409
Quote:
Originally Posted by dctexan View Post
This is excellent advice. Avoid gaps in your CV at all costs (even if you are taking some time off to be with the baby) and I really wouldn't tell anyone you are taking time off. I am not sure exactly how publications work in your field, but I am plan to conduct a bunch of experiments before I have my baby (do all of the data collection and lab stuff while I still can) and then write the studies up and submit for publication after the baby (writing and data analysis can be done from home). This way I can take a few months away from the lab, but still be productive.
This is the plan so far, I will finish my labwork in April and then be writing my dissertation and some publications after DD is born and plan to graduate in August or December....thanks for lettine me know gaps in CV is not good, alot of advisors don't tell you that! (mine didn't)
post #28 of 409
So glad to see this thread. I am in my 6th year in a tt position, and I got tenure at the end of my fourth year... I also thought I would be slacking off post-tenure, but it is quite the opposite.:

I teach at a comprehensive university with a high teaching load, but I still have expectations for research/scholarship. We have 4 children, and DH works full-time also. All I can say is our lives are a big juggling act!!

Only in summer I have time to think about research, and I have had to move into an "easier" field so I can have some publications during this intensive child-rearing period. I have to balance the drive to stay professionally active with my much stronger desire to spend time with my kids since summer is when I can really catch up with their lives.

I wish there was some way to make it possible for women in academia to take time for child-rearing and still return to their careers. This will make it a lot easier to encourage young women to go into academia...

Still I believe most of us have really interesting fulfilling jobs!!
post #29 of 409
Quote:
Originally Posted by dessismama View Post
I wish there was some way to make it possible for women in academia to take time for child-rearing and still return to their careers. This will make it a lot easier to encourage young women to go into academia...
Yes, it seems sort of backwards. When you are working your tail off trying to get tenure is when it seems you are also in the thick of things with little kids.

*IF* I am granted tenure this Spring, I've been thinking about maybe dropping down some of my hours, so I'd be home more. Can't get too excited about that option though, since the tenure question is still looming. If I don't get tenure then I'll be out of a job and will have all kinds of time on my hands, right?
post #30 of 409
Hello Everybody! I am brand new here, and sooooo glad to finally join.

I am also tt professor in psychology. I specialize in cognition, language and development. I am currently preparing my third year review and have one child who is one year old.

I am actually feeling quite good about the balance I have struck between work and family. Indeed,the year I took my FMLA was my most productive year in terms of pubs.

the key for me was finding QUALITY daycare.

I love being able to share stories and perspectives with other professional mamas.

Are you guys familiar with the Advance program (funded by NSF)? It has worked wonders here on campus for advancing women faculty in the sciences.

HAPPY TO MEET ALL OF YOU!
post #31 of 409
Quote:
Originally Posted by dctexan View Post
I can tell you that this is a REAL struggle for me. It is very, very hard for me to let stuff go as a teacher so I tend to WAY over prep and put in a ton of time grading and meeting with students. Ideally, I would dedicate 2 days per week (say T, R) to teaching and teaching-related stuff and then dedicate 2 other days (say M,W) to research stuff only (so no office hours, no answering emails from students, no "drop bys", no prepping, etc.). The last day would be "catch-up" and meeting day. Things like reading articles and staying current with the lliterture happens on an as needed basis (i.e. writing a paper, thinking about a new idea) OR as an hour of reading time in the evening

This is precisely what I do.

I also want to echo some other things that have been said
(1) I love being a prof. I find it to be rewarding and fulfilling
(2) Thank goodness that we don't have to punch clocks
(3) I am happy to serve as an example to younger female doctoral students. I often bring my baby to campus, or wear him around...I think the visibility is a GOOD thing.
post #32 of 409

visibility

I agree with the point about visibility! On that subject, I've been rethinking the message on my pumping sign on my office door. Right now it's just something generic like "Please do not disturb; office will be available in 15 minutes." My pregnancy seemed to happen at the beginning of a trend on my campus--now we have a few more women having children (when it seemed like I was the only one ever to have a baby based on the initial reaction to my maternity leave needs). I'd like to be more visible, especially with the AP choices, but I also want to be professional, kwim?

I'm curious to know what the other prof mamas out there do in terms of visibility...? Anyone have any pumping/BFing experiences to share?
post #33 of 409
I understand what you mean by maintaining professionalism. Here is how I see it: There is no need to flaunt what you are doing as a mom, but no reason to hide it either.

This comes up in my mind alot when we schedule meetings. Some senior faculty have advised me to never mention not being able to make a meeting b/c of a need to pick up my child or child related issue. I could not disagree more. If that's the reason I can't make a meeting at 7pm, well that's the reason. At the same time, I won't go out of my way to talk about my parental duties when it's not called for.

If the other faculty like me to attend receptions at 6pm, after daycare hours but before DH is home..well I'll go...with my baby in a sling!
post #34 of 409
Quote:
Originally Posted by huggingmama View Post

I'm curious to know what the other prof mamas out there do in terms of visibility...? Anyone have any pumping/BFing experiences to share?
Not pumping any more, but when I was I left the pump out and set up on my desk all day since I was pumping 3x a day. Several times people would ask me what it was and I would tell them. The only "weird" reactions I got were from a couple older guys who seemed to get very embarrassed.

I'm always very upfront about child care and my need to arrange schedules with my DH if someone wants me to do something outside of my "normal" schedule.
post #35 of 409
Hello!

Just wanted to say hi! I'm a nursing professor....I was teaching at a 4 year nursing program (and felt the pressure and stress of having to become tenured...), but since we moved to CA....I teaching nursing at a community college and they are happy with "just my masters". We have a tenure process (4 years), but it's not as vigorous. I still have the academic schedule and benefits which is soooo great since I don't know how people maintain sanity with 2 people working a 9-5ish job!
post #36 of 409
just want to say hi! I used to be on this thread more when I was pregnant and home for the first nine months with ds. now I can barely keep up

to tell the truth, I'm feeling a little overwhelmbed, really for the first time in my academic career. and I hope to be able to post about it soon. Short story: left a tt-track job one year before tenure, to take my dream job in a dream part of the country (for us), and now I'm freaking out because I was ONE YEAR FROM TENURE what did I do?? : I have four years here, until I go up, but I feel so busy...

anyway, I'll post more later and I look forward to spending some of the semester with you mamas.

-rainy
post #37 of 409
Quote:
Originally Posted by rainy32 View Post
to tell the truth, I'm feeling a little overwhelmbed, really for the first time in my academic career. and I hope to be able to post about it soon. Short story: left a tt-track job one year before tenure, to take my dream job in a dream part of the country (for us), and now I'm freaking out because I was ONE YEAR FROM TENURE what did I do?? : I have four years here, until I go up, but I feel so busy...

anyway, I'll post more later and I look forward to spending some of the semester with you mamas.

-rainy

Rainy, good for you for being brave enough to give up the relative security of your old position for your dream job! Dream jobs are few and far between and you absolutely have to take them if the opportunity presents itself. I hope your semester is off to a good start
post #38 of 409
Rainy: Congrats on your decision, I totally respect and admire you for following your heart.

My thought of the day: Since having a child, I am more focused and productive at work

Anyone else feel this way? I am very pleasantly surprised to see that having a baby allowed me to get my schedule together and to really be much more on task. I feel better than ever about my tenure prospects. I notice that papers are getting out more quickly and things are just well, getting done!

I also love how I have two parts of my day to look forward to: Going to work and then reuniting w/my son.
post #39 of 409
I think I am the only part-timer here? I teach at a state U, 2 classes only, and have a 4 year old and a 10 month old. I'll be teaching 3 next quarter--2 sections of one and 1 other. No benefits of course, no contract.

I don't really have access to the uni daycare, as students come first, and I don't even have an office. I meet with students in the cafe or in an empty classroom. I have to wait in line with the students to buy my parking pass. It sucks.

I have brought the baby to meet with students occasionally, but I feel in a precarious position since I have absolutely zero job security. I am only away from her for 4 hours so I don't pump, but next quarter I'll have longer days and will probably be pumping in my car.

I am looking for TT but they're hard to come by in my field (history). Time to publish? Ha. I'm thinking of giving up on academia and either a) opening a yarn store or b) teaching at some hippy private high school in Vermont.
post #40 of 409
Quote:
Originally Posted by rainy32 View Post
to tell the truth, I'm feeling a little overwhelmbed, really for the first time in my academic career. and I hope to be able to post about it soon. Short story: left a tt-track job one year before tenure, to take my dream job in a dream part of the country (for us), and now I'm freaking out because I was ONE YEAR FROM TENURE what did I do?? : I have four years here, until I go up, but I feel so busy...
Wow. Did they give you years of credit toward tenure when you started? Or did they tell you you can go up early if you want? There seems to be weird culture here that nothing you did before you came to this institution really counts for much, which I think is odd. But people say that to get tenure you have to prove you can be successful HERE.
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