Hello Bio Careers community! I am excited to have joined the rest of the bloggers in this little endeavor.Just to give a little perspective, I am a cell biologist at heart, and my training has been focused in the biomedical sciences. I am one of those crazy people who believe that academic science is, and should always be, fun. I also think that it should serve a greater good by providing new ways to tackle devastating diseases.
Today, I want to discuss something that I think half the population (at least) will never have considered. The other half will probably think about it at some point in their lives. For some, it is an easy decision, while for others (and that includes myself), it is problematic. I am alluding to whether you should change your name or not.
Fear is defined by many as being afraid or apprehensive. We all have thousands of fears, many of which are very rational. These rational fears ultimately prevent us from being hurt in some way. We also all have hundreds or thousands of irrational fears. These irrational fears canprevent us from doing things that would ultimately allow us to be happier and more successful.
Sometimes the science career track can feel like a track you are stuck on. If you are starting to feel like your career options are limited to being faculty or failure, or that you just want to give up and go back to school to learn a trade, you might not be aware of some of the really interesting career resources that are out there. Since I’ve been working in career education, I’m in touch with a number of interesting resources that might be useful to people who need some inspiration looking outside the tenure track box for their career.
There is a heart-wrenching myth among us PhDs, which is that PhDs are failures if they do not obtain a tenure track faculty position. The “failure myth” has been perpetuated for decades and has thus been heard by most all graduate students and postdoctoral fellows (and many others…). This myth is wrong, very wrong.
Many of us have become accustomed to traveling with carrying a number of electronics when we travel. I will often have my iPhone, my iPad mini, and a laptop, as each serves a different purpose. I try to keep each as “clean” as possible, so that if one if stolen or lost, I’m losing just the physical hardware. My data is on my office desktop and backed up to a local hard drive and to the cloud, using Carbonite. But there is another reason that I try to keep my travel devices clean.
Every employment-based immigrant must wait for his priority date to be current before he can become a legal permanent resident. Understanding the priority date is especially important for scientists who were born in China (mainland), India, Mexico, and the Philippines.
Recruiters that specialize in your specific area of interest can be a tremendous asset to a job search. These individuals are experts on companies hiring in your field, company hiring preferences, company cultures, growth trajectories, relevant roles and titles for your experience level, industry trends, and hiring cycles. Their experience allows them to ask pertinent questions and dive deep into what you are looking for, and provide insight for your search.
I’m not a New Year’s resolution practitioner, but what I do like to do at the end of the year/beginning of a new year is to think about my goals. Goal setting is a best practice for all professionals and especially those who are looking to make personal and professional advances. What you have to keep in mind is that you are much more likely to succeed if you set goals rather than just taking your career and life in general as it comes.
Today I am going to broach a subject which is really quite tricky, and as scientists I am not sure that we are really trained or prepared to do it. My subject today is that we should not take things personally. I know that we have all defended hypotheses in either public or private settings; but how many of us defend our idea due to its merits and not because it is our idea? I am sure most of us say that it is always due to the merits, but is it?