What to do as a scientist between jobs

  • Job Skills
  • Thread starter TeethWhitener
  • Start date
  • #1
TeethWhitener
Science Advisor
Gold Member
2,076
1,555
There have been a few threads recently about scientists having trouble landing jobs, either fresh out of school or after leaving a former job. People have been wondering what they should be doing to remain engaged with the scientific community to increase their employability. I saw this article in Nature today and thought it might be of some interest:

https://www.nature.com/articles/d41...d-id=14106ABD036EC3920182767E690C23E19ADCA95E
 
  • Like
  • Informative
Likes jedishrfu, jasonRF, gwnorth and 4 others

Answers and Replies

  • #2
analogdesign
Science Advisor
1,149
367
This is a good article and highlights some of the real challenges in having a relationship between two academics. The jobs are few and far between and become more so the more specialized you are. The author made the right call moving back to the US if the ultimate goal was to continue his career. Missing out on his child’s growth is heartbreaking.

This has been a problem forever. One of the professors in my graduate school was married for 20 years to a spouse on the opposite coast. In my own life, I moved from the east coast to the west coast of the USA for a dream job and my partner stayed on the east coast. We were very lucky indeed that we were only separated for less than a year before she found a position in the same metro area as me.

Academic spouses is a truly hard problem. For high level hires, the hiring department can often help find work for the other spouse. Usually, though, in couples I know who both were academics, one or more of them ended up leaving the academy. I know I’m a special case, but that mostly comes down to luck.
 
Last edited:
  • #3
13,049
6,931
Corporate hires could be different in that the one being hired might be able to secure a place for his/her spouse as well especially if they have skills needed by the employer.
 
  • #4
symbolipoint
Homework Helper
Education Advisor
Gold Member
6,399
1,285
The way to treat the question depends on how loosely you mean, "Scientists", and I guess, whether you meant scientists for the regular working world or scientists in the academic world.

When someone finds himself between jobs, the choices are which can possibly be combined,
  • Look for a job
  • Go to school to learn something, like maybe a single course which is either interesting or practical or both
  • Study something on your own, possibly related to your work.
 
  • #5
13,049
6,931
Start your own company could be there as well even though its arguably more difficult to do.
 
  • #6
jtbell
Mentor
15,811
4,064
the real challenges in having a relationship between two academics.
These were well known even when I was a graduate student 40+ years ago, as the "two-body problem."

My roommate during most of graduate school "hooked up" with another physics grad student the year before I finished. First they moved somewhere he could get a postdoc, and she did the best she could, job-wise. Then they moved somewhere she could get a postdoc, and he did the best he could, job-wise. Last I heard, many years ago, he got a position at Livermore Laboratories, no word about what she did. I lost touch with them so I have no idea what happened afterwards.

I didn't "hook up" until after I arrived at the college where I taught for many years. My wife was already tenured, in a completely different field (humanities). Fortunately I also got tenure in due course, not much of a challenge at that college, in those days. We're now retired, and still living in that town.

There were (and are) some other "faculty couples" in similar situations at the college. More common is/was the situation with one spouse on the faculty and the other (usually with a non-academic background) employed in the administration, the library, etc.
 

Related Threads on What to do as a scientist between jobs

  • Last Post
Replies
2
Views
2K
Replies
2
Views
3K
  • Last Post
Replies
1
Views
3K
Replies
2
Views
919
Replies
1
Views
3K
Replies
76
Views
7K
  • Last Post
Replies
9
Views
3K
  • Last Post
Replies
10
Views
4K
  • Last Post
Replies
13
Views
3K
Top