Blogrolling: The Alternative Scientist

July 1, 2008

Are you a graduate student, postdoctoral trainee or even a professor who is considering some other career path than the traditional professorial, research-heavy appointment? The Mad Hatter and The Bean-Mom are the main conspirators behind a new group blog called “The Alternative Scientist“. From the opening post:

The impetus to start an alternative careers blog came from both my own struggles to find the right career path for me, and the observation that open discussions about alternative career options are still relatively scarce in academia. I’m thrilled to be joined by several other excellent science bloggers who have their own experiences and ideas about alternative science careers to share. They are listed on the sidebar with links to their own blogs, so go check them out!

Go Read.

No Responses Yet to “Blogrolling: The Alternative Scientist”

  1. Becca Says:

    Great blog, thanks for the link!


  2. Thanks for the link – maybe I can learn there where I misplaced my link to an article in The Scientist (I think) citing statistics showing that >50% of life sciences PhDs were not in traditional t-t positions, thereby making t-t positions the alternative career track.
    I only have half of my tongue in my cheek because I believe that the sooner we drop this term “alternative careers,” the better it will be for all of us who feel the pressure to be just like our mentors. Yes, I know that everyone understands what “alternative careers” means. But I think that destigmatizing this/these path(s) will help some people to cultivate the energy of activation to get out of unending postdocs or crappy soft-money faculty positions that they hate.


  3. Mad Hatter Says:

    Thanks for the link-love, DM! For the record, CAE of VWXYNot? and rENNISance woman was my first co-conspirator. Just wanted to give credit where it’s due.
    Abel Pharmboy–I completely agree that non-tt paths need to be destigmatized. My feeling is that the most efficient way to accomplish that is to encourage people who are considering these paths to come out of hiding. Destigmatization will happen when talented scientists openly choose these paths, rather than interviewing and leaving academia quietly and thereby giving the impression that they are slinking away with their tails between their legs. After all, a large part of the reason these paths are still perceived as “alternative” when, as you point out, it may well be tt positions that are truly alternative, is because nobody talks about them in academia.


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