A question arose on the Twitts, to whit, how many years of postdoc training are required before getting a faculty level job. I’ll be flexible here, this is not just tenure track but let’s keep it to academic science and a professorial type equivalent appointment. Something that lets you apply for research grant funding and is not explicitly “training” or temporary or whatnot.

I am most curious about the trends over time. So I want to break this down by the year you were first appointed. Answer the appropriate poll for your case please.

First up, the youngsters:

Okay battle hardened, no-longer-noobians…your turn.

Okay oldsters, we know you all had it totally made in the shade when you were exiting graduate school….

Thought of the day: if the core faculty of a doctoral program cannot reel off a good thumbnail sketch of their graduate’s professional destinations, there is a problem.

Also: A “top” program that cannot point to a healthy and steady number of faculty appointments over last decades….isn’t.

Quite a few folks around the Intertoobs have commented to the effect that we have too many mouths to be fed by NIH grants. They suggest that we need to take steps to cut down on the “overproduction” of PhD scientists who are, in large numbers, aiming to land independent research positions.

Mid April is the time when graduate programs are wrapping up their admit / acceptance lists for Fall 2012. I’ve heard on the order of a half dozen programs bragging about record numbers of doctoral students lined up for their next class of entry.

Are you kidding me?

Please Dear Reader…tell me you know of programs that are intentionally downsizing?