Thursday, September 06, 2007

 

Notes on the First Week Back


Comments:
DD: So some very smart people feel trapped in some very inhospitable places, with predictable effects on morale. Nobody told me that when I arrived in grad school – I got the “great wave of retirements” line, as did everybody else.

I think the "wave of retirement" line is given in a lot of fields. This was also supposed to happen among librarians, but according to some GenX&Y'ers this has not really panned out.

DD:Bitch breaks the final cultural taboo and posts concrete info about her income and expenses, essentially to wonder how it's possible to make six figures (!) and still feel strapped. . . .you can cut out all the lattes you want, the real culprit is housing costs."

That's for sure! In Big Urban Area where I live this is definitely the true. You can actually qualify for certain types of subsidized housing in some cases, even making uncomfortably close to 6 figures. To say that there is something vaguely disturbing about that would be to put it mildly.

Welcome back! :-) I know I'm looking forward to a productive year, that is, if the world doesn't get blown up during that time.
 
My favourite P.G. Wodehouse line:
'He looked like he had been poured into his trousers and forgotten to say "when."'
 
“He shriveled like a salted snail.” Love the alliteration, and the way it slides off the tongue.

Would this be personal or professional conversation that you'll try to integrate the quote?
 
Macs, Cars, Macs, Cars. Sigh...
 
This is really directed to bibkit's comment, but indirectly to DD's original remark.

Part of my physics jobs series (still incomplete now that school has started) looked at the recent job situation in physics. See
http://doctorpion.blogspot.com/2007/07/physics-jobs-part-2.html
for the article with the bulk of the relevant data. It is not a "wave", but the reason there are about 450 physics openings per year (compare to 1200+ PhDs per year) is the fact that 1/6 of physics faculty are over 65.

The wave is damped out by people like a former colleague I ran into in July who was hired in 1964 (directly out of grad school) and retired in 2003. The data (lots of links in that same article) indicating more openings below the R1 level compared to the number of faculty at that level are consistent with the ease of staying around a long time if you have a 1/1 teaching load and don't smoke.

As I point out with data, the GenX who got a degree at an R1 and is only looking for R1 jobs is missing most of the boats.
 
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