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Reflections

Moving beyond competition after graduation

I recently wrote a post about my experiences in responding to questions after graduation, the “so, how are you?” and “what are you doing now?”

Imagine it. You recently graduated with a doctorate having put in numerous years and huge amounts of effort in academic pursuits ranging from conferences, presentations, to the final dissertation and defense. After graduation, you take a breath of relief. Then suddenly the academic push continues again, yet not in the expected forms of writing, research, and applying/interviewing for jobs, but in a different form—in determining how to respond to everyone who asks, “what are you doing now that you’ve graduated?” The implied message resonates on the lines of “don’t you have a full-time academic job since you spent all this time and money dedicated to getting an advanced degree?”

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