Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Second time 'round

For any young 'uns out there who are gearing up for their first market season we know things aren't going to be good. Hell good markets aren't that good. I just wanted to say staring at your second market it less scary. You really do have a better idea of how everything works and it's nice to start out with a decent material ready to go. This is a multi-year process. As someone mentioned in comments the other day, the stiff competition isn't other ABDs or fresh PhDs. The most serious candidates are those that have been out 2-3 years who have much more extensive teaching experience and publications. I mean, go look at the leiter list of hires. It's both comforting (oh, I didn't really have a chance at getting that job) and frustrating (oh, I didn't really have a chance at getting that job). What you're doing now isn't just for this market, or the next. It's for the next few years. That's not to say you shouldn't work hard now, but, at least for me right now, taking a longer view on the whole processes makes the day-to-day steps easier.

-- Second Suitor

5 comments:

Mickey Wolfmann said...

Even though the market is going to be a nightmare this year in terms of the number of TT-jobs (I know, I know... there will probably be a whole bunch of 1-years and research fellowships), I have to admit that already having been on the market last year (for the first time) has given me a much better perspective. One thing I have learned from last year is to ignore the wiki, discussion boards, and most profession-oriented blogs (even this one once November hits, and I really do enjoy this blog). Why? They make the situation worse. I somehow go from thinking about market-oriented stuff every 7 seconds to thinking about it every 2 seconds. In addition, none of the news is good, and some of the information should be re-classified as misinformation. Finally, after obsessing over the market so long and having that obsession exaggerated by watching the wiki, blogs, and discussion boards, it becomes very tempting to think that there is some kind of formula for getting THE job. There is not a formula. Teaching experience? Matters at some places to some people who may or may not be on the search committee. Same goes for publishing. Same goes for journal ranking. Same goes for pedigree. The truth is that applicants simply have to put themselves out there into the void and keep plugging along. There is no magic formula that works for the desirable jobs or for just any job. If there's some asshole on the SC who simply does not like you because of your accent or your hair or whatever, those are the breaks. The fact that you published in The Platinum Journal opposed to the Bayleaf Journal might be inconsequential. Or it might mean everything. Academia can be a hamfisted troll that punches you in the mouth. At least this time those of us who were out there last year are a little more ready for it.

Anonymous said...

I notice that there are several positions every year for jobs in Canada. I am going on the market for the first time this year and I am wondering whether a US citizen has a realistic shot at these positions or not.

Anonymous said...

"I am wondering whether a US citizen has a realistic shot at these positions [in Canadian departments] or not."
Yes, absolutely. Many Americans are teaching in Canadian departments. Apply!

Anonymous said...

I'm fairly positive Canadian departments have to give preference to Canadian citizens, but that shouldn't discourage you from applying anyways.

Popkin said...

That thing about preference for Canadians at the bottom of every Canadian job ad is really just a legal formality.