Sunday, December 13, 2009

Sunday Comics

I know that it's probably too early to despair, but still. I'm beginning to attain a whole new level of respect for those of you who have done this more than once.

Keep your ears to the ground, friends (while avoiding the wiki); hopefully, things start to happen for those of us it hasn't happened for already.

-- Jaded Dissertator

60 comments:

zombie said...

Heavy sigh. Just glad I have another year and a half on my fellowship. Was kinda hoping I'd get a nibble or two this year.

Anonymous said...

Is it too early to despair? A good portion of the advertised jobs have already called people. I thought next week would be the big week, but I guess I was wrong. I'm not without interviews, but I don't expect to make it to the next round. . . . My CV is much better than it was last year, but I'm getting fewer calls. Strange. I won't loose all hope until next Friday, but most is gone.

I'm not sure that I trust the wiki. There's been a lot of activity from Iowa City, for instance. I don't buy it.

Anonymous said...

I'm trying to figure out why that image resonates with me, despite the apparent lack of alcohol. God knows I try not to stand naked on slippery surfaces when I've been drinking.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure that I trust the wiki. There's been a lot of activity from Iowa City, for instance.

What do you mean?

Anonymous said...

I hope this was at least partially inspired by Tobias Funke.

Anonymous said...

I'm in despair...

Anonymous said...

I'm new to the Smoker. So, who is the author of those drawings? They are just great. Actually that shower image immediately made me think of a story some senior philosopher related (in some blog) about his first year on the market: after he bombed his APA interviews he found himself in the shower sobbing uncontrollably.

Anonymous said...

The number of updates from Iowa City has been very high. I don't believe that anyone is getting that many interviews. There's no way a grad student could stir that much enthusiasm in this market. And there is only one assistant prof. Most of the updates are in ethics, and he doesn't work that much in ethics. At least none of his articles under review are in ethics. He looks very good, that's not my point. But he doesn't look like a sweep in ethics. Besides, he's got a great job already and he's probably not silly enough to update the wiki. I suppose it could be a combination of different students: Lots of different grad students are getting the ethics interviews. But that doesn't sound right either. That would be great for U Iowa, but it's not plausible given the number of students they have. Only 3 or so list ethics. None appear to show up on philpapers. It would be an amazing coincidence. . . . So, I suspect that there is a vandal. The only problem is that they updated the wiki just after I got called. I didn't update it. So they may know something after all. Good luck Iowa. But I hope I win.

Anonymous said...

Anon 5:57

To point out the obvious, making speculations that can easily be traced back to individual people is a pretty asshole thing to do (you study ethics, huh?). Why don't you post what university you're at so people can make speculations about you?

I'm also glad to know that you're using the wikis for their intended purposes: stalking the possible competition, and slandering them anonymously. Way to be non-creepy and classy.

Anyways, good luck to everyone in the next few weeks (and beautiful drawing by Jaded D!)

Anonymous said...

Anon, 5:57, the Iowa City applicant claims to have three interviews. Three doesn't seem to me "that many." Also, Iowa City Fordham interview post is collaborated by another IP address. Iowa City is not the only IP claiming three interviews. Let's stop worrying about this.

Anonymous said...

"A good portion of the advertised jobs have already called people."

For what AOSes? Also, are you only talking about R1s, LACs? Considering the fact that most of the places to which I have applied have explicitly stated that they won't be scheduling interviews until next week, I doubt that this is the case.

Anonymous said...

I had an interview already, bombed it...but they were complete asses. If they did offer me the flyout I'd tell them to go screw themselves.

That was the only interview that I had this year, so I am hoping that I get at least one more for the APA, but I realize that hoping for that may be greedy. I think one interview from the 50 or so apps I sent out is fantastic, given my rather "not so fashionable" interests and AOS.

In any case, I think there is a point beyond despair where you are basically like, "Fuck it." This is my first "real" year on the market, and like another poster said, this year's CV is ten times better than last (I have about 7-9 pubs and a book forthcoming, most articles in fairly good journals.)

It is true that many of the schools I applied to are still accepting apps, per the wiki, so that is what is giving me hope. Until those green little boxes turn yellow, or until Saturday the 19th I will still have hope (I nabbed an interview last year literally the week before the APA, I was at Denny's and it was 9am, yes, on a Saturday morning when they called. So odd.)

But, after the 19th then if no one calls I re-enter despair mode.

Good luck y'all. Remember, if they mess with you during an interview stay polite, you can always tell them to shove it later on down the road. I was literally ignored, pushed around, cut off, and degraded and humiliated during this past interview...and like I said, given that that was the only interview I had for this year makes for disappointment. Gosh, that department was SUCH a bunch of assholes. Why even bother interviewing me if from the get-go you'll behave like that? That's alright, once I do find tenure and am protected I still have that little checkmark in my head about that SC that gave me such a problem that one year. Yep. Payback is a bitch.

Anonymous said...

The new wiki has a link for each update. You click, it brings you to a map for the IP. That's not stalking. And that's not slander. Good lord. Calm down. A year back there was some vandal from outside of Chicago. The vandal started by updating all sorts of things. Then they started making a mess. I wouldn't think that an applicant with lots of interviews would do this. Why would a worry about vandalism be slander? We aren't talking about the same person. In any case, I'd swear I saw 8 from Iowa. I may be wrong. If it's 3, then that's no big deal. I may have confused Iowa and some other I's. It's hard to remember IP addresses. Someone else mentioned the same thing to me. . . In any case, I'll check later. It just got to be suspicious.

Anonymous said...

Ok. Yes. I only see a few. It's not as strange as it at first appeared. The only reason it stands out is because they are the first or only person to have updated the wiki in a couple of cases. There are other updates, such as for Scranton, that are by other I's: Ithaca. I no longer suspect vandalism, only low wiki turnout. Given the amount of vandalism in the past, my concern was not unjustified. The old wiki was repeatedly trashed last year.

Anonymous said...

I had an interview already, bombed it...but they were complete asses. If they did offer me the flyout I'd tell them to go screw themselves.

This experience and many others like it show that there can be irrational members on search committes, e.g., those who may scuttle your chances because they hate your clothes, or because you're black or a woman, or have some whimsical, biased reason as most/all people have.

So strategize all you want about clothes, smoker do's & don'ts, but don't forget the wild card: that some SC members never got the memo and break every rule of interviewing as you know it. The trick is to identify these people early.

For intance, if you were interviewing for a position in feminist philosophy, first, you should be a woman. And, second, you should dress like a feminist. These things ought not to count in a philosophy job interview, but sometimes they do.

Anonymous said...

Anon 7.49, I sympathize. Assholes. Could you share with us a few specifics about that hellish interview. What happened?

BunnyHugger said...

This is my fourth time doing a full-scale job search. No callbacks yet, not feeling good about things.

Anonymous said...

Smoke'm if you have them fellas - I have a pack of American Spirit yellows, if you wanna bum one from me.

Jr TT said...

Some of the information here may be of interest to some of you come Jan or Feb:

http://chronicle.com/article/The-Dreaded-Peer-Teaching/49356/

And an unrelated story: I was asked no fewer a couple of illegal questions by an interviewer once. I told interviewer the questions were illegal. I ended up getting the job. And that particular interviewer ended up being my best colleague. What I thought was assholeness was just enthusiasm. (I found out about all the assholeness from some of the others once I got there in the fall.)

Anonymous said...

Anon 8:56,
I would love to, BUT...I feel that the particular SC in question may be lurking out there, somewhere, and possibly reading this. I am the same female/male that posted in the other thread crying about the epic disaster interview of doom; and how this "business" (because that is what philosophy has turned out to be) has broken my heart.

Anonymous said...

JD,

Are you saying that your job search this year is "a wash"!?!

Anonymous said...

What percentage of interviews are scheduled via phone vs. email? My cell phone passed away last night (RIP) and I've got no replacement as of yet. (Great timing, no?)

Anonymous said...

Going back over the list of schools, I was glad to see that some of my fallback options haven't yet called. I never expected to get an interview at Miami Dade, Scranton, or U of the Sciences. I don't feel bad. You know, it's worth a try, but I expected to be burning the postage here. Same goes for the lectureship at Brooklyn College--the one that required a BA in philosophy. . . . That's why I was sure to apply to some sure things, such as Michigan and Cornell. At least I'll have some interviews.

Anonymous said...

10:16

majority are phone calls. unless it is obvious when you call your number that it is out of service, I'd send out an email.

Anonymous said...

Don't send an email. Just check your voicemail a few times a day from someone else's phone. They will leave a message.

Anonymous said...

Anon 10:16,

I wouldn't worry too much. If your name is on the list of people a department wants to interview, they will send you an email if they can't reach you by phone.

Echoing Jr TT's remarks, keep in mind that what appears to be assholish behavior may in some cases (or many) turn out to be social incompetence. You only make yourself look better if you give people the benefit of the doubt and take things in stride.

Best of luck to everyone.

Anonymous said...

WTF! Get a new phone ASAP. What a no-brainer. Don't waste your time moaning about it on the wiki!

Sometimes I just have to laugh.

Anonymous said...

If they don't leave a message in another day or two, you may as well email the fallbacks (like Cornell) and tell them that you couldn't take their call because your phone is dead, but you'd be happy to give them some time at the APA. You'll be like that get who rejects Harvard's rejection letter "because of the volume of rejection letters received from highly qualified schools" and gets admitted because the admissions officers think he's so witty.

Anonymous said...

JR TT: What are "illegal" questions?

Anonymous said...

Each day this week is going to drag... anyone contacted by a search committee today?

zombie said...

Got my first PFO in the mail today. It's good not to be ignored. It was a pleasant PFO, all things considered. Still, I thought I had a shot at that one, given the quirky and esoteric AOS/AOC.

zombie sad.

Jr TT said...

Illegal questions: questions about one's spouse, spouse's job, children.

I'm not sure if illlegal but surely inappropriate questions: where else are you interviewing, have you received an offer yet?

Anonymous said...

Are there also questions which, while not necessarily illegal, are nevertheless expressly prohibited by the APA?

For example, is it inappropriate for a hiring department from a religiously affiliated institution to ask about a candidate's religious views if the job ad does not explicitly state that religious commitment is required for the job?

Anonymous said...

Other illegal questions:

1) Would you like to purchase some highly classified material including but not limited the following state secrets...?

2) Would you like to see my genitals? (written on genitals)

3) Fire? or Does anyone in this crowded theater care that there is a fire?

4) What is your teaching philosophy?

Xenophon said...

Right now only 65.6% of workers have full-time, year-round employment (I think 9-month academic contracts would fall into this category, since in theory we're doing research and teaching prep over the summer; some schools even pay over 12 months for a 9-mo contract).

Moral? If you're getting interview(s) and offer(s), you're lucky. If you're not, blame it on the economy.

Also, remember that there's always a spring job market, and certain types of jobs (e.g., at teaching schools) are disproportionately represented then. My forecast is that the spring market will primarily be one-year VAPs at private schools, but in this market that can be a pretty sweet option.

So don't give up hope if, like me, you'll be at home sipping eggnog during the APA.

Anonymous said...

Is there any need to register with the placement service?

Anonymous said...

Off topic question - has there been a thread on what to ask your interviewers in the awkward "do you have any questions for us?" phase? If so, where is it, and if not, could we have one please?

In the past, I've just said no (and it hasn't stopped me getting a job), but that was outside the US, and I feel like the bar for proving that you're interested in a given job is higher at the APA. I can think of 1000 questions to ask if I were offered the job, but none that are really relevant at interview stage...

Polacrilex said...

Zombie: I think this might have been the year of the quirky and esoteric AOS/AOC.

Anonymous said...

I second Anon 7:03's request for a (pointer to a) discussion of questions to ask when you're asked if you have questions to ask. I have the same reaction that he or she does to that question: "None that really matter unless I get an offer." Since I'm told that 'No' is the wrong answer to that question, I'd love to hear other people's advice.

'Ask questions that show you're interested in the position' is not a helpful answer. I know what the point of the exercise is. What I need to know is how to do it.

zombie said...

Polacrilex, I think you're right. They can basically ask for anything they want this year.

Got a very classy letter from UM Farmington today telling me the position was cancelled, and apologizing to all the applicants for wasting their time/money. It said they had 258 applicants or something like that.

And hey, since someone asked -- got an interview call!

zombie less sad.

Anonymous said...

Amen on that UMaine Farmington letter. Super classy, well-written, really respectful. If only all universities handled themselves with such class. Mine even included a personalized note!

I too got an interview today. First time for everything :)

Now I don't have to spend Xmas even stealing presents from little Whoville children.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps a bit nosy, but for zombie and anon 4:37 pm: are the places that called for interviews posted on the wiki? I'm just following it pretty religiously and I'm super paranoid about hearing that folks get interviews. (Not that I don't wish the best for you. Hurrah! Congrats! But, you know, I want to know if you have interviews at places that I'm still wanting to hear from.)

Anonymous said...

Also, remember that there's always a spring job market, and certain types of jobs (e.g., at teaching schools) are disproportionately represented then.

Not to dash anyone's hopes, but...

Wasn't the spring job market of 2009 worse than usual? Remember how people were saying that since so many tt-jobs were canceled there'd be a corresponding increase in VAPs? Since this (academic) year's market is turning out worse than last year, is there any reason to think this spring will be an improvement over last spring?

Anonymous said...

Zombie: I think this might have been the year of the quirky and esoteric AOS/AOC.

Obviously, the supply-and-demand factor is operative here: a relatively larger pool of applicants increases the likelihood a department can get what it wants. But there's also the workload factor: if you don't want to have to sift through more than 200 applications, then restrict the search so that no more than 200 can reasonably apply.

Frankly, I was surprised to see as many "AOS: open, AOC: open" ads as I did this year. I'd expect those committees to be inundated with applications. Of course, we know how that situation is sometimes resolved.

Polacrilex said...

Tonight I dared to peek at the Philosophy Job Wiki. The most frightening aspect is the InfoSniper! Let's see... Xavier is interviewing someone from Georgetown for their History of Philosophy position. Makes sense. Georgetown and Xavier are both Jesuit schools, which are very good in the history of philosophy. Philosophy of Science position at Xavier? Looks like on candidate from Duke, most likely (*yawn*... makes sense, but how obvious) and one from Harvard (how cliche). I am glad I did not apply to either position.

Anonymous said...

Congrats, Zombie and Anon 4:37!

Anonymous said...

I'm anon 4:37, and for some reason the job I got called for is not posted on the wiki. As I don't really use it, I haven't added it. I'm in M&E if that helps.

Anonymous said...

The person from "Georgetown" for the Xavier hist. of phil. gig is from Georgetown, Kentucky... not Georgetown University. Don't know what school that would be...

Anonymous said...

I too got a call today, and it showed up on the wiki, Anon 5:36. (I did not post it, someone else did).

As for Xavier and Harvard -- Polacrilex -- two nights ago as I was scrolling through the wiki I clicked on the Xavier entry by mistake and it changed the status to 'interviewed scheduled'. I immediately changed it back (see how the status history shows this?). It is true I live in Cambridge MA though... Oh, speculations!

Anonymous said...

Not to dash anyone's hopes, but...

Wasn't the spring job market of 2009 worse than usual?


Not to raise anyone's hopes, but in that particular way things are likely to be different this year from last. I believe the main reason the Spring crop was so awful was that last year the full awareness of the financial crunch hit university administrations when they'd already authorized Fall searches. Everyone was overextended, so Spring searches were axed even if needed.

That could be wrong, but it fits what I know about my own university (and I know a lot about its finances).

Polacrilex said...

Anon 7:44: lol. My bad. There is a Georgetown College there... perhaps someone who is teaching as an adjunct, VAP, or assistant professor? I'm not really that concerned, but I still think that InfoSniper is a frightening little utility.

Anonymous said...

Just got a PFO from Duke. It began:

"Dear Ms. X,

We regret to inform you ..."

Crazy thing is: I'm a male. Nice job Duke.

Xenophon said...

Not to dash anyone's hopes, but...

Wasn't the spring job market of 2009 worse than usual?


My reasoning is similar to Anon 4:09's. Last year was abnormal from the get-go. In the fall a lot of positions got canceled when the economy hit, and in the spring not only were deans afraid to pull the trigger on anything, plus finances were forcing schools to cut their most cost-efficient instructors (adjuncts and VAPs) because they needed to cut costs without affecting standing faculty. This year we've got a better idea where the economy's heading, and people have had time to cool down and plan how to deal within their current budget.

Plus, courses do need to get taught and most of the schools that don't have caps have record enrollments this year. Ideal situation for hiring adjuncts if you're in a big city, or VAPs in places where there isn't a big pool of un(der)employed PhDs. So a lot of the jobs will probably be in flyover country, but I think they'll be there. (Flyover's not bad for a year or two if your family commitments will allow it.)

Also, I think nearly all the spring jobs will be at private schools, which are better positioned to take advantage of the situation. Particularly those with small endowments that are tuition-dependent and traditionally keep costs low.

Anonymous said...

Anon 7:37, I get the Dear Mr. letters, despite not being male. I don't know why they don't just default to Dear Dr. Even if a candidate is ABD, they won't mind being called Dr., and SCs can avoid the gender confusion. But maybe they don't care that much for the PFOs.

Polacrilex said...

Today I got neither an interview, nor a PFO, but rather an EMAIL ACKNOWLEDGMENT. The APA is in less than two weeks. A little late getting to the applications, huh?

Anonymous said...

I got a PFO from Duke "Dear Mr. X" I am a professor and a female. Thanks for the personalized PFO, Duke.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone heard anything from LSE?

Anonymous said...

LSE had gathered a long-list several weeks ago, and I believe their short-list applicants were invited for campus interviews this week.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone heard anything about the Edinburgh job?

Anonymous said...

The Duke PFOs came by mail or by email? I got nada from them!