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Confessions of a Female Faculty Candidate

7 Jan 2015, 17:00 UTC
Confessions of a Female Faculty Candidate
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

The below is an anonymous guest post submitted by an astronomer on the faculty job market for the first time. I am a woman in her early 30’s in astronomy, and this is my first time applying for faculty jobs. Here’s what I knew beforehand. I knew statistically that I’d be likeliest to “leak” from the research pipeline at this exact juncture: reaching up to barely touch the lowest rung of junior professor. I knew that women falsely identify limitations as lying within when they truly lie without: that Impostor Syndrome is especially rampant among us. And I knew the process would be fraught with rejection. Despite educating myself, I have been grappling with profound feelings of inadequacy that are very gendered. There are statistics of women leaving science at this stage, but a lived experience isn’t fully expressed with statistics: what does it feel like to be a woman grappling with this professional transition with all her might? My mental health provider had to remind me that there is a context for this struggle beyond my own scientific record and the scary academic job market. If I’m feeling this stuff, so are other women. It’s so hard to hang ...

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