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Viva Prep Wallow

Alrighty—I already gave you a summary of my recent explorations in preparing for my viva (mind you 24 days to go aaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhh). I am just about done reading my dissertation from cover to cover. I read Rowena Murray’s book “How to survive your viva” and the tips in there calmed me a little bit BUT there is one issue that still absolutely freaks me out:

During the mock viva one of my supervisors asked me where I want to go next, how I would like to take this research further. I remember owlishly goggling at her because I could not figure out if she actually meant that question seriously and thought: ‘She is not really asking me that, is she? What does she mean by taking this project further? There are no jobs. I should be happy to get a place in a chippy or something.’ Seriously could not figure out what this was about.

Does our parents’ generation seriously not see that there are NO jobs whatsoever and if there are jobs we could apply for, the recently made redundant or early retired experts in our field are a competition we cannot beat? Am I too pessimistic because I read ‘Generation Debt’ and keep getting one rejection letter after the other? Even the postdoc I applied for (by the way really awesome project, very interesting + great work environment ***sigh***) and had been told to have really good chances to get at least into round one, by the ‘supervisor to be’ for the position—I did not even make it to the interview and just spent a week wallowing watching 90ies TV series and reading a handful of fantasy books  [thank you web 2.0, local library & Easter chocolates] and even ran a temperature [I never run temperatures, ever!!!!].

I don’t get it would an examiner really be so mean and dangle a carrot in front of my nose, going: ‘Na nee nee na na’ or singing ‘dreams, wonderful dreams’, wearing a white tux while step dancing—something down the line? When talking to fellow postgrads the doom and gloom picture is not really brightening, unlike The Highlander I am not the only one (didn’t I tell you 90ies TV series).

So what now? I don’t want to think about what I would do in an ideal world, not even for being able to answer the possibly going to be asked question during my viva—what’s the point? Shattered dreams are shards of coloured glass no more no less.

That was the last bit of wallowing I promise, going to set everything in motion and start my own company as soon as the viva is done. Mote it be!

Categories: Teaching

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Nathalie Sheridan

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