Post Academic


Statement of Purpose

What do people outside of academia actually do?  What do people inside academia actually do?  What do people in other fields within academia do?  What can academics do outside of academia?  And why is it so hard to explain how academia works to people who aren’t in it?  We hope that Post Academic can start to answer or at least think about these questions and more – with your help.

Chances are that you know either  Arnold Pan or Caroline Roberts or both of us if you are reading this.  We started this blog to address issues that we ourselves, close friends, acquaintances, and colleagues have encountered in varying ways, as well as to keep our minds and writing skills sharp.   Beyond offering the standard features of blogs, such as post aggregation, useful links, and first-person screeds, we’re aiming to help people – starting with ourselves – figure out how to use and adapt skills to do things for which they might not have been initially intended.  To achieve this goal, we welcome and seek out all sorts of audience participation, such as your advice, your input, and your stories.  We hope that the blog will be interesting and relevant to all sorts, whether you’re actively making a transition, looking to see what options are out there, admirably persistent in pursuing what you want to do, or just curious.

Here are some of the subjects we plan to cover on the blog, conveniently listed under the “Categories” heading in the right column:

* Process Stories: We want to be hands-on in understanding the process of getting a job, any job, academic or non-academic.  What is the process in different fields and professions?  What is the process of transitioning from one profession to another, whether willingly or unwillingly?

* Transfer Your Skills: We’ll explore practical ways the skills we gained as underpaid, overeducated academics might translate to other professions.

* The Education Industry: We will track relevant news and topics regarding the rapidly changing state of education.  We might be (becoming) post-academic, but, without academia, we’d just be “post.”

* First Person: Tell us your stories, whether you’re a post-academic or a not-academic or a marginal academic or an aspiring academic or a happily employed academic.  We’re hoping that our various experiences can help folks brainstorm, identify, and commiserate with one another.  We might all be statistics, but we have good narratives too.

* Absurdities: We’re not above a little snark and pointing out the ridiculous in a smart-alecky way, which would be funnier if it hadn’t happened to us and the people we know.

Thanks for reading this far and let us know what you think/what you want to see on here.  Feel free to participate as anonymously or fully identifiably as you’d like.

4 Responses to 'Statement of Purpose'

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  1. Gina Hiatt said,

    I love this concept! I’ve enjoyed your tweets so far and I will enjoy reading this blog. This is filling a sorely needed gap for academics. I’m going to write about you on my blog, once I’m done procrastinating. :)


    • Thank you so much! I hope we can help out a little. I also just checked out Academic Ladder, and I definitely want to read more. Good luck with overcoming the procrastination–I know how that feels!

  2. Gina Hiatt said,

    Hi Caroline,

    I’d love to give you a tour of the Academic Writing Club, or even a free one-month membership if it fits your needs, because I think you’ll be impressed with how it fits the needs of many academics, from grad students suck on their dissertation writing to profs with post-tenure ennui.
    Please write me at gina [at] academicladder[dot]com.


  3. Hi Caroline and Arnold,

    Thanks for featuring my blog. I’m glad there are more people trying to explain academia to the outside world, and writing to academics from outside the ivory tower!


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