Post Academic

Full disclosure: I got a job!

Posted in First Person by Arnold Pan on July 6, 2010
Tags: ,

Since this blog is about how Ph.D.-types might seek out different professional possibilities, whether it’s dealing with the frustrations of trying to get on the tenure track or finding something that might be better suited to you than the initial path on which you started, I figure that it’s not too much of a self-indulgence  to let y’all know that I started my first post-Ph.D. job last week!  While I’m gonna be as discreet as possible about the actual job itself, I wanted to let you readers–especially the long-time, old-school followers–know about it, in case anyone’s actually following my mini-saga and if for no other reason than to let folks who might be in similar situations know that it’s possible to find work that’s fulfilling, despite the hardships and obstacles of finding academic work (or really any kind of employment these days).  This isn’t to say that the advice I’ve given about how to seek out and find a job necessarily works like magic, although I would say that you should listen to Caroline, because I did and it helped me out immeasurably.

Enough with the preamble already.  Here’s the dish on the job: I’m working as the Assistant Editor of Amerasia Journal based at UCLA.  I call it my first “post-Ph.D. job” because it’s, of course, not post-academic at all, since I’m using pretty much all the skills I attained while earning my doctorate and I’m working for an academic institution.  It’ll also be an opportunity to learn about academic publishing from the inside, which should be quite an education for me.

Since academic publishing has been one of the topics that Post Academic readers are most interested in, I thought this might also be an opportunity to get some input from people reading this on what possible innovations–online or otherwise–you’d like to see to supplement traditional print media.  If you have particular suggestions, sites/journals you think are good examples of the genre, and/or other interesting online publication formats you’ve seen, please pass them along to me and to the other followers of the blog, because I imagine folks might be intrigued in seeing what’s happening right now in publishing.

Anyway, I wanted to pass along my good news to the followers of Post Academic and to also thank you for helping me get to this point.  Without starting the blog, working on it, and interacting with you, I don’t think I’d be in this position.  To our regular readers,  Caroline and I will still be posting on the blog regularly, gearing up for the fall as well as coming up with (hopefully) some fun surprises until then.

Now it’s time for me to jump in off the computer and into my car to get on the 405!  Thanks, everyone!

5 Responses to 'Full disclosure: I got a job!'

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  1. Len said,

    Hooray! Congratulations on the superb news! Get yourself some entertaining audiobooks for that 405 commute.

    I’ve found that Wiley-Blackwell’s Literature Compass is doing a good job of rethinking the publication model by publishing everything online but in nice-looking PDFs. They sell both subscriptions and individual articles (unlike most academic journals). Most interesting perhaps is the way that they cross-reference articles so that readers of one article will have several others recommended to them for further reading. I don’t think the recs are done by the authors; maybe by the editors or some kind of internal search engine.

    Here’s the link:

    The editor there, Kimvars Bowling, is doing a good job with web development of academic journals. He hosts panels on the topic, and I think he’s posted some of the videos of the discussions online.

  2. Mackie Blanton said,

    Regarding your request, Len’s news about web development at Wiley Publishing is excellent information. Thank you, Len.

    You, Arnold, may think you have already done so here before, but what I would like to see you discuss intermittently is what you yourself bring to your new job and tell us what courses and experiences you accrued along the way to prepare you for being the right person for your new Assistant Editorship. When I ask for information of this sort, I am never asking for myself; I am asking for students, especially undergraduates. So I want a certain kind of personal information from you that I can take back to my students by sharing your blogs with them.

    As I am sure you have noticed, many English literature majors, for example, do not realize until their senior year how important a course in Advanced Writing, Technical & Scientific Writing, and Professional Editing & Writing could have been for them several semesters ago. Once I realized this about them, I began to encourage Freshmen to think ahead about such courses, including a heavy dose of computer science courses, no matter what their major is. I never stop reminding them as I run into them across campus year after year. So it would be great to have a wider sense from you of what’s up ahead for our students by being able to look back at what you brought forward in your wake.

    • Thank you for spreading the word that English Literature and computer science courses are a powerful mix!

      Plus, even though people sniff at Physics for Poets and the like, a few science courses can do wonders for the logic presented in papers. Even if a student doesn’t plan on going into science or computers for the long haul, a little scientific method goes a long way.

  3. Gina Hiatt said,

    Congratulations! That sounds like a fascinating job. I did my post-doc at UCLA (clinical psychology, funded by the Brain Research Institute), taught Introductory Psych and Abnormal Psych there also. I think it’s a great place to work. I love success stories that show that Ph.D.’s can get jobs that are challenging and exciting. Yay!

  4. Arnold Pan said,

    Thanks for the kind messages, all! Mackey, maybe I’ll post something about how I approached the process of applying for the position. I don’t want to be presumptuous by hypothesizing as to why I was hired, but I’ll try to explain some of the steps I used going into the process. I’ll think about this a bit and get back to you!

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