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Job Application and SO


Re: Job Application and SO

  • Eh, academia is a beast unto itself. Trying to explain it to other people is fruitless. You may want to post on The Chronicle's forums instead.
  • image amanjay:
    The OP is correct---it's definitely how it works in some fields, though I'm sure not all.

    Seriously?  A college will create a whole new class/program just to accomodate the specialty of the spouse of someone they'd like to hire?

    If that's really true (which I have a hard time believing), I'm suddenly even more skeptical/disillusioned by Higher Education.  To think that the classes that were offered to me were chosen on such stupid criteria makes me laugh.  And puke when I think of the $$$$ I spent on them.

    Regardless of whether this college will create a whole new program JUST for OP's boyfriend - using a job as the reason to get married just seems like an awful idea. 

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  • My husband and I are academics as well, so I really sympathize with the "two body problem." Like PP, I would also highly recommend the chronicle forums. I think people outside of academia have a hard time understanding the amount of personal sacrifices that being a prof demands.

    That said, I've been told by my own mentors that spousal hire should generally not be brought up until you've been offered a job. If this is the case, then you could probably just apply for the job, and then deal with the marriage question if you get offered it. If you do get the job, I don't think that it is unreasonable to get married if you're going to make your SO move to another state and switch careers. My husband and I got engaged when he switched grad schools so we could live in the same city, and I have a number of friends and colleagues with similar stories.

    I do think the one thing to keep in mind is that not all colleges have great spousal hire programs. Are you sure the school you're applying to would even be ammenable to it?

  • Maybride- yep, that's how it works in my field at least. For the most part, the academic couples I know are "power couples" in that highly qualified partners are chosing highly qualified partners so it's not like schools are hiring degenerates just to get their spouses to work there. That said, departments do a number of things to help ensure quality. For example, one of the "less qualified" spouses was hired as an adjunct on 1-year renewable contracts (not tenure track). Departments also don't have to approve spousal hires if they don't want to.

    For what it's worth, if you went to a Research 1 school, you should be disillusioned about the profs. you had anyway in terms of teaching. While some are clearly excellent teachers who love what they do, most don't actually like to teach---they were hired to do research and are required to teach a few classes. I was actually told at one place I interviewed that, it's nice that I like to teach, but that it'll just get in the way so I should try to get research grants to buy out of my teaching load. Needless to say, I did not decide to work at a research 1 school since, while I like to research, teaching is more important to me.

  • amanjay - yeah, I know all about that crap, and it accounts for a large part of my bitterness towards my alma mater.  I had more TAs than I did actual profs.  Ridiculous.
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  • I'm on the instructional development committee, so one of my jobs is to evaluate TAs, lecturers, and professors. Trust me; in many cases you probably got a better education from TAs. Around here at least, they tend to assign better quality (and more rigorous) assignments, update their curriculum more frequently, and receive more training on new teaching techniques. Professors just don't have time to do those things.
  • There is even a board on the Chronicle of Higher Education's forum dedicated to "the two body problem" - dual academic couples.  The discussions revolve largely around getting jobs for both people in a couple, often resulting in spousal hires. 
  • FWIW ... I dated and was engaged to my DH for our entire relationship.  We moved to the home we now share one month before the wedding.

    So having a year together before you accept an out-of-town employment sounds like a luxurty to me.You can and should seek your employment options and then let your relationship evolve.

    Its been 5 minutes since you've seen this incredibly competative job posting. Consentrate on the job.  Don't start thinking about some shot gun wedding to get him a job, too.

    Date long-distance if you want to.  It's a very good option.   

    My darling daughter just turned 4 years old.
  • I will NOT do long distance ever again.  Especially in this situation, when there would not be an end-date to the distance and almost no chance we'd just "happen" to land jobs in the same area ever again under those circumstances.  I know, I know, everyone will say he should "look", but trust me, there is NOTHING to look for.  Nothing.  It's also an unrealistic view of your relationship since you only see each other in these small snippets of fun and not your day to day life.  No long distance.  Life is too short to have your relationship be that hard.  We will be together, in the same place.
  • I respectfully disagree.

    And why did you ask for advice if you are so totally convinced of your position? 

    My darling daughter just turned 4 years old.
  • I wouldn't have a problem with, say, me leaving and being L-D IF he could get a job there soon after, even a year or so after.  But, as stated earlier, there are NO jobs for him to look for in that specific location.  The problem I'd have with long distance in OUR situation is that there would be no end date to it.  How can one live that way?  The only way there would be an end if we were in that situation is if one of us quit our job, gave it up, and moved to be with the other person... not a viable option for us.  So, while it may work for some people, and it wouldn't be too horrible if there was an end date, in our particular situation there wouldn't be one.  Who would want to live like that forever???  So while that may work for others, and I could see how it would, this type of situation couldn't work for us - see postings above about how the profession works...
  • My husband is an academic, and we know a few academic marrieds - I feel your pain.

    That said, I think you are jumping the gun. First, talk to your boyfriend about job applications and this one in particular. He knows the drill, if the two of you haven't discussed this in depth now is the time. Second, apply for the job. You are already trying to problem solve as if the job is yours.... it isn't! Take a deep breath and deal with one problem at a time. For you, that means focusing on the job search and discussing alternatives involving relocation with your boyfriend.

    From your post, I get the impression that you do want to be married and want to push that point with him - the job posting is an opportunity that makes it look like the idea isn't coming from you. It's fine to feel that way (I felt that way), but I would stop hiding behind the job and figure out another way to handle it.

  • p.s. Most academic couples I know have a "best job wins" agreement when it comes to relocation. This would also be a good time to discuss child rearing - seriously.
  • image Maybride2:
    image nikki0814:


    In college professor jobs (what he does) they DO create a position in his field, not shove him in a field/position he isn't qualified for. 

    Of course they do.  A college is going to create a whole new job - heck, even a whole new department! - to accommodate a spousal placement program.  Of course that's how colleges decide which classes/programs they'll offer - it's all based on what the spouses of their professors do!

    You're an idiot. 

    Creating a new department line for a spousal hire is very common in academia, especially in locations with limited opportunities.

    We hired an outstanding psychology professor. Part of her contract is that they would create an assistant professorship in the Chem Eng. department. There was no opening. They just made a new line for him.

    Happens a lot.

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