The truth behind that job advertisement for a lectureship/assistant professorship

Follow @D_Aldridge

Location: Somewhere you don’t want to live
Salary: Nowhere near enough given the ridiculous number of qualifications you have
Contract type: Full-time permanent*
Interview Date: 
Don’t worry, you probably won’t make this stage

 *”Permanent” refers to your expected working hours on campus, NOT your job security, benefits, healthcare etc.

Background

We are seeking a candidate to replace an academic that went senile over 20 years ago, but who has only just retired.

Candidate Evaluation

The candidate must have a PhD from an institution where ivy grows up the sides of old historic buildings and 5-10 years of postdoctoral experience with all the world-experts in their chosen research area. The successful candidate will have published every experiment that they have performed in the last 10-15 years, and some that they did not (only publications in  Science or Nature will be considered valid). The candidate is expected to spend their days teaching undergraduates, and their nights working towards developing a world-class research career – it will obviously be advantageous if the candidate does not have friends, family, hobbies or eyelids. The candidate will have an enthusiasm for teaching**.

**Demonstrating this enthusiasm once you have the job will result in zero career progression and incessant mocking from colleagues.

Holidays

Hahahahahahahaha

Application Process

Enquiries should be directed to our overworked secretary, Mavis; she will probably lose it first time around, so send a second enquiry about 1 week after you submit the first one. When applying, please submit your curriculum vitae – the heavier the better; anything that can be picked up by a single person, or can be read in less than 2 weeks will not be considered.

Interviews

Five lucky candidates, who meet the ridiculous criteria stated above, will be invited to be pummeled (verbally and physically) by a pack of cantankerous academics. Candidates will then be locked in a room together with a single 2×4 coated in barbed-wire. The last one left breathing will be given the job.

Further information:

We aim to be an equal opportunities employer. However, we are not very good at this: white, socially awkward males with excessive facial hair are preferred; females will only be considered if they demonstrate absolutely no desire to start a family.

About these ads
This entry was posted in General Academia, Home, Less Sea-rious and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

27 Responses to The truth behind that job advertisement for a lectureship/assistant professorship

  1. WhatUpWally? says:

    This is hilarious… only because it is too true!

  2. Fantastic! Here via a beloved geologist’s facebook… I’m sad that you don’t have more comments, but I guess that it’s because there isn’t much to say and nobody’s surprised.

    We aim to be an equal opportunities employer. However, we are not very good at this

    Thank you, relevant to my interests!

  3. Myrin says:

    This is fantastic. I don’t even have anything substantial to say, just know that I’m torn between laughing hysterically and being sad and angry and smash-y that this is actually…well, kinda true.

  4. Joost says:

    Thanks! now I know why my academic career didn’t take off: I am male, white and socially awkaward, but then: hardly any facial hair.

  5. G-man says:

    LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. AN Other says:

    Could have mentioned the need for a sycophantic attitude to some, near psychopathic attitude to others, along with a patronising attitude to everybody else….

  7. Adam says:

    I don’t really agree with this description. Location: If you don’t want to live there do not apply, there are other places/career choices. Salary: If you came into science to get qualifications to get rich (although you will more than likely be much better off than majority of the population as a scientist) then one should have realistic expectations and should have done/considered something else. Contract type: Nothing is permenant and a job in a company can potentially be even less stable. Interview date: being optimistic is more likely to result in success.

    I have applied for one lectureship position (no I don’t have a nature, science paper) and was asked to interview and there was no pummelling, I quite enjoyed the interview. I didn’t get it (although actually wasn’t right for me) and it just made me more determined. Unfortunately when it comes to these positions you are up against people who eat, sleep and dream their work. It doesn’t make it right or fair but its called life. You just have to make the best of the opportunties you create or come across and if you are really determined to go somewhere/do something then you will.

    • Karen says:

      Er…..it is a JOKE! Not a real job ad! You do know that don’t you???

    • Bolshoi says:

      Umm.. when you have spent 10+ years studying a subject for which there are NO other career opportunities (in the private sector) and one job at a place to you don’t want to live, your comment on “do not apply” isn’t really applicable. The audience for this piece are academics who work on topics that aren’t immediatly applicable and thus there is no other “career choice” that one can pursue without wasting years of your life. I’m guessing you don’t fit that bill.

    • “Being optimistic is more likely to result in success”?! O, of course. Somehow my good vibes will transfer themselves to the interview panel, whereupon that they will transmutate (or something) into them wanting to hire me, regardless of how good the other candidates are. Whereas if I’m pessimist or cynical but also happen to be the best candidate, I’ll be overlooked because my inherent caution tempered through years of setbacks frightens the interviewers. Thanks, Adam – top tip.

  8. Adam says:

    Although my opinion is most likely to get a bashing as patronising but there you go.

  9. Keith says:

    sooo funny, and tastefully overdone! I just had a fun interview 2 weeks ago that I actually enjoyed. But I am at the bottom of the rung compared to the other candidates (yes, the school posted their seminar list with candidate names). Let’s hope the little bit of facial hair I left on the chin and under the nose helped and that I dazzled them with my shock-and-awe seminar presentation and smashing good looks!

  10. mhhensel says:

    The most well defined pecking orders are alive and well in the educational circles. Will you fit in and will you know your place? :)

  11. John E. Clifford, MA, PhD, Associate Professor Emeritus says:

    Relief to know Academia has not changed in 45 years.

  12. peeters says:

    Adam doesn’t know no pummeling. He pummels himself, and he likes to walk in line too :-) Good luck!

  13. Julien M. short-term contracted in the academic world for a long term says:

    I knew something was wrong! It is the eyelids indeed!

  14. Johann says:

    Adam is an early stage graduate student who has not gone on the market yet, or he goes to a top five school. Yes? Am I right?

  15. Scott says:

    Saw a non-tenure, 3 unit teaching position at a remote junior college offered (compensation $1200 a unit).There were 38!!!! applicants, 7 of which had Phd’s in either the specific or a closely related field. We lowly MA’s had nary a chance!

  16. peeters says:

    @ Johann: hehe… Wie der alte schon gesagt hat: “das Sein bestimmt das Bewusstsein” no?

  17. rethoryke says:

    Eligibility for renewal depends on whether you meet all the above criteria AND are accepted into established faculty cliques, not to mention whether the people on the review committee actually understand/approve of your area of expertise after the panic of institutional re-accreditation is gone.

  18. Pingback: Lottahiller's Blog

  19. Reblogged this on M. A. Granovsky and commented:
    Glad to see that nothing has changed in the decade+ since I left academia

  20. CB says:

    thanks! I may be much more on the side of interdisciplinary arts/humanities but this is just as funny and has just as much truth for my job hunt.

    The one thing you’ve missed is that weird element of luck– how the right person getting up on the right side of the bed on the day they read the applicant documents can send an unexpected candidate to the final round. Luck is definitely involved when there are 700+ applicants to relatively focused postdoc fellowships and 200+ applicants vying for quite specific jobs.

  21. Pingback: A hilarious look into a job advert in science !! | Science Geek

  22. Pingback: Job hunting | Big Red Balloon

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s