To go along with the “how many grad students” question from the last post, there is a discussion on FSP’s blog about Bad Advisors (BAs). I hope that I am not a BA. I hope that just being aware that there is such a thing as good and bad advising is half the struggle to avoiding the BA label. I might be an unintentionally bad advisor (UBA) for some of my students. I don’t know. I try to err on the side of over-advising, sometimes at the expense of my own first-author publication production. This summer has not been good for paper writing, but I have been helping others get out papers and proposals. I did get to code for a while this summer, and that was fun. I don’t think I could do this with 10+ PhD students at once, or even 5 grad students. I would have no time for myself and my own pursuits. I think that I would be in constant manager mode and wouldn’t get to actually do any science directly. It would all be vicariously through my employees. That’s not what I want to do, though. I am still very interested in coding and making plots and spending time with a problem, and I don’t want to simply be one who gets the money for others to able to do these things. So, I will not grow my group too fast. For one, that takes a lot of money, but for another, I want to be able to (very slowly) transition into the permanent manager position. I am pretty happy with the state of things right now, although I would have liked to have had more time this summer to write a paper or two. But, I do not regret my time advising others. This is productive time for me, just in a different direction, and I am not bitter about it. Just a little nostalgic for the days when I did everything myself. No, not really.
Ode to Bureaucracy
3 years ago