Kathryn W. Tosney

Professor of Biology
The University of Miami



    Kathryn Tosney
    1301 Memorial Drive
    Cox Science Center, 229D
    The University of Miami
    Coral Gables, FL 33146
    Office (305) 284-2673
    FAX (305) 284-3039

IN ACADEMIA: a lecture

This talk is one I have given at National meetings and at various Universities
by invitation, often by graduate student or postdoctoral associations.

    This one-hour talk reveals one survivor's perspective on a scientific career in Academia. I examine career structure from graduate school through tenure and discuss how the demands, expectations and rewards evolve as you progress through each phase. Your goal is to become an independent, respected investigator--and, of course, to win the grant funds and tenure that let you continue your independent, respected investigations. It should then come as no surprise that criteria for tenure are designed to assess excellence in just these qualities: independence, reputation, and research. But in practice, the criteria may appear opaque, arbitrary, or realistic only in sad retrospect. For instance, it is possible to both publish AND perish. The good news is that you can make sense of your system. This talk explores how--and why--one academic system works. The information revealed is not designed to serve as the first and only truth; instead it should form a baseline, to stimulate you to learn how your own system works.