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Panel discussion presented by David Scott at the 2010 NSF ADVANCE Workshop: Negotiating the Ideal Faculty Position, A Workshop for Underrepresented PhDs and Postdocs in Science, Engineering and Psychology September 19-21, 2010

You've gotten the phone call


A committee has judged you as a potential good fit.

The interview is your chance to seal the deal.

  • Lots of details arranging a visit.
  • Have a calendar at hand.
  • Being asked to interview first may be a very good sign.
  • If you are fortunate enough to be asked by several institutions to visit, think carefully about conflicts.
  • What if you interview on Jan 8 and get an offer good for two weeks, and your first choice interview is on Feb 12? (You can only say “yes" once.)

What is going on behind the scene?

  • A search committee has selected 3-4 candidates.
  • The entire faculty agrees.
  • The chair calls the candidates and schedules visits.
  • An itinerary is constructed for each candidate.
  • The interview occurs.
  • The chair and search committee re-evaluate the candidates. A recommendation to the department is composed.
  • The department votes to make an offer.
  • The Dean must sign off
  • You get the call.

Start your preparations

Putting together your talk is the most important item. Emilia Morosan will tell you how, in a few minutes.

  • Preparation (and practice) are key.
  • You may meet fifteen or twenty faculty.
  • You may have one-on-one interviews with
    • Department chair
    • Dean of the School
    • Ten senior faculty (and junior faculty)
    • A selection of graduate students
  • Read everything you can about the department.

How should you prepare to meet faculty?

Focus your attention on the Chair and on key faculty in your research area.

  • Read CV's carefully and thoroughly.
  • The conversation will not just be about your thesis research.
  • How will you complement the department's current work?
  • What new area(s) of expertise will you offer?
  • Read several papers by these faculty. You can suggest possible collaborations. You can ask probing questions.
  • Do not be passive or overly deferential. You are not a graduate student, but a faculty candidate!

What should you expect?

  • Some faculty will view their role as educating (“selling") you about the department, the university, and the town.
  • Some faculty will focus on your teaching interests, and curriculum development.
  • Some faculty will probe your understanding of the "big picture." What directions interest you? What do you plan to undertake in the next ten years? (Hard)
  • Some faculty will ask probing questions about your research.
  • Have answers ready! Ask for clarification rather than ramble. It is OK to say “I don't know," or qualify your answer.

Prepare your questions

You do not want to leave after two days uncertain if you would take the job if offered. You should ask about

  • the tenure process
  • teaching expectations (and load)
  • how I will fit in
  • research/publication expectations (which journals?)
  • external funding expectations
  • startup benefits (lab, reduced teaching)
  • would it be OK if I write a large software package

The generational issue

The Beloit College Mindset List for the Class of 2014

Most students entering college for the first time this fall–the Class of 2014–were born in 1992.

For these students, Benny Hill, Sam Kinison, Sam Walton, Bert Parks and Tony Perkins have always been dead.

  • Few in the class know how to write in cursive
  • Email is just too slow, and they seldom if ever use snail mail
  • "Go West, Young College Grad" has always implied "and don't stop until you get to Asia…and learn Chinese along the way."
  • Al Gore has always been animated.
  • Los Angelenos have always been trying to get along.
  • Buffy has always been meeting her obligations to hunt down Lothos and the other blood-suckers at Hemery High.
  • "Caramel macchiato" and "venti half-caf vanilla latte" have always been street corner lingo
  • With increasing numbers of ramps, Braille signs, and handicapped parking spaces, the world has always been trying harder disabilities
  • Had it remained operational, the villainous computer HAL could be their college classmate this fall, but they have a better c folks on Parents' Weekend.
  • Entering college this fall in a country where a quarter of young people under 18 have at least one immigrant parent, they involves "real" aliens from another planet.
  • John McEnroe has never played professional tennis.
  • Clint Eastwood is better known as a sensitive director than as Dirty Harry

Seriously, does it matter?

The interview does not end with interviews and your talk. Conversations at meals/receptions are just as important.

  • You probably have been incredibly busy with your research and writing.
  • You may have given up reading the newspaper or watching TV news.
  • You need a crash course on current events.
  • It is OK not to know which TV series Clint Eastwood was in: Wagon Train , Rawhide , or Gunsmoke .
  • It is not OK to have nothing to offer on current events.
  • Be prepared to engage in a conversation about hobbies/activities you enjoy. The total package.

As the interview ends

  • Typically, you will have a final meeting with the Department Chair
  • “Do you have any last questions?”
  • Don't be disappointed if the signals are ambiguous
  • “We'll be in touch.”
  • It is appropriate to express your appreciation of all the work and time spent on your interview.
  • If someone drives you to the airport, keep the conversation going. “I was very impressed by the questions the graduate students made...”

After the interview

  • A thank you note to the Department Chair is a good idea.
  • If you promised Professor X a copy of your paper, be sure to follow through.
  • (Keep notes. You will be completely exhausted by the end and your memory may blur important details.)
  • Think critically about what you learned during the interview.
  • If during a later interview, you realize you did not cover a particular topic, you can contact the Chair.
  • Or maybe you should wait for “the phone call."
  • Good Luck!

Questions & Answers

find the 15th term of the geometric sequince whose first is 18 and last term of 387
Jerwin Reply
The given of f(x=x-2. then what is the value of this f(3) 5f(x+1)
virgelyn Reply
hmm well what is the answer
how do they get the third part x = (32)5/4
kinnecy Reply
can someone help me with some logarithmic and exponential equations.
Jeffrey Reply
sure. what is your question?
okay, so you have 6 raised to the power of 2. what is that part of your answer
I don't understand what the A with approx sign and the boxed x mean
it think it's written 20/(X-6)^2 so it's 20 divided by X-6 squared
I'm not sure why it wrote it the other way
I got X =-6
ok. so take the square root of both sides, now you have plus or minus the square root of 20= x-6
oops. ignore that.
so you not have an equal sign anywhere in the original equation?
is it a question of log
Commplementary angles
Idrissa Reply
im all ears I need to learn
right! what he said ⤴⤴⤴
what is a good calculator for all algebra; would a Casio fx 260 work with all algebra equations? please name the cheapest, thanks.
Kevin Reply
a perfect square v²+2v+_
Dearan Reply
kkk nice
Abdirahman Reply
algebra 2 Inequalities:If equation 2 = 0 it is an open set?
Kim Reply
or infinite solutions?
The answer is neither. The function, 2 = 0 cannot exist. Hence, the function is undefined.
Embra Reply
if |A| not equal to 0 and order of A is n prove that adj (adj A = |A|
Nancy Reply
rolling four fair dice and getting an even number an all four dice
ramon Reply
Kristine 2*2*2=8
Bridget Reply
Differences Between Laspeyres and Paasche Indices
Emedobi Reply
No. 7x -4y is simplified from 4x + (3y + 3x) -7y
Mary Reply
how do you translate this in Algebraic Expressions
linda Reply
Need to simplify the expresin. 3/7 (x+y)-1/7 (x-1)=
Crystal Reply
. After 3 months on a diet, Lisa had lost 12% of her original weight. She lost 21 pounds. What was Lisa's original weight?
Chris Reply
what's the easiest and fastest way to the synthesize AgNP?
Damian Reply
types of nano material
abeetha Reply
I start with an easy one. carbon nanotubes woven into a long filament like a string
many many of nanotubes
what is the k.e before it land
what is the function of carbon nanotubes?
I'm interested in nanotube
what is nanomaterials​ and their applications of sensors.
Ramkumar Reply
what is nano technology
Sravani Reply
what is system testing?
preparation of nanomaterial
Victor Reply
Yes, Nanotechnology has a very fast field of applications and their is always something new to do with it...
Himanshu Reply
good afternoon madam
what is system testing
what is the application of nanotechnology?
In this morden time nanotechnology used in many field . 1-Electronics-manufacturad IC ,RAM,MRAM,solar panel etc 2-Helth and Medical-Nanomedicine,Drug Dilivery for cancer treatment etc 3- Atomobile -MEMS, Coating on car etc. and may other field for details you can check at Google
anybody can imagine what will be happen after 100 years from now in nano tech world
after 100 year this will be not nanotechnology maybe this technology name will be change . maybe aftet 100 year . we work on electron lable practically about its properties and behaviour by the different instruments
name doesn't matter , whatever it will be change... I'm taking about effect on circumstances of the microscopic world
how hard could it be to apply nanotechnology against viral infections such HIV or Ebola?
silver nanoparticles could handle the job?
not now but maybe in future only AgNP maybe any other nanomaterials
I'm interested in Nanotube
this technology will not going on for the long time , so I'm thinking about femtotechnology 10^-15
can nanotechnology change the direction of the face of the world
Prasenjit Reply
At high concentrations (>0.01 M), the relation between absorptivity coefficient and absorbance is no longer linear. This is due to the electrostatic interactions between the quantum dots in close proximity. If the concentration of the solution is high, another effect that is seen is the scattering of light from the large number of quantum dots. This assumption only works at low concentrations of the analyte. Presence of stray light.
Ali Reply
the Beer law works very well for dilute solutions but fails for very high concentrations. why?
bamidele Reply
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, 2010 nsf advance workshop: negotiating the ideal faculty position. OpenStax CNX. Feb 11, 2011 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11275/1.4
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