Saturday, April 09, 2016

Looking for Dr. Right

I offered to chair a search committee.  We're searching for a one-year appointment in [not really my field] and someone needed to step up and be willing to do the work, and I am.  So there goes.

I know a one-year appointment isn't great.  And our location isn't great.  And the state of politics isn't great.  And we're going to give this person a big load of teaching, too.

But there it is.

[Not really my field] is a fairly small area of study, though, and we're hoping to get someone good for the year, in the way that one hopes for.  So, as chair, I looked up some schools with PhD programs in the area and sent out some emails to grad directors, pointing out the ad, acknowledging that one year isn't ideal, but asking them to let their students know.

I did that yesterday in the late afternoon.  By this morning, I've received a variety of polite to enthusiastic emails from about half the grad directors.  I guess I'd expected silence, maybe, or a curt reply at best, so the general kind tone of the emails is a nice surprise.  Maybe it shouldn't be, because of course the job market for their students is really hard in the way it is for small fields.


We're devastated around here.  Last year, in response to budget cuts, we lost about 15% of our overall paid folks (that includes administrators, support staff, and instructional folks).  This year, the official word last month was that 25 instructional folks are leaving (I think that only includes tenured and tenure-track people, but I'm not sure).  I expect that we haven't heard the last of the departures.  So far, I'm surprised I haven't heard more in Underwater Basketweaving. 

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