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I started out in one of the best PhD programs in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (at an American university) two-years ago. I took my qualifying exams last month, which I could not clear (twice) and will have to leave with a Masters degree instead. I do not have a good relationship with my advisor and was having a hard time coming up with a convincing "story-line" for my thesis, so the outcome is not all that surprising... but I am certainly finding it incredibly difficult to look for non-academic opportunities for myself.

I don't want to try getting into another PhD program because my experience here was incredibly stressful, and took a toll on my mental health. And because I spent the last 8.5 years following my research interests, my profile isn't well suited for industrial jobs either. I do have a knack for coding though, but I don't have necessary experience/ coursework to account for it.

I have been thinking about my options a lot lately, and am hoping to get advice from anyone who has gone through/ seen someone get through a similar situation as mine.

  • If your institution subscribes to it, you may find interesting info at versitilephd.com. You should also consult the career services office in your school or college. – Dawn Mar 5 '18 at 8:11
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    Well what can you do? There's only one option and that is to find a job, right? Use your university's career center if they have one, use your network, use your local job portals. See my answer to a similar question here: academia.stackexchange.com/questions/101858/… – Allure Mar 5 '18 at 8:20
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    I think this question is not really well versed for academia.SE, because it is more of a "What kind of non-academic jobs for a Masters degree holder in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology are there?" Correct me if I am wrong. From a bioinformaticians perspective I have to say though: There are quite a bit of people in your and related fields with a "knack for coding" now, so to make this a competitive feature I would definitely try to get something to account for it. Put up your projects on GitHub, at least. – skymningen Mar 5 '18 at 9:14
  • @Dawn I wasn't aware of that website - while my school doesn't subscribe to it, it does look like a good place to start. – Apro B Mar 6 '18 at 20:49
  • @Allure, Thanks for taking the time. I have set up an appointment with the career centre – Apro B Mar 6 '18 at 20:49