I am a PhD student from a small and relatively-new private university that was set up overseas. The main home campus might be quite well known. My supervisor 'left' the university 4 months ago, but he has been helping me all the way until I submitted my PhD thesis. I submitted my PhD thesis 2 months ago, but my Graduate School insists that I should find new supervisor or they will not arrange my viva. They also do not make things clear in writing, but wish to meet me instead. I did not agree to meet as I am concerned about threats to me and behaviours that breach policy and standard and conditions that they do not want to put into writing so I cannot use as legal evidences. Instead, I have discussed everything in writing.
I cannot agree to find new supervisor for the following reasons.
1) I already finished all my PhD work and submitted the thesis and therefore would not expect the need for any new supervisor who does not know about me or my work. It is like I submitted my exam paper, and expect it to be marked, no matter if any problems occurred in the school.
2) I have done a lot of novel and important research and technical work so far which I would like to exploit further commercially and academically and do not want the involvement of others newly coming into the scene to stifle, limit or conflict with me.
3) The supervisors that were proposed or allocated to me are not in the area of my work (although the School insists that they are).
I would like to pursue job opportunities that require my graduation certificate as quickly as possible. However, I feels that the Graduate School is collaborating with the Faculty to coerce me into compromising my interests that could have been supported according to the Quality manual.
I am now very emotionally distressed. I see no logic in the School authorities bullying me into conditions that are against my interests, and are holding hostage my viva opportunity. I already had several email exchanges with the School authorities but they still have refused to allow me to proceed to viva without agreeing to a change of supervisor.
On the side, the Graduate School had also forwarded my thesis to some faculty members even when they have not sent it to my examiners, despite my application for thesis confidentiality.
The faculty representative for postgraduate students had also accused me of allegations of the Head of School who they want to allocate as my supervisor but I refused and explained the reasons why (he said these reasons are allegations). He cc'd his email to me to the Head of School and other School authorities, even when the school said that we can discuss with this representative confidentiality. His breach of confidentiality also makes me concerned about retaliation from the school authorities.
I did have a co-supervisor who should be able to deal with being my supervisor, but it seems that the co-supervisor withdrew from being available after the Head of School discussed with the co-supervisor. Now I am asked to find a new supervisor which is a problem created by the School for me.
What can I do? I am self funding while they are holiding up my viva. I am also trying to do some jobs to make ends me for me and my family. I am really struggling to defend my rights and interests in this university, and I appreciate any comments you may have. I have been writing to the home campus to ask for help, but they keep pushing back the school's problems to my campus.
Dear all, thank you for the comments. I have attended a video meeting. Instead of resolving the problems the faculty representative criticised me for poor communication with the second supervisor. Instead of accepting responsibility they tried to push the responsibility to me. It was like a heated conversation. They also called me on the phone to ask me to change supervision team and later when they wrote email to me to follow up they deliberately did not state this. Instead they wrote in email not consistent with the phone call that my viva will be arranged with the examiners selected and if there is any conflict of interest with the examiners I should submit evidences. However, that was two weeks ago and now there is still no news about the examiner arrangement! I wonder as the English is not their native language they will claim misunderstanding.