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211 votes

How bad will refusing to defend PhD look on industry-job applications?

No matter how you were mistreated, this plan will make you look extremely toxic. As an employer, I wouldn't go anywhere near someone that would decide to take a personal hit like this purely out of ...
TimRias's user avatar
  • 12.5k
156 votes
Accepted

I'm feeling discouraged after getting tenure; should I quit?

Many faculty get post-tenure blues. There are several causes: Burnout: You've been running at full speed for almost 30 years (k-12; college; grad school; post-docs; tenure track). Your brain needs a ...
RoboKaren's user avatar
  • 40.4k
135 votes

How bad will refusing to defend PhD look on industry-job applications?

You Will Burn Yourself To The Ground I can speak directly from the perspective of industry: If you go into a job interview and tell them, "I could finish the PhD any time I want to, but I choose ...
Anonymous's user avatar
  • 4,138
100 votes

How bad will refusing to defend PhD look on industry-job applications?

Why would a company want to hire you if they know anything about the circumstances? You've spent time working toward a doctorate and failed to earn it. You've demonstrated vindictiveness toward ...
Buffy's user avatar
  • 367k
86 votes

Fifth year of my PhD and I hate my project. What should I do?

DISCLAIMER I serve as a mental health 1st aid officer at my school. I received basic mental health training but I AM NOT A PSYCHOLOGIST. During this role, I have assisted many PhD students going ...
Mo Hossny's user avatar
  • 761
78 votes

How bad will refusing to defend PhD look on industry-job applications?

In addition to the other reasons why this is a bad idea, it wouldn’t even work. Your department is used to people starting a PhD and then not graduating, so they wouldn’t really care that much about ...
Dan Romik's user avatar
  • 191k
69 votes
Accepted

Should I let my former undergraduate advisor know that my PhD advisor was abusive?

I'm sorry to hear about your experience, that sounds very distressing. From what you've posted, it looks as if your undergrad advisor is sympathetic and thinks well of you. That being the case, you ...
G_B's user avatar
  • 10.3k
68 votes

Ethics of staying in PhD program with no intention of being an academic, and misleading my advisor about this

As a PhD student, you don't have to want an academic career. It's not unethical to pursue a PhD with no intention of staying in academia afterward. But lying about your plans and deliberately ...
ff524's user avatar
  • 109k
65 votes

U.S. humanities professors: Can you get back into academia if you leave?

Speaking as humanistic social scientist at an R1 (but who has also taught at small liberal arts colleges), I would say it would be next to impossible. There is an absolute surfeit of stellar recent ...
RoboKaren's user avatar
  • 40.4k
63 votes

Just started a postdoc, but it went REALLY bad, REALLY fast. Stay or go?

With all else the same, given an choice between staying in a bad situation that cannot be resolved or leaving it, the decision is easy. Of course, all is never exactly the same. When the balance is ...
Jeffrey J Weimer's user avatar
61 votes

How do I know that I have truly lost interest in research and should drop out of a top CS PhD program?

If available, I would immediately seek out the university counseling services (as mentioned in a comment by @Nate Eldredge ) The things you are mentioning could be symptoms of depression. Or, you may ...
Dawn's user avatar
  • 16.8k
61 votes
Accepted

How to get lab resources back from a post-doc who resigned while on vacation and not coming back?

The issues you are describing of misappropriation of university equipment, research data and unearned salary, rise to a level of seriousness that a rank and file faculty member is not equipped to deal ...
Dan Romik's user avatar
  • 191k
60 votes

I got an offer from my dream graduate school days after starting grad school somewhere else. What should I do?

To be honest, you will not be spared the moral decision. There will be a number of angry and/or unhappy people if you leave, there is no way around that. The core question is: do you know the other ...
Captain Emacs's user avatar
58 votes

Cannot attend CS conference but coauthor isn't registering

Another possibility is that your "non-academic employment" obviously values your skills - have you considered asking them if they will give you leave (paid or unpaid) to let you present - and it has ...
Solar Mike's user avatar
  • 28.1k
57 votes

PhD and postdoc with no first author publications- realistically what are my career prospects?

Are you intending to stay in academia? You stated in your question that you've always wanted to be a "researcher"... you should be aware that there are many industry positions with similar duties and ...
eykanal's user avatar
  • 48.5k
52 votes

Should I let my former undergraduate advisor know that my PhD advisor was abusive?

Yes. Abusive persons in positions of authority are a huge problem in academia. A major reason for the continued existence of this problem is the fact that it’s often swept under the carpet and hushed ...
Konrad Rudolph's user avatar
52 votes

Should I quit my PhD after 4 months?

No one here should tell you whether to quit or not. But you need to find a changed situation somehow. Some suggestions... Talk to your supervisor about the situation with your project and see whether ...
Buffy's user avatar
  • 367k
51 votes

PhD and postdoc with no first author publications- realistically what are my career prospects?

The answers here so far are all encouraging and supportive, which is nice, but realistically and bluntly not having first-author publications after a Ph.D. and a postdoc is a bad place to be if you're ...
iayork's user avatar
  • 13.4k
49 votes

I'm feeling discouraged after getting tenure; should I quit?

It's hard to give concrete advice here because this is a very personal thing. First: It is quite common to feel empty when such a major goal have been achieved and probably you are left with no ...
Dirk's user avatar
  • 38.4k
49 votes

What advantages do professors have over equivalent industry and government researchers?

You get to be your own boss and you get to choose what you work on. Not a bad racket… not bad at all. To expand a bit, I am tenured. I could do nothing or not much but I would find this depressing. ...
ZeroTheHero's user avatar
  • 27.3k
49 votes

How bad will refusing to defend PhD look on industry-job applications?

I think this is a straightforward question. If you don't defend the PhD but don't disclose the true vindictive reasons why you hadn't, it may slightly lower your chances as you would be a less ...
Dilworth's user avatar
  • 13.3k
48 votes

Struggling with PhD in Switzerland: should I transfer to a more favorable climate?

I do not mean to minimize the challenges you report, but I do not think cold weather in itself is sufficient reason to rearrange your plans. Three suggestions. Consider practical solutions. Do you ...
cag51's user avatar
  • 69.6k
45 votes

How do I cut ties with a bad supervisor?

You have handed in your thesis, which is very good and a very reasonable point to stop working with your supervisor, especially if she's not paying you anymore. At this point, it is only the thesis ...
silvado's user avatar
  • 18.8k
44 votes

How to quit/put on hold a PhD program due to personality clash with advisor?

Five publications? Good God, you deserve a PhD more than me and anybody else I have known. FábioDias is absolutely right. I know of an identical case where the advisor wanted the student to do more ...
Fixed Point's user avatar
  • 1,490
44 votes

Just started a postdoc, but it went REALLY bad, REALLY fast. Stay or go?

You, and only you, are responsible for your own happiness. If you don't leave, you'll be miserable for 2 years. A poor postdoc now might also damage your future career, although probably not fatally. ...
Allure's user avatar
  • 131k
43 votes

Quit a PhD for another PhD

Quitting a PhD because you realise afterwards that it's not the right path for you is fine. A fellow student during my PhD did so (due to homesickness, primarily), and immediately started a PhD at a ...
Chris H's user avatar
  • 517
42 votes

As a supervisor, what feedback would you expect from a PhD who quits?

In general, I feel the two items you list already (over-)fulfill what justification you strictly speaking owe an advisor on your way out. You lost interest in your research subject, and you are ...
xLeitix's user avatar
  • 135k
41 votes

Guilt about quitting PhD as first student of the lab

While it might have a negative impact on your supervisor, it also might not have a negative impact if you handle it properly! And it will definitively have a negative impact on your career if you do ...
Jeroen's user avatar
  • 8,166
40 votes
Accepted

Will one with record of unfinished PhD on his/her CV be doubted of his/her ability?

does a record of an unfinished PhD program makes employers doubt a person's ability? I very much wish it were not so, but the honest answer is yes. Employers, within the restricted context of ...
Dan Romik's user avatar
  • 191k
40 votes

How bad will refusing to defend PhD look on industry-job applications?

It might give the impression that you are fast-reacting and that you struggle with conflict resolution. All over academia, people put up with deficient supervisors, bad projects, etc. still end up ...
SebDL's user avatar
  • 876

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