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Fear of Failure, Fear of Success

Module by: Rice ADVANCE. E-mail the author

Summary: This presentation is authored by Mikki Hebl, Rice University.

My Background

  • From Pardeeville, Wisconsin
    • Small-town midwesterner
  • Undergrad from Smith College (B.A.)
    • Awareness and respect for gender-related issues
  • Went to Dartmouth College (Ph.D.)
    • Studied stigma and diversity-related issues
  • Been at Rice since 1998
    • Study I/O and Social Psychology, Gender Issues, Stigma, Diversity and Discrimination
  • Work toward Balance
    • Love running marathons, teaching, and my two babies…

http://www.phds.org/

  • Career Information (591)
  • Required Reading (158)
  • Finding Employment (908)
  • The Big Picture (464)
  • Graduate School (573)
  • Postdocs (427)
  • Undergraduate Research (24)

Suggested Reading

Speech: I've tried to be passionate about my career but my career just wants to be good friends.

Psyc 660: Professional Development - “survival skills” are discussed, including the ability to communicate effectively, to find and keep a job, to secure funding, publish, teach, and behave responsibly.

Darley, J. M., Zanna, M. P., & Roediger III, H. L. (2003). The complete academic: A career guide. 2nd edition. Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association.

Found at http://www.apa.org/books/4316014.html

Top Ten Reasons I Love My Job in Academia

  1. I work with intelligent people.
  2. I get to develop and mentor students.
  3. Discovery and the ability to contribute to new knowledge on issues I deem important.
  4. Sharing the passion of my field with others.
  5. The complexity and non-uniformity.
  6. Job security / Autonomy.
  7. Beautiful work environment.
  8. Ability to balance work and family / flexibility.
  9. Vacation times, sabbaticals, summers.
  10. “The Ivory Tower”.

Will you also love academia?

  • What are your fears and concerns about this career?
  • Please indicate on the note cards 2-3 things that you fear about a career in academia.

Potential Fears

  • Getting a Job; Getting the “Right” Job
  • “Publish or Perish” Pressures; Grants
  • Tenure Pressures; Ambiguities
  • New Ideas; Null Effects
  • Balancing Work and Family
  • Deciding if/when to Have Children
  • Tokenism, Discrimination, Lack of Female Role Models

What do women scientists say about fear?

Ellen Swallow Richards (1842-1911)

Ellen Swallow Richards

  • First woman to earn a B.A. in chemistry
  • “They are so afraid we shall break down, and you know the reputation of the college is at stake, for the question is, can girls get a college degree without injuring their health.”

Marie Curie (1867-1934)

  • Polish-French chemist
  • Won Nobel Prize twice
  • “Nothing in life is to be feared. It is only to be understood.”
  • “Life is not easy for any of us. But what of that? We must have perseverance and above all confidence in ourselves. We must believe that we are gifted for something and that this thing must be attained.”

Barbara McClintock (1902-1992)

  • U.S. Scientist
  • Discovered “Jumping genes”
  • Nobel Prize winner ‘83
  • “If you know you are on the right track, if you have this inner knowledge, then nobody can turn you off. . . no matter what they say.”

Grace Murray Hopper (1906-1992)

A young Grace Murray Hopper An elderly Grace Murray Hopper, in uniform

  • U.S. military leader
  • Mathematician
  • Educator
  • Co-inventor of COBOL language
  • Coined the term computer “bug”
  • “A ship in port is safe, but that's not what ships are built for.”

Rosalyn Sussman Yalow (1921 - )

  • U.S. Medical Physicist
  • 2nd woman to win Nobel Prize in Medicine, ‘77
  • “[W]e must believe in ourselves or no one else will believe in us; we must match our aspirations with the competence, courage and determination to succeed.“
  • “The world cannot afford the loss of the talents of half its people if we are to solve the many problems that beset us.”

Maria Mitchell (1818-1889)

  • U.S. Astronomer, Educator
  • Discovered a comet in 1847
  • 1st woman elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences
  • “When we are chafed and fretted by small cares, a look at the stars will show us the littleness of our own interests.”

Rachel Carson (1907-1964)

  • U.S. Biologist
  • “Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.”

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