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Talk Written.

23 November 2012

I have completed my Job Talk. The fundamental thing I keep hearing about writing them is: tell a story. Given that the position I’m interviewing for is not a strictly academic position, the standard rules for an academic job talks don’t exactly apply. They are not interested in what I plan to write my next grant for, or my ideas for pushing back the frontiers of human knowledge. What they’ll want to know is: what have you done in the past that resulted in real world improvement, and how can you apply that to PECMC? So I’ve written a talk along those lines, but with a bit of academic theory and a short nod at a literature review in the beginning. Then I describe my past and ongoing efforts, and highlight what I think of as my biggest career accomplishment: the use of simulation to accurately predict the consequences of a proposed change and dramatically improve service in my institution’s emergency department.

Hopefully, they will see that my skills are relevant and useful, and potentially lucrative. And of course, I’m willing to write grants to supplement part of my salary as well. In fact, I’d prefer it. But maybe not right away. I’d like to take a year off from putting grants together. I’m nearing the end of the big one I’m writing now. I have about 2 weeks left to get it in. It’ll get done. But it’s not going to be nearly as good as it could have been, because I’ve put so much effort into my job search. A job search which is, I hope, paying off. Though I’ve not heard anything positive from any of the two dozen or so universities I applied to. Two rejections and a whole lot of silence.

I have found that as long as anything is going well, as long as I have one good thing on the horizon to look forward to, I can tolerate a lot of rejection. Right now, I’m ok about being rejected for those other jobs because there’s a job I’m very excited about that I feel like I have a very good chance at. I know what to expect, mostly, when I go out there. I know how to give a good talk. I am confident, and I will be present and engaged. I feel like I have a strong talk for the sort of position they’re looking to fill. I’m good at this, and I’m ready for a new challenge.

It is really hard not to count these chickens. I feel very good about this opportunity. But until I actually receive an offer, I’m still a researcher where I am, in need of a grant-hit. So I’m back to writing. Hoping. Doing what we have decided researchers in the western world should spend their time doing: begging for money, rather than researching.


One Comment leave one →
  1. Syd permalink
    25 November 2012 08:00

    I’m happy that you have been invited to give a seminar. Good luck with it all.

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