This is BIJTG, a podcast where two black women doctoral students discuss the trials and tribulations that one must go through on the path to putting Dr. in front of their names. Twitter:@BIJTG_podcast Facebook: BIJTGPodcast Email:email@example.com
Coming to you live from Florida with a bottle of red wine, we talk about the angry black women trope and how even though we may have plenty of reasons to be angry, we aren’t. We are passionate about our research and refuse to let others invalidate us. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter @BIJTG_Podcast
We are back with a new episode. Today we are going to talking to you about the PhD interviewing process aka the most important day of your early career. Starting is PhD is hard and finding a lab that can match your research interest and style can be even harder. There are a lot of factors that can determine if a lab group is the best for you and if you will be able to thrive in that culture. All schools /lab groups have problems. It’s up to you to figure out whether which are deal breakers. You ultimately call the shots on where you go.
The path to earning your degree can be a bit bumpy. Alot of it is learning how to advocate for your self so that you have everything you need to succeed. We want to prevent you from getting into a funk. The psychology term for it is "Learned Helplessness" where you don't have the necessary skills/resources to get the work done. Much of our episode centers around Emotional Intelligence and how to use its principles to get through this multiple year journey of getting that degree.
Ya girl, Samniqueka, successfully defended her dissertation but she needed to unpack the interactions that happened over the course of that two hours. From giving suggestions on how to improve papers that have already been published to a handshake that was a little too firm. It took a second to be happy about passing. Ya won’t believe the criticism about publishing before the defense. Not only do we have to work twice as hard, when we do, they still got a problem with it. On a second note, anxiety is real. If someone is trying to talk to you, don’t automatically say “You got this”. Check up on your strong friends and family cause even though they look like they got it together, they may be stressing and trying to tell you and telling them that they got this, ain’t helping.
Lets talk about dipping out. Its December, you might be tired and seriously considering giving up on grad school. And thats okay. But lets talk about it with someone who decided after complete two years of their masters and in the first year of their Ph.D. decided that this just wasn’t for you. We are not advocating for just quitting straight out. We want you to do some reflection to see if this is the best plan for you and show you that you can live your best life outside of grad school.
Today we are going to talk to you guys about the bane of graduate schools existence...writing. When pursuing you graduate degree, you are unknowingly signing a contract to become a writer. In graduate school, writing is the end all be all of your entire career. You have to write a research proposal, grant, fellowship, and a whole ass dissertation before you are finished.
We’re talking about the battle of old school academics and the next generation. They tell use to make our research our own, but then theres that resistance between the so-called “white” way. Minoritized people catch hell for not being “creative enough”, but keep doing you. Its your project, your research and your degree.
Graduate school is hard. Make it easier by setting boundaries. Boundaries are drawing a line in the sand, the difference between saying yes and no. They will let you know who your real friends and family are. Setting boundaries isn’t being petty, its knowing your limits cause people will take as much as they can. Although you may not be able to hang out with family and friends when you want to and do the hustle. Still, do your research and fulfill those professional duties and go home. Have fun, but do what you need to do to make yourself feel good.
For the past two weeks, we’ve been navigating the loss of a beloved advisor. Its been kinda rough and people grieve different. Working till midnight and eating a pint of ice cream most nights. But we not giving up. No worries we both gonna hold this department to their promises for all four of her grad students. This has definitely put things in perspective. Hold your friends and family close and take mini vacations to live your life to the fullest.
We dropping gems today. In your first year of grad school, you are a free agent. Feel out your advisor and bounce if you have to. Your advisors' model should be that your progress is a reflection of them, so they should be trying to support your progress. Regardless, make sure you have multiple mentors in addition to your advisor. Big sis got advice. Always be polite and professional and never take it personal. Be independent and do not rely heavily on your advisor, at the end of the day, their job is to advise. It’s on you to do the rest.
A graduate degree is a unique time where you are essentially both your boss and you employee. You are responsible for setting your own deadlines and ensuring you adhere to them. Cause your advisor will give you plenty of room to fail. We talk about our best experiences with time management and our worse. Of course we got tips. Our key takeaways are to not be afraid to say no and to plan your breaks and your bullshit.
It's the start of the fall semester. Let us introduce ourselves, tell you about our educational journey, why we decided to go to grad school and how we started grad school (ohh, we got some stories to tell ya). Finally, we have tips on how to start your semester off right, both academically and socially)
Get ready for you new favorite podcast, Bitch I'm just tryna graduate, hosted by two black women doctoral students who learned how to survive and thrive in an environment that wasn't built for us, all in the quest to put "Dr." in front of our names. So Subscribe... Come through!