How much celebration for submitting?


What is the appropriate level of celebration after one has submitted one's PhD as opposed to actually passing it? I have struggled through over the past five and a half years and will be submitting at the end of July. It won't be perfect (!) but I will have done it and I am intending to celebrate as I think I deserve it. I am planning champagne with work colleagues, uni colleagues, friends down the pub, and a luxury weekend away. When (if) i do finally pass it will have to be even more champagne and probably a big party.
What had anyone else done in the way of celebrations?


Congratulations for submitting (or almost submitting at the moment!). My view is that you should celebrate as much as you and your friends/family fancy.

I think the kind of celebration you described would be at the more extravagant end of the scale (at my department when someone submits they get a pat on the back and then we go out for a few drinks in the evening - we would then have a bigger celebration when they pass the viva).


Congrats Pam, you deserve to celebrate as much as you like! It was a bit difficult for me to celebrate submission as my viva was just 6 days later, but certainly you need a good rest and some chillout time before you start getting into viva prep! When I passed my viva I went out on the town with my mates, but to be honest I was knackered lol! I just wanted a damn good rest! Well done :) KB


It's a very personal thing, but in my case I felt more numb than anything else after submitting. Certainly not feeling like a big celebration. I might have bought a small bottle of wine and a cake for dinner that night. But I didn't think any bigger celebration was merited. In my case big celebrations waited until after the viva was passed successfully, 6 weeks later.

I did my part-time PhD over a 6 year period too, submitting just within the period permitted by my university for part-timers without asking for an extension. And it was a real struggle, with a progressive MS-like illness causing worsening brain damage and disability. But I still felt numb around submission, and didn't think I was over by any means.


I'm beginning to think I might be going over the top a bit, but I never thought I would get to this point.
I may decide that a week in bed catching up on sleep is better than going out! But I am mainly looking forward to a weekend away without the pressure of the thesis hanging over me.
I suppose you never know how you are going to feel until you get there.


======= Date Modified 10 Jun 2012 22:08:05 =======
The day I submitted I met me friend, who also submitted that day, in the pub. Had a few drinks at the Uni bar, then went to twon for a few more drinks with friends. At my Uni it's quite normal to have a few drinks on submission day, but to have the champagne on viva day.

Congratulations on the submission too :-)


Congratulations to you, PamW - the end is in sight! If anything, make sure you take some time to relax - that's what I did when I submitted my PhD. Perhaps go for a few drinks with some close friends or even a night on the tiles. Wrt to it not being perfect, neither was mine. I'll bet that's the same for most people. In fact, this is what I had as an introduction page on my thesis, and it is so true:

‘Research is the messy business in which many things
go wrong; nothing is predictable and ends up usually
in a different place to that expected.’

You're nearly there, PamW!


I'm planning on coming home, taking a bottle of wine out in the garden (it'd better be a nice day :-)) and a pile of magazines and then just chilling out, I might even buy a bar of chocolate (been on a diet since Feb) to really push the boat out. I think I'll need to just sit and absorb what's happened lol. I think the thing with submission is that you end up back in limbo until the viva. I hope to do the champagne thing then - but I'll also be scared that something goes wrong.... eek! I personally find it quite distressing that they don't have party poppers, a bottle of bubbly at a banner ready in Registry for PhD submissions! 8-)

Avatar for Mackem_Beefy

======= Date Modified 20 Jun 2012 16:28:22 =======
I submitted just before Christmas. However, I decided not to celebrate until after viva, which was 2.5 months away when it finally happened. And yes, the lead up to viva was a no man's land.

The plan was to basically get alcoholically hammered if I passed with no more than minor corrections. However, my immediate colleagues were away on the day of the viva (conference in Poland plus other leave) so that didn't materialise. However, I know how football obsessed I can be and there was a Sunderland home match (season ticket holder) on the evening of the viva (so the piss up wouldn't have happened on the same day anyway). As I said elsewhere on here, I'd just emerged from a side room where I'd got out of my suit and into my jeans and Sunderland replica top literally minutes after my viva, just to bump into my supervisor and external examiner who were having an unrelated meeting.

My external scratched her head. "He's a Sunderland supporter." responds my supervisor. "Sorry, I've a match to get to, I have to go." I replied. Her eyes just went skyward.

I'll add a coat covered up my Sunderland top as I headed THROUGH THE STREETS OF NEWCASTLE to get the Metro to Sunderland and the match.

Ian (Mackem_Beefy)

Avatar for Pootle

Hmm ... since the story ends at the turnstiles, can we assume that you ended up celebrating the viva result rather than the Sunderland one? ;-)

Avatar for Mackem_Beefy

Quote From Pootle:

Hmm ... since the story ends at the turnstiles, can we assume that you ended up celebrating the viva result rather than the Sunderland one? ;-)

A Sunderland win would have finished the day off nicely.

But no!!! I finished the day being denied three sraightforward points by a referee by the name of Mark Prosser. He sent one of our players off and we played most of the game with 10 men. We had to settle for a 3-3 draw so that was foremost in my mind, so much so I had a rant on one of teh radio phone in programmes the following day. We got promted at the end of the season, so it was only one game.

That said, mind back on job a couple of days later and minor corrections sorted out within seven days.

After quite a difficult write-up, the whole viva day was weird. I was told to prepare thoroughly for the viva, with me needing to know what I was reasonably expected to know (not just contents of thesis, but supporting theory and science, and I was also told I had to be thorough on characterisation techniques used during my PhD) and I needed the two and half months to cover the background theory he pointed me at.

In the end I was wound up like a spring come the viva, however, the nature of questioning indicated after 20 minutes I was through. It still didn't stop the whole viva stretching out for a good four hours as the external was genuinely interested in the project and she wanted to have a good chat about it.

There were other weird things happen durign the viva, but those I'll leave out this time round.

Ian (Mackem_Beefy)