I had posted here my problem with my supervisor 5 months ago. How a second student being given my project and I was not allowed to pass. I am getting kicked out of my own project. It has been handed over to the other student. After 5 months from raising my complaint, they finally admitted that other student has the same research proposal, results and the future work of my own project. My supervisor said my attandance was poor 6-8 hours a week, but thanks gad The lab manager accepted to be my witness to proof my daily attandance. But the university does nothing about that they said they presented the photo ID of me to other lab groups and there are no one recognize me! That's so unfair!
These weak excuses do not cover up their heinous act towards me from stealing my results.
I need your help. I need a solicitor specializing in this field to take my rights from the university and the supervisor.
How far into the project are you?
If you're still within your first or even second year, would it not be better to gracefully withdraw and start afresh next year with a new University and new project?
I've seen enough fall outs in Universities to know they close ranks to protect there image and reputation. Other researchers are already towing the line and I'm sure the lab manager will be quietly advised to back down before long.
I've been at the wrong end of similar (second post-doc) and know that it doesn't end well. Even my own PhD supervisor talking about another case suggested that the University would close ranks to see off the problem. I also saw an unwanted maths lecturer basically relieved of all his duties until he finally got the message and walked. He was not sacked and coontinued to be paid, but had nothing to do except for a daily check of his e-mails.
If you are near the end, then perhaps trying to resolve through the proper channels should at least be exhausted and also talk to your student union. Once you involve a solicitor or even the University Ombudsman (very last resort), then you will see how effectively the University closes ranks.
You supervisor wants you out. Going queitly might at least give you a good chance of finding a new project at a different University. If you make a fuss, your name may be "mud" (i.e. effectively blacklisted) as far as a future supervisor is concerned.
Sorry to say all this but I've been there,
There is something about this story which doesn't add up.
I have a gut feeling that you are not giving us the whole picture here.
Successful people generally don't get kicked out for no reason but you appear to be painting the picture of the good student who simply loses their position for no reason whatsoever.
In all my years of experience watching working relationships break down I have never seen one which is completely one-sided like this and whilst I am happy to be proven wrong, I tend to always trust my experience and instinct.
My guess is that you have either given the impression of not been putting in enough hours, not getting good enough results, not achieving other targets expected of you or have been at the root of a personality clash. Those are the usual problems in 99% of all cases I have observed and I have seen way more than I can count. For what it is worth, I personally have been at the centre of 3 of those and it took me a while for my ego to accept my role in my own downfalls. I now advice other similarly hot headed individuals who seem intent on making the same mistakes as me.
Three things have been brought up by you which raise red flags for me. First you were told by more than one person that your scientific English isn't good enough but apparently you have disagreed with all of them, choosing instead to believe the word of a non-expert. Re-thinking this would be a good idea.
Second that your hours are not up to scratch and nobody else in close neighbouring groups recognises who you are. Again apparently literally everyone is telling lies and you are the only one holding the truth?
Then thirdly you appear to have pressed the nuclear button by making a formal complaint and then announcing in front of the university authorities that you are terminating all contact with your initial supervisor when it seems you have already failed your viva and been replaced. That smacks of ego right there.
You need to be absolutely honest with yourself here over what went wrong before you waste money on a court case you will certainly lose.
Personally, just based on what you have posted, I would agree with a poster above and strongly, and I do mean strongly, recommend that you drop this, learn whatever lessons you can about yourself and move on.
One caveat. I am, as I do with everybody else, taking your series of posts at face value. The above is the impression you have left on me. Please feel free to correct me if I am wrong on any of this.
Post understood. As you say, posts must be taken at face value and my own past history as described below is an example why.
In my case "personality clash" was a big factor, though it also became clear I was employed simply to relieve the principle researcher's workload. They'd also changed their minds between me signing the contract and me starting, meaning we were contracturally stuck with each other (I was also financially trapped) despite me attempting to find another job. At my starting kick-off meeting, I was described as "very much a second choice, a stop gap measure". The senior Prof. looked at the principle researcher and said in front of me "we'll just have to make do" as though I wasn't there. I'd not yet done any work for them???
There'd been an industrial tribunal lost by a previous staff member against him, which made the local press and the case described had been nasty. On the basis of this I almost withdrew from the contract, but well meaning family members persuaded me the case was nothing to do with me. Only after I started did I truely learn about the senior Prof.'s formidable reputation and by then it was too late.
As regards self-blame could I have been more duty-diligent? I was doing serious hours and don't know what more I could have done. I was not an exact role match meaning mistakes (which I made) were always likely as I had to learn the job from scratch. They clearly needed someone already experienced in the role, which I wasn't. I lacked certain specific skills they needed; better had they recognised this and rejected me for their own sake at interview.
I learn't from the above a situation CAN be one-sided and regards my mistakes, taking the job in the first place was my career-damaging biggest when the warning signs were already there.
One brief addition to the above (sorry if I've been long-winded, the situation is hard to describe), was I did look at what action I could take over my treatment during that year. However, looking at the previous industrial tribunal and talking things through with an employment agent it was clear that the "closing ranks" situation I described meant it was my word against theirs. Always only launch a complaint as a very last resort.
That said, it did make me laugh after the fact that (no direct help to me as I wasn't a student at the time of my second post-doc) I found out the student union unofficially had a person "used to dealing" with difficult academics and the senior Prof. wasn't the only difficult academic at my "second post-doc" University. I was told of other cases similar to mine (one including a former colleague) and one small crumb of comfort is at least I survived to the end of my contract.
As Pm133 points out, "making a formal complaint and then announcing in front of the university authorities that you are terminating all contact with your initial supervisor" is also to me badly handling the situation and exacerbating confrontation.
There are people in academia who are ill-equipped to man-manage. You realise quickly more contentious characters who might be high impact paper-producers can be immune to disciplinary action due to Universities being more interested in reputation than recruiting decent people with good man-mangement skills. Only if a situation is extremely damaging might they dismiss more fractious people, with it being easier to close ranks and protect the complainant even if the complaint is justified.
Given my own experiences, that is why I say to the opening poster that if possible write off your experiences, learn from any mistakes you made and move on to a fresh Uni., a fresh set of faces and research project to start afresh. If you need to brush up your scientific English, so be it.
Genuinely interesting couple of posts there mackem_beefy.
I can tell you what I personally would have done during that first meeting.
I would have stood up, told them that this wasn't a working relationship which would work well, apologised and told them I was leaving. I would wish them well on their search for a replacement and I would walk out.
As you found out, there is little worse than persisting with that type of person.
I am like this in interviews as well. If I detect a bad match then I will stop an interview immediately. Done that a few times. Never regretted it. It is very important that you realise your personal value and worth to others without being arrogant or aggressive with them. Make no mistake though, you should take no unreasonable crap from anyone. You deserve to be treated with respect.
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