Towards the end of PhD, am facing towards a future of uncertainty. It's hard to stay positive.

18-Oct-19, 08:28
edited about 26 seconds later
Avatar for concernpie
posted about 8 months ago
My PhD is in computational materials science.

After joining for PhD, initially, I was unmotivated as I was not able to understand how to proceed with my research. The project got interesting after 1.5 years into the PhD as I started understanding the fundamentals better. But it took more than 2 years to get some publishable results.

When I started my PhD, I had confidence that I will do well and get next position easily. However things did not go well overall. Highlights from my PhD experience can be summarized as follows:

First: it has taken me a year more to complete my PhD than my colleagues. I have taken 5 years to submit my thesis.

Second: I have just 1 first author and 1 second author publication from my PhD till now. 3 more manuscripts will be submitted in a month.

Third: I have no internship experience. Just 4 months of R&D job experience after my Masters. My PhD advisor did not appreciate taking internship during PhD.

Fourth: I am applying for industrial positions and postdoc positions and have not received any positive response.

I am really worried about my future. I am an international (Indian) student in the US and don't know what will I do once I graduate. My advisor doesn't help me with academic contact, and I am not receiving any response from my applications.

I am finding it hard to stay positive and keep it together. I am already 30 years old. I feel useless and am questioning my decisions 5 years ago.

Has anyone else gone through this? How did you stay positive?
20-Oct-19, 14:42
edited about 2 seconds later
by EmiGeo
Avatar for EmiGeo
posted about 8 months ago
Hello, I am new to the forum.


I think you MUST stay positive. I am finishing my phd, so you are in the same situation as me.

In all these years I have learned that academic career is sometimes a lonely path and many times you don´t get support except from yourself.

In your message you numbered all negative aspects. Try to focus on the positive aspects that you have developed in your PhD time and use them to decide your further decisions.

If you find frustrating the academic career path, then is natural to start a uncertainty time until you find the right place to make a meaningful work.

Best wishes!


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