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What are the next steps after leaving or being kicked out of a grad program?
T

So you started a PhD but did not finish? ow long were you in the program for? If less than a year, you don't have to mention your PhD at all. Just say to your interviewers that you were job hunting

Considering dropping out of a funded PhD…
T

I disagree on treating a PhD as a job. Financially, it is one of the worst possible move. The minimum stipend in UK is £17,668 a year. The average salary for a Project Administrator is £27666 per year in United Kingdom according to Glassdoor. Multiply that for 3-4 years, can you imagine the huge financial and career seniority losses?

Only do a PhD on a project that you love with a team that is good. Otherwise, it is totally not worth it. These days, a PhD no longer guarantees a job anyway. What you don't want is to suffer emotionally and financially to complete 3-4 years of PhD that you hate only to graduate and find that you cannot get grants to continue supporting your academic career due to the dwindling grant pool and lack of tenure.

Considering dropping out of a funded PhD…
T

If you know that there is absolutely no way to turn your current project into one that you have some interest in, leave. No point prolonging your pain.

You can leave in two ways. One, by looking for a new project and supervisor and transferring your scholarship across. Two, if you have no intention of being in academia, a PhD is probably less useful to your career move and so it would be best financial wise for you to get a job.

Don't waste your time staying hoping things will change. Red flags should not be ignored. I have seen so many PhD students holding on far too long and nearly all the time, the decision to stay was a bad one and the PhD student suffered and some failed their PhD completely due to bad project/supervisor.

Unfinished PhD
T

I am not sure where the problems lie. Same results? No real importance? Results correct but not justifiable? As long as you generate data and can tie it to your hypothesis, you should be able to submit a thesis and graduate either with a PhD or at least an MPhil.

Can you try to salvage what you have and submit your thesis? Even getting a MPhil is better than nothing. If you intend to leave, five years gap is hard to explain

Struggling to find a PhD Scholarship in the realm of International Entrepreneurship
T

It is easier for you to break into a consulting career at internship or apprenticeship level. I don’t think your age matters too much. What is important for you to convince the employer to take a chance on you. What can you offer that other interns, especially younger ones cannot?

You can frame it as a career track change, approach potential employers on LinkedIn, offer your services either for free or severely low pay and slowly work your way up. Considering you were willing to do a PhD for many years for extremely low allowance, a short 6 months stint unpaid or reduced rate is nothing.

If you are freshly minted master graduate, Look at PWC, Deloitte, McKinsey, Boston Consulting Group etc for their graduate program. If not, check out potential managers on LinkedIn or attend networking events to build rapport and ask them to take a chance on you. Be prepared to face many rejections. Another way is to work freelance while waiting to get full time employment with the big organisations. This would directly give you a portfolio to show future employers. Charge extremely low to get the first few clients through the door

Supervisor Concerns
T

Dear lordfarquaat,

So, you are three months in, self-funding, being dismissed constantly and not having any say in your research plan nor panel? Why on earth would you stay in such a dysfunctional relationship?

You are three months in and can jump ship without needing to explain a gap in your resume. You are self-funded so have a good chance of being accepted into a new team that you want because hey, who doesn't want a student who pays. A self funded student should have every say in the research plan and panel.

I would suggest that you have a look at other potential supervisors within or external to your university. Research the supervisors, talk to the students and postdocs in the group to see if you like the environment. Don't tell you current supervisor until you are ready to jump ship.

Struggling to find a PhD Scholarship in the realm of International Entrepreneurship
T

Hi, Sabby777,

Thank you for sharing your struggles and ambition. These are my personal opinion. I do not think you need a PhD to be a good consultant, but you will need a lot of hands-on experience in the area you are providing advice.

Instead of sinking more time, effort and money into a 4-7 year study that may or may not help you in your career choice, why don't you look for a consulting internship/ apprenticeship and talk to your respected consultant peers to see how they got where they are. Most will not have a PhD or even a Masters.

What you don't want is to be overqualified with your PhD but underexperienced with work skills. I understand it is hard to let go that you may never be called a Dr, but weigh that with having a strong career and importantly good pay down the line. A lot of PhD holders unfortunately are unemployed or working in a job beneath them due to the horrible academic job market. Looking for an industry position with a PhD is awefully hard, but much easier with a master. Peer pressure is a massive challenge, but you may be the one who have the last laugh yet

Struggling to find a PhD Scholarship in the realm of International Entrepreneurship
T

Hi, Sabby777

The area that you want to work in is quite niche, but I did find one link https://www.scholarshipsads.com/category/subject/international-entrepreneurship-management/. Not sure if the advertised scholarships are in the country that you are interested in or if they are of any use.

Personally though, I don't think you need a PhD to study entrepreneurship. Ground on job experience is far more important than reading on papers and going through online materials. Why do you want to do this PhD? If your answer if to work for a multinational, you might as well just get that job first and work your way up because a PhD won't help you. They prefer life skills. If you want to lecture on entrepreneurship, people would prefer to take a class or attend webinars hosted by actual entrepreneurs who has been round the track. If you want to start your own business, best you look for an actual mentor in business.

Mortgage v Researcher
T

Banks don't like people on short term contracts. They prefer those on permanent contracts. Your role or job is irrelevant. One way to counter short term contract would be to have a huge deposit yourself or a partner who is quite well-off. Otherwise, it's going to be tough

Still haven't found postdoc
T

The first post doc position is usually through recommendation from your supervisor. Any reason why he/she is not helping you get that first job? Like calling his/her friend to see if there is any vacancy for postdoc? I find it weird that 4 first authored papers and you can't get a job. Is there anything wrong with your recommendation letter?

What would be best solution for me to deal with toxic supervisor and lab environment
T

Sorry you had to go through this, Jassica.

I would suggest you get out. You are still in the first year of PhD so you can start looking around and see which other lab you could jump to. Don't tell your supervisor until you are ready to make the jump. See which lab has good working culture and project that you are interested in. Start talking to other labs and their students to learn more about them but don't say anything about wanting to go until you are certain that that is the lab for you. Then talk to the new potential supervisor. Once you have confirmation of new supervisor, go through your Graduate school to change your supervisor. At that stage you can tell your current supervisor. All the best

PhD Supervisor Problems with 2 months to go
T

Tell her that you will finish that new paper after you defended your thesis.

Get your postdoc admin/coordinator on board to clearly state what the immediate next steps are so you can submit. Document all the things that have happened in great detail and talk to your student union body if you have one.

Regarding the thesis, do you have a senior postdoc or other researcher to read it?

Toxic supervisor delaying graduation
T

Sorry you are going through so much challenges, Eve1234

Make sure you document everything they did, including time and date. If they are as bad as you say, they could be trying to pull your project(s) from under you and giving it to someone else. So make sure you record everything going as far back as you can on all the mistreatments/absence etc.

Might be too late to get a co-supervisor. Do you have a postgrad coordinator? Let him/her know the situation. Put in place step by step what needs to be done so you can graduate. Seek you student union for advice if you have one. Finish and get the hell out

Feeling lost and depressed after thesis submission
T

Hi, Jesse1309

You were on adrenaline, go go go for the many months. Suddenly it's all done and you are coping with the loss of purpose and routine.

I suggest you go on a holiday to properly unwind. Then if you feel ready, plan your day. Maybe set aside x hours thinking/looking/applying for job, if routine and predictability are that important to you. Then rest for the rest of the day.

Congratulations on submitting! it is a huge milestone.

4 weeks left! Is it enough?
T

Hi, hatemyphd84,

I am sorry that you are feeling so awful, BUT can you even see all the accomplishments that you had overcome in your life. You juggled divorce, illness, kids, jobs and house move, all very very serious and challenging matters. I think you are awesome.

Regarding your PhD, you are so so close to the end. A week away to do your PhD thesis sounds like a great idea. Complete what you can. It will not be perfect, but as long as you submit a PhD thesis, you have a shot. You have already come this far, you might as well try to get that PhD. In the worst case scenario, you will still have a masters.

You who have overcome many challenges can overcome this one more hurdle. All the best.