Archive for September 21st, 2009

PhD Diary: Laura Kelly

21 September 2009

Contributed by Laura Kelly, NUI Galway.

booksDo you consider your PhD to be a job or a vocation? Vocation, definitely. Not wanting to sound like a complete nerd, but it’s too enjoyable to be classed as a job.

In 20 words or less, tell us why you decided to do a PhD: It seemed like a fun thing to do and the natural next step after my masters.

Laura’s Diary: Being in the second year of my PhD, I haven’t yet reached the scary, panic-ridden stages of third year which I am told await me. In first year, I felt like I was trying to find my feet; looking at the literature and doing some research while tentatively trying to network with people at conferences. Second year is a strange in-between stage: on one hand, you feel more confident about your work as chapters begin to take shape, but on the other, there is a constant fear of “am I doing enough?” combined with the regular self-imposed guilt-trips when you spend an hour on Facebook that could possibly have been spent writing ground-breaking new scholarship…or not.

A typical week is difficult to surmise and this is what makes doing a PhD very different to a job. Read More