How to become a professor?

professorBeing a professor is amazing: a lot of academic freedom to investigate and teach very interesting subjects and a considerable and secure salary until retirement. However, the way in which to obtain this position can be pretty hard and more than 90% of all PhD holders find a job *outside* of academia.

If you want to become a professor how do you qualify?


Why professors do not train you for the non-academic job market – and how to handle it!

Mad professorAbout 97% of all young researchers find a job *outside* academia. However, most professors focus on academic success and scientific excellence. Some professors are afraid to transform young scientists into “slaves of the market”. Others simply do not feel qualified. Most universities invest a lot of money and efforts to train PhD students and postdocs well for the non-academic job market, but most young researchers do not feel well-prepared.

Why is it so difficult for universities to fulfil these needs of young scientists?


Should I become a long-term postdoc?

long-term postdocWhen discussing career paths in life sciences with postdocs, we hear on a regular basis the wish to escape from the “rat race of the professors” by accepting a kind of long-term senior postdoc position in academia. The idea is to obtain a permanent position (and thus a safe job in economic turbulent times) which encompasses at the same time an intellectual stimulating and creative profession with some (but not too much) responsibilities. Is this what you want?


The most intelligent strategy to get hired in science

Job applicant scienceAre you nervous not to find a job? Does the insecurity nearly kill you? Are you sending out hundreds of applications without success? Stop wasting your time and change your approach. Intelligent job search and application costs time and effort but has a much higher chance of success.


Should I choose a big or a small university?

dogs small and bigChoosing the right place for a position as a PhD student, postdoc or professor is always a key career decision. Spontaneous advice from colleagues mostly tends towards big universities. However, there are good arguments to choose for small universities.


I am just an average scientist – what can I do?

just averageYou see these big science stars who publish in Nature and Science. They have huge grants, a huge machinery of high-class technology and a huge team of highly ambitious postdocs and PhD students who hope to publish in Nature or Science.

But you are not like that… How to handle the feelings of inferiority when you compare yourself with these science stars? And how to become better anyway?