Friday, 12 October 2018

Do you have a future in Academia?

Head of Aberdeen Business School at RGU, Professor Elizabeth Gammie, talks about choosing academia as your potential graduate route.

       1) Which degrees/qualifications do you look a candidate to have?

We usually look for applicants to have a PhD or be in the process of writing up their PhD. The PhD topic is usually related to the area that they have applied to teach in. For example, if you have applied for a lecturing post in Entrepreneurship, then we would expect the PhD to be in Entrepreneurship. The subject matter for the first degree us less relevant. 

        2) What makes an exceptional employee?

Someone who is well rounded, can deliver well prepared material, and who the students relate to and enjoy their classes. Alongside publishing good quality research papers and attracting research funding. What really determines exceptional performance is someone who is a proactive employee, constantly striving to improve what they do and what the School does, who innovates and is creative in their thinking.

        3) What impact do graduates have within your business?

Staff are the lifeblood of a university and all employees have a significant role to play in delivering on both our teaching and academic commitments.

        4) Which elements do graduates find most challenging?

Probably standing up in front of a large class and keeping their attention. The first year is incredibly challenging as the preparation time for lecture material always takes much longer than expected.

        5) Why should a candidate chose academia as their grad career?

It is challenging but incredibly rewarding career. There are also lots of opportunities for career progression. Making a difference to young people's lives by inspiring and empowering them to reach their full potential is very gratifying. There is also lots of variety - no day is ever the same. It is very flexible in terms of workload with lots of opportunities to work at home and also travel. For example, this year I have been to Las Vegas, Kenya, New York, Mexico, and I am going to China soon! 

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