Oct 162012

This afternoon the Natural History Museum in London, UK posted a pair of permanent curatorships at their insect collection, one for the Coleoptera collection, and the other for the Odonata and Small Orders collection. Seeing how rarely these types of jobs open up, there has been considerable buzz on Twitter, with many awesome people exclaiming how great it’d be to get a job like that at one of the premiere insect collections on the planet, but too bad they don’t have all the qualifications so they wouldn’t stand a chance and thus won’t be applying.

This is something I’ve seen far too frequently during my time in academia: people selling themselves, their work and their qualifications short, and not bothering to apply for positions they find interesting because they see invisible barriers they assume will prevent them from getting the job. I’ve seen undergrads do it, I’ve seen MSc students do it, I’ve seen PhD students do it, and I’ve seen Post-docs do it, so I figured I’d write down my observations & thoughts on what holds people back from applying for jobs, and why it shouldn’t. Continue reading »