PI Quotes – 5 “Grad students don’t stay at the lab on week-end if their salary is too high”

I realized that until now, all my PI Quotes were either funny, either truly positive.  Nevertheless, we all know that some PI’s go from being a little offensive here and there to complete jerks. You can judge by yourself where on this ladder this one stands …

Let’s give some context: I’m on a conference, around a table, talking with other PhD’s, Post-Doc’s, and PI’s about our salary. We note that a swiss PhD student earns probably more then a french PI … (true story)

Then, this  PI says : “Grad students don’t stay at the lab on week-end if their salary is too high. They rather book a flight for a week-end in Barcelona ! That’s not good.”

That literally knocked my socks off because : 1 – He/She was not drinking, and 2 – It was not meant as a joke … 1% of me knew that there was so truth there, but 99% of me also shouted at him “sorry whhaaattttt ?” , noting that this person really thought that “grad student = dumb research robot that is meant to stay in the lab 24/7” …

At the end, beyond revolting, disrespectful, and contemptuous, it’s just really sad … 

PI Quotes – 4 “Writing is very hard work”

New PI quote today, and this one comes from my nowadays PI ! It’s still related to the writing process I talked about in my previous post. As I said, I had never written a real scientific article (when you’re 24 I think it’s still OK to say that); and started with a review a few months ago. It got published over summer.

After I wrote the first draft, I gave it to my supervisor and he sent me back a tracked changed version. Among other things, he wrote :

“Please do remember that writing is very hard work, and a lot of rewriting, deleting, until you are fully fed up with it….
Nevertheless, we are getting there.”

At that point I was so psyched about getting to write a review that I thought it was crazy and impossible to be fully fed up with it.At the end of the submitting/revision/rewriting process, I knew what he meant. So for those of you who are newbies in writing (like me), be aware ! You’ll notice that I also have the nicest and most supportive supervisor ever, since he added the comforting “we are getting there” to reduce the shock when seeing all the track changes he made …

😉

Have a great week-end …

;

PI Quotes – 3 “If my son ever tells me he wants to be a scientist … “

Time for “PI Quote” number 3 …

I discussed here and there with my supervisor about making a career in academia, being a scientist, etc … So one day were I felt really good about everything, I told him that I definitely wanted to become a scientist !

I looked at mi with this half-happy/half-sad face, and said:

“If my son ever tells me he wants to be a scientist, I will slap him in the face !” 

I still think about here and there, and wonder if this was not the most blunt warning ever …

Actually, I still don’t know what to think about this …  I think no parent advices his kid to do the same job then him … or does it  happen ? What do you say ?