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 … 


Science is a girl thing. Really ?

I fell off my chair when I saw that little video buzzing of twitter & co this week-end.

It’s a promotional clip made by some people sitting in chairs and thinking about how to promote women in science at the European Commission. Yep … I’m not even joking.

Seriously, they could hardly have done a worse job then that. Although the goal (promote women in science) is perfectly legitimate, I don’t think that this is the way to do it. This is the way you sell make-up and high-heels.

If the clip is supposed to show woman in science, why is it the guy who sits  in front of the microscope and wears a white coat ? (and why does he looks at them like a creep ?) Why do they walk  and look like they were the actresses of Sex and the City ? And why is everything pink and so artificial ? 

This is just the worse way to promote equality between men and women in science, that is far from been achieved. I wondered if these people ever set foot in a lab to see how it really looks, and how it’s generally far from glamourous.

Today I attended a PhD defense where the entire jury of 8 people was constituted by 40 to 70 year old men. Girls, we still have a long way to go … (Note to myself: I should write a post to discuss this in more details some time.)