PhD and Dhamma Study?

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PhD and Dhamma Study?

Postby no mike » Mon Feb 10, 2014 7:39 pm

After 16 years, I left my specialized career in public ed (pre-k through 12), it was too much paperwork (before, during, and after hours, weekends, etc.), and a lot of unnecessary stress, and a lot of unwholesome phenomena within the bureaucracy (on-site, local, state, and federal levels). I am now in a simple housing situation and raising my kids, attempting basic jobs, only to find it very difficult to compete in the labor market for a livable wage. My plan had been to work in a less stressful occupation, just enough to pay bills, and then have quiet time scheduled for developing my meditation practice, and having some quality time for children. Re-thinking my plan...

I am now teaching part-time at a community college and loving it. The problem is that I can only find part-time adjunct positions there. I would like to pursue a doctoral program, so I can do research and teach on a university level. Seems like a good way to find a wholesome livelihood, and a salaried job will be good for my children.

If anyone has feedback on full-time residency, getting fellowships/assistantships, etc., making it possible for me to support my children and study at the same time, please let me know :)

I am exploring topics of interest, such as religion or psychology, but I am assuming that if I am to find a fellowship, it will be in an area of greater need, such as in my specialty within education (which interests me, but not as much as something connected more directly to studying Buddhism, etc.).

Anyone with advice may post it here or email me privately.

Thank you,

Mike
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Re: PhD and Dhamma Study?

Postby Anagarika » Mon Feb 10, 2014 7:55 pm

no mike wrote:After 16 years, I left my specialized career in public ed (pre-k through 12), it was too much paperwork (before, during, and after hours, weekends, etc.), and a lot of unnecessary stress, and a lot of unwholesome phenomena within the bureaucracy (on-site, local, state, and federal levels). I am now in a simple housing situation and raising my kids, attempting basic jobs, only to find it very difficult to compete in the labor market for a livable wage. My plan had been to work in a less stressful occupation, just enough to pay bills, and then have quiet time scheduled for developing my meditation practice, and having some quality time for children. Re-thinking my plan...

I am now teaching part-time at a community college and loving it. The problem is that I can only find part-time adjunct positions there. I would like to pursue a doctoral program, so I can do research and teach on a university level. Seems like a good way to find a wholesome livelihood, and a salaried job will be good for my children.

If anyone has feedback on full-time residency, getting fellowships/assistantships, etc., making it possible for me to support my children and study at the same time, please let me know :)

I am exploring topics of interest, such as religion or psychology, but I am assuming that if I am to find a fellowship, it will be in an area of greater need, such as in my specialty within education (which interests me, but not as much as something connected more directly to studying Buddhism, etc.).

Anyone with advice may post it here or email me privately.

Thank you,

Mike


Mike, I wish you the best with your goals. As you are living in the United States, as I do, be mindful of the recent articles that discuss the lack of employability of some with Ph.D.s in this country, along with the recent trend of universities hiring professors on a part time, adjunct basis, so as to minimize the teaching overhead at the college. In other words, Ph.D level teachers are getting screwed, and will continue to get screwed. Universities are hiring teachers in the same way that they might hire a cleaning service, on a part time, low wage basis. Paid $100,000 for your Ph.D degree? No worries....at my daughter's past university in Chicago, her philosophy professor made $24,000 a year working as an adjunct prof with no benefits. He even lectured her class one day on the astronomical costs of student borrowing for BA level education in the US, vs the college's strategy of paying teachers like low wage serfs.

I don't want to appear negative ( I'm by nature an optimist) but the US is on a dangerous trend of abusing students financially in order for them to earn degrees, and then cutting them loose in a job market with low paying jobs. Don't fall into the trap of borrowing, believing there'll be high paying jobs out of the gate. See if you can find employment in your already chosen field, and work part time toward your Ph.D. degree. Assess as you go along the market for university teaching positions, and what they are paying. Along the way, study the Dhamma and look for ways to integrate it into your Ph.D program and perhaps into your teachings. You'll find time for family, study and practice, though you'll have to find ways to do so, and live with less sleep. ...

Edit: just found this article http://www.cbsnews.com/news/12-reasons- ... get-a-phd/
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Re: PhD and Dhamma Study?

Postby no mike » Mon Feb 10, 2014 9:06 pm

[quote="BuddhaSoup"

Edit: just found this article http://www.cbsnews.com/news/12-reasons- ... get-a-phd/[/quote]

I just read the article, thank you. I need to thoroughly research the need for instructors within my specialty.
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Re: PhD and Dhamma Study?

Postby daverupa » Mon Feb 10, 2014 9:35 pm

Chaplaincy is perhaps worth considering, as you proceed.
    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.
- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]
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Re: PhD and Dhamma Study?

Postby santa100 » Tue Feb 11, 2014 2:39 am

You might also want to consider switching career to other fields in high demand, some only need certification without a full 4-year degree: nurse assistant, medical billing, radiology/ultrasound technologist, etc. and with very decent pay.. http://www.indeed.com/salary?q1=ultraso ... olina&tm=1
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Re: PhD and Dhamma Study?

Postby no mike » Tue Feb 11, 2014 1:41 pm

santa100 wrote:You might also want to consider switching career to other fields in high demand, some only need certification without a full 4-year degree: nurse assistant, medical billing, radiology/ultrasound technologist, etc. and with very decent pay.. http://www.indeed.com/salary?q1=ultraso ... olina&tm=1


This is what I explain to people, getting advanced technical education is a great way to go. I looked into a technical college for trade skills, and ended up teaching there as an adjunct. Maybe I will reconsider this.

Funny thing about the ultrasound technology though, I have a hypothesis that it may cause brain damage for the fetus, based on the high incidence of autism in technologically-advanced countries. Soundwaves of that technology are tight and powerful, and we still know very little about the developing brain. I believe I read that a type of ultrasound technology is now being used for performing bladeless operations, not unlike lasers. I could be wrong, of course. I'm not a doctor or a scientist.

I have a phone call to make today at a university. I like contemplating things, and solving puzzles, so the research side of a PhD is at least equally appealing as the teaching part. But without a tuition waiver and a stipend, it's not an option.
Last edited by no mike on Tue Feb 11, 2014 1:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: PhD and Dhamma Study?

Postby no mike » Tue Feb 11, 2014 1:52 pm

daverupa wrote:Chaplaincy is perhaps worth considering, as you proceed.


Interesting, thanks.
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Re: PhD and Dhamma Study?

Postby Mkoll » Wed Feb 12, 2014 7:14 am

Hi no mike,

What was your previous job in education? What'd you like and dislike about it? How about the bureaucracy? Any tips for a newcomer?

Sorry for asking such general questions. I'm looking towards a teaching career and I'm always happy to hear anything about the experience of others, whatever they are and however they may relate to the subject.

Thanks!
Peace,
James
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Re: PhD and Dhamma Study?

Postby chownah » Wed Feb 12, 2014 8:12 am

Mkoll,
If you teach in high school in the u.s. You might have to lead the pledge of allegiance to the flag and enforce the rules surrounding it.......you also will be expected to take the choosing of cheerleaders as an important activity.......and that the pseudo nationalism called "school spirit" will have to be promoted and given the highest esteem.
Just a short list of things I could not support.
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Re: PhD and Dhamma Study?

Postby no mike » Wed Feb 12, 2014 11:13 am

chownah wrote:Mkoll,
If you teach in high school in the u.s. You might have to lead the pledge of allegiance to the flag and enforce the rules surrounding it.......you also will be expected to take the choosing of cheerleaders as an important activity.......and that the pseudo nationalism called "school spirit" will have to be promoted and given the highest esteem.
Just a short list of things I could not support.
chownah


pseudo-nationalism seems less harmful than nationalism :D
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Re: PhD and Dhamma Study?

Postby chownah » Wed Feb 12, 2014 12:22 pm

Pseudo nationalism is just nationalism with training wheels......soon they take off the training wheels and history will inform is of what that has meant in the past.....
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Re: PhD and Dhamma Study?

Postby no mike » Fri Feb 14, 2014 11:23 am

Okay, I may have to rule out fellowships of religious studies, but apparently, my specific field has a great need for professors, and the feds offer funding. I would have to wait another year to apply, as I just missed deadlines.

I'll continue self-study of the Dhamma :)

I used to have the uneasy feeling of wasting my mind, but now that I am on the path, I feel that I have found the right subject to contemplate. I always enjoyed the scene in the Wizard of Oz, in which the real man behind the Oz hands out a medal to the lion, a ticking clock to the tinman, and a diploma to the man of straw. Now I add an extra reflection... as Dorothy pursues along the yellow brick road, she begins to uncover the ozless operation behind the curtains of her own forms and phenomena.

As I re-visit the Wizard of Oz, that as we uncover the truth, we see no great and mighty wizard behind it all--but beyond that, past the discovery, in that very process, we master our minds and become the wizard, taking the controls away from the phenomena of conditioning, dependent co-arising, the automatic response to the flow of contact in form and mind. Is this like finding an empty captain's chair? We take the seat and observe at first, and eventually we turn off the autopilot and learn to fly? Right view from that chair, right thinking and right action at the controls, unguided by lust, hatred, and conceit? The things we could do, liberated thus.
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