Thursday, June 9, 2011

A fork in the road...

I hate making decisions.

I know I want my Phd.  Why do I want it though?  The prestige, the acheivement, the knowledge, the skills, etc but do I want the job at the end?  Do I want a job where I will always be competing and proving my intelligence?  Where I need to produce, produce, produce.. constantly fighting for grants for my research. 
I don't think I will ever have the capacity to lead a research team, I am just not brave enough for that (not yet anyway).  But I love doing lab work.  I love doing things that others can't - things that challenge me.  I want to be working in a lab, doing research that I know, understand and love.  I want to do immunology and disease research - cancer research even.  Not as the head of a lab, but as the member of a team, working toward a common goal.  I want to feel valued and important.

So the first option, which is to quit altogether and get a job, really doesn't feel like an option.  Though really, as a back up plan, it is probably okay.  I could get a job in research somewhere and get my PhD further on down the line in a feild of research I already have knowledge and experience in. 

I don't know how it would look having a year of a PhD already done though, would that mean that if I did a PhD in the future, I would only have two and a bit years left to do it in.  I would rather go for my masters if that was the case.

And that is my second option.  Get a masters instead.  That would give us a few months in the lab to get me settled and confident and in the right direction and then I would be on my way.  It would depend on getting either Jennelle or Fiona to supervise here.

And that brings me to my third option - heading down to the Uni of Western Sydney and finishing there - that covers a few options in fact.  I could see if there is a RA job there and work for a year or so before moving into a PhD, or I could see if I could do my work at their lab while still obtaining my PhD under the CQU  banner.

No matter what, I need to stay until the end of the year.  Dave has just started getting decent hours at work, I have some work coming up which should ease things financially, and I feel like things are just starting to work for me. 

So I feel like my options are that if I want to stay here, I need to change topics.  If I stick with this topic I can opt out at a masters, or I can change universities somehow!

To be continued!

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