Free Advice to Graduate Students

The New York Times takes a moment from polishing Barack Obama’s shoes to report on the rise of disgraced public figures taking adjunct professorships.

After a sex scandal forced Eliot Spitzer from the governor’s mansion in Albany, he turned up at City College, teaching a course called “Law and Public Policy.” After another sex scandal forced James E. McGreevey from the governor’s mansion in New Jersey, he turned up at Kean University, teaching in the global M.B.A. program.

Congratulations current grad students; you’re being hosed. That lengthy dissertation on 18th Century LGBT Theory that your professors told you will be a job magnet is worthless. As tenured professors cling to their positions well after they reach one hundred years of age, and universities cut teaching positions to hire more Regional Assistants to the Deputy Administrator of Diversity, the only scraps left are poverty-level adjunct professorships. And guess what. The Eliot Spitzers and Jim McGreeveys of the world are feeding on those scraps before you even had a chance to apply.

Now, because Blackmailers Don’t Shoot is a charitable blog, here’s some free advice to current graduate students.

  1. Drop out. Seriously. Quit wasting your money and time on that Transgendered Pan-African Studies degree.
  2. Get a real job. You will make more money as a bartender than you will as a Teaching Assistant or and Adjunct.
  3. Become prominent and successful. I don’t know how to do this, obviously, but look to the people who are and figure out what they’re doing right.
  4. Be involved in a scandal. If you’re one of the rare Republicans in grad school, this will be easy. Say something stupid at a retirement party or make an inappropriate comment to one of your employees. If you’re a Democrat, this will require seriously weird sexual behavior or something so public that the New York Times will not be able to ignore it.
  5. Become an adjunct professor.

If you follow this advice, by this time you will have more money than you would have ever had in a lifetime slaving away in the academy, and your dream of an academic appointment will have come true. You don’t have to thank me. I’m here to serve.

NYT link via Hot Air.


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