Sara Billey's Advice Collection
Sara Billey's Advice Collection
Here is a random collection of useful advice that I have either
written or read. I think all of it is highly valuable. However, you
should pick and choose among these tips to find the ones that work
best for you. Every individual is unique and will need something
different to improve their life. It is very hard to give good advice
to a general audience.
Things I Wish I Had Known As A Math Major. Also, if you have
some advice for undergrads, let me know about it. We can start a
collection. Camila Vásquez has a really awesome advice essay along these lines to
start off the collection!
How to to
get a Ph.D. in mathematics in a timely fashion. (still
needs work, so I would be happy to get your feedback, same goes for
the other bits too!).
How to succeed
as a Postdoc.
succeed in Life..
- Read this! : My friend Cathy
O'Neil (aka mathbabe.org) has a really amazing way with words and a very
interesting set of experiences as a mathematician. She writes a great blog and wrote the very powerful book "Weapons of Math Destruction". I highly recommend both.
McGlaughlin's Rules on Volleyball (and so much more!)
Ravi Vakil's advice for potential students. And some further pages
I am cribbing directly from Ravi:
Pak's Blog Post on Writing Math Papers Clearly And, check
out his other posts too.
Inside Out: A Value-Based Approach to Industry Job Hunting
by Vrushali Bokil. I like what this article has to say about
applying for jobs with your core principles in mind -- whether
you go into academia or industry. What are the core values
you want to adhere to in your future/current jobs? What are
your strengths and passions?
- HOWTO: Get
tenure Blog post by Matt Might, Professor of Internal Medicine
and Computer Science, University of Alabama at Birmingham. -- My
Comments: I loved this post! I don't recall how I found my way
here, but so much of what is said here resonated with me. I too
find it very hard to write down concrete advice for getting
tenure. I thought my experience was unusual. I was a tenure
track prof at MIT where 80% of junior faculty don't get tenure. I
knew that going into the job, but of course I had some hope
anyway. One week I was on a great roll with research, I had made
10 interesting conjectures, but then one by one I found a
counter-example to each of them. By that Friday afternoon, I was
spent. I laid my head in my hands and thought "Ugh, now I will
never get tenure!". And, then the light bulb went on. "Oh ya, I
wasn't going to get tenure here anyway! ... I'm going home early
... I'll try again on Monday." I stopped suffering over the tenure
decision after that. It really helped me to enjoy the process
instead of fear it, which was much healthier in the long run.
Eventually more theorems were proved, and I got offered my current
job with tenure. I ended up in a great place. Actually, the
biggest disappointment of getting tenure was realizing that it
didn't change the job at all, if anything, it got harder to select
from all of the many opportunities I am offered including speaking
engagements, committee assignments for important work, national and
international conference organizing, and all of the interesting
mathematical research topics that I would love to understand
better. So, my only real advice on how to get tenure, is "find a
way to enjoy the process" because that is what it takes to have a
long an successful career.
for being Local Arrangements Chair(LAC) for a large
conference or workshop from my friend Seth Teller. I need to
remember this if/when I take on another big conference
obligation. I also need to remember Seth. This is a touching
summary of his life:
In memory of
Last modified: Sun Mar 24 09:16:48 PDT 2019