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  • When the Obstacle is the Course: Job Security in Academia

    This post is part of the series called Obstacles in Academia, which aims to highlight the many challenges young scientists face today.

    One of the biggest challenges facing young scientists today is the extreme competition for positions at researching universities and delayed (if at all) job security. In America only 57% of doctoral students will have a PhD ten years after their first date of enrollment. (Economist) Even more grim is the fact that only 12.8% of those PhD students actually end up as a tenured professor. (Larson 2013) Out of every 1,000 science PhD grads, only around 45 of them end up a full-time professor at a research university.
    Data from The Royal Society's 2010 report, The Scientific Century: securing our future prosperity.
    The average age of those offered tenureship has also increased to 39 years. Watson was 24 when he did the double helix work. Yet according to European University Institute, the average age of Full Professors is 55.