Friday, July 18, 2008

Come On In, the Water's Fine

Maybe I am a little naive. Perhaps I have just been really fortunate in my experience. Somehow, though, I have a strong sense that the academic community is much more welcoming than the corporate world. Most of the people I have talked to are at least helpful, and very often quite warm, open, and informative. If they have been brief, it has usually been because I caught them as they were headed somewhere. Still, what a great feeling, to get the sense that research professors will welcome new people into their community so freely.

As I said, perhaps I am being naive. I know politics plays a role in any interaction - after all, these people might actually have to work with me somewhere along the line and would hate to be rude - but I do not get the feeling that the people I've talked to are maneuvering. Instead they seem more like someone who just got asked about his personal collection. By showing interest in a subject they care about, I have opened the door for them to share their experience and knowledge - something they clearly love to do. After all, these individuals each got into research because of their own innate curiosity and passion for learning. Of course they look forward for the chance to share with someone else who shares their passion.

At least, that's what I keep telling myself.

-- Robert


Melissa said...

Ooooh. I have a couple of professor friends who would seriously disagree with your statement. But enjoy it while it lasts. :)

Robert said...

Don't worry. I realize how fortunate I've been. Maybe it's just business profesors... or maybe I'm dreaming.

Suki said...

On the whole, it's better than the corporate world I guess :) . Probably because one's success here doesn't depend on another's failure.

Robert said...

Often, at least from an outsider's perspective, it would seem one's success in the academic world depends a lot on working well with others. Most research is done with the help of others, for instance.

As for the corporate world, it does seem that one must succeed by beating others out, but I don't know that it's always so ruthless. I would love to research people who are successful without being cutthroat. Both of them. :)

Kady said...

You are naive, but it's ok. Don't let it take you away from your goals. As far as I'm concerned, there is no price to great to pay to satisfy an intellectual curiosity.

As my prof. hubs would say, the biggest problem w/ Academe is that you've got some of the smartest people on the planet fighting over ridiculously small pieces of pie.