10 years

Academic, Announcements, Education

How did my Ph.D. take 10 years? First of all, that is the average for a Ph.D. in Anthropology, so it is no big deal. Secondly, it doesn’t seem that long when you divide it into three stages: taking classes (3 years), applying for grants, language study, and doing field work (4 years), and writing up the thesis (3 years). Because anthropologists are often expected to do fieldwork in another country and another language, applying for funds, studying a language, and conducting fieldwork can take up a lot of time. Some people do research at home, whether home is in Jakarta or Philadelphia, so that saves them a lot of time, but for the rest of us it is a time consuming process. It doesn’t seem so bad though because each stage is different from the previous one. I don’t feel like I’ve been spending 10 years doing the same thing. It is almost as if I’ve had three careers in the past 10 years: student, researcher, and writer.

To be honest, I don’t even feel like it will be over” when I defend. Rather, I feel like it is just beginning. After all, I hope to do more research, more writing, more studying over the course of my career. That’s the plan anyway…

But I am eager to get this stage over with!