The Waiting Room

This could take a while...

Monday, April 28, 2008

I Should Have Just Torn Her A New One

Posted by Seeking Solace |

I met with a couple of fellow adjuncts to discuss some of our shared issues and concerns. I mentioned my desire/frustration with wanting to work at College on a full time basis, but my JD does not carry the weight that a PhD does. One of my colleauges (who has a PhD) said the following:

"Well, what do you expect with such an inferior degree? That's the way academia works, so just accept it."

Oh, snap!

First, my JD is by no means an inferior degree. Just becuase I was not required to write a dissertation and defend it. that does not make my degree any less meaningful. I would challenge this person to sit for the Bar Exam in my state which has the second hardest exam in the country.

Second, studying and practicing law gives me a unique skill set that can be very beneficial across many disciplines, not just law.

Third, College would not have hired me if they thought I did not have the cred to back up my skills.

Fourth, Fuck you beeyatch!

Now, I don't know if this person was trying to be snarky or just opened her mouth and inserted her foot. But this PhD/lack of PhD thing really chaps my ass. I could have given her the rant that I just wrote, but I didn't. I just let it go. Sometimes, it's not worth conforming ignorance and/or stupidity. And truthfully, I have more knowledge in my little toe that this person does. And, my students like me.

But, I do wonder if not having a PhD holds me back from reaching my full potential. Opportunities to teach at the law school level are very limited. Often, politics are involved in the hiring process. But, there is a wide world of opportunity at the undergraduate level.

On the other hand, having a PhD is no guarantee that I will have a better job or taken seriously. Why spend the next three to five years pursuing something that will only give me one definite thing...more debt.

Sigh. I should have kicked her ass.


AliceAcademic said...

She sounds pathetic. I think its a sign of her own inferiority complex that she had to demonstrate her supposed "superiority," by leaning on her credentials rather than engaging with you and communicating about issues at hand. Its not like you could have said anything to her, I think you handled it really well.

RageyOne said...

Oh, how rude of her! By no means do all of us who earn PhDs feel as she does. She gives those of who respect our professional colleagues in other fields a bad name.

I'm with alicacademic. It sounds like she has some sort of complex and needs to get over it.

Ianqui said...

That's just a seriously crappy thing to say to someone. She seems to have a superiority complex.

Anonymous said...

I've heard that ass-kicking is therapeutic. What statue could you have used to defend yourself in court? Just make sure that you have a leg to stand on when she lacks knee caps.

Inside the Philosophy Factory said...

I agree that she was really insensitive -- A good friend of mine got similar comments when she was coaching debate at a SLAC. She's now an assistant dean at the SLAC's law school.

I also think that for the huge majority academicof jobs, a JD provides a great basis... and probably more than an MA.

I may be wrong, because I've done neither, but it seems to me that passing the average bar is much like sitting for comps in many disciplines.

I also think that the intellectual power necessary for a JD is probably more than is required for a PhD. Especially consideraing the more intense class schedules.

On the other hand, there is something to be said about the dissertation writing process as an educational journey. At least in Philosophy, we are required to create new philosophical positions -- and based on the large number of JDs I know, finishing a law degree doesn't require that level of engagement in the law.

A PhD also gives a level of specific and general knowledge of a discipline that a JD doesn't provide... becuase the degrees are designed to be used in very different settings.

So, while she was clearly snotty and out of line, the idea that a PhD is generally a preferred degree for teaching at the college level isn't outrageous or unusual.

I don't know what your local market is like, but our CC contract considers someone qualified to teach in a discipline with an MA + 18 hours in the specific discipline... if the standards are similar in your area, 6 graduate level classes + your JD would be more reasonable to accomplish than getting a PhD....

Anonymous said...

oh, you so should have kicked her ass.

Seeking Solace said...

Thanks everyone! I should have kicked her ass.

Defenses? Hmm...
Insanity? Too hard to win. Justification?

I'll let you know.

Arbitrista said...

My goodness that was rude. And conceited. And generally just bad form.

Prisca said...

Sorry I'm late to comment. What a rude woman! Go get her!