Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Academic mooch

Well, not really. I suppose those who have positions mostly have funding for attending conferences at which they will be delegates. This morning, I sent off two emails to the organizers of the two upcoming conferences in May & June, at which I've had papers accepted, and which I would be delighted to attend, but which might likely set us back quite a bit, perhaps more than we'd be willing to shell out. I had received an email from the organizers of the May conference a few days ago indicating that one of the society sponsors was offering a "bursary" to student, retired, and unwaged participants, and would I be eligible and interested in receiving such support. Uh... yes!

The second email was to the organizers of the June conference, in response to their official notice the committee has made their final decisions and set the conference schedule and would you please confirm your attendance by the end of February. As you may recall, I had been invited to participate in that conference prior to the announcement of their call for papers. The organizer had enthusiastically received my abstract submission. Finally, he indicated his hope to include me as part of a "keynote panel" and that he was seeking funds to support my attendance and participation.

I suppose if I were a more established scholar, I might expect conferences to invite me, and to pay my way. But it's not really something I am accustomed to.


Anna said...


I feel your pain! I have been self-funding conferences for years - trying to stay academically active while hoping to finally land a position. It's a hard call sometimes - if there is enough potential, professional gain from a conference to warrant the cost. I am presenting at an international conference next month - again totally self-funded. Will there be a "pay-off" job-wise? No gaurantees. Times like this I confess to envying our full-time employed fellow Ph.D.'s their conference budgets!


ArticulateDad said...

Thanks, Anna, for the comment. I admire your resolve and commitment. Yes, it is easy for us to envy other's expense accounts. But then, it's easy for them to envy our freedom.