Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Escape from Toyland

This is the dynamic of the lab I work for:

Grad student 1 - runs around doing benchwork all day and answering open-ended questions from boss such as "see if Prof X can help"; she cannot "code" and thus is spoken down to whenever instructions are given

Grad student 2- sits at computer all day, tasked with "making a DNA library", which has yet to happen in the 2 years he has been here- however he can "code" and thus is given a great deal of respect. All interesting research questions are reserved for him, as he and boss have "discussed" them in the past. Has been asked to help a student with a single task (measure growth curve) and failed, despite his regularly repeating the mantra "growth curves were my LIFE in my rotation"

Postdoc (me)- splits time between running around doing lab work and coordinating the work of two undergrads, each of whom the boss made clear should have their own project. I, meanwhile, have no concrete project of my own. Am treated like an undergrad myself- eg, when I expressed concern over the centrifuges heating up samples due to misalignment, boss informed me that the centrifuges are not temperature controlled. (Fucking DUH)

Undergrad 1- actually helpful, so the boss has given him 63,000 additional duties to prevent him from actually becoming useful to me

Undergrad 2- needs almost literally constant instruction and supervision, yet constantly interrupts me while I am speaking. Never brings work to do during down time, preferring to relate inappropriate personal anecdotes (causing the boss to privately tell me he would speak to Undergrad 2 about this, although he ended up failing to do so, as he made a group announcement condemning such practices while Undergraduate 2 was absent).

Fun, fun, fun.

No comments:

Post a Comment