1. About
  2. Features
  3. Explore

Are there people out there who can provide first hand account or refer me to literature that discusses the influence of PhD advisor on your chances of getting a faculty job?

1 Answer 1

That is a very good question and more complicated to answer because of different dynamics which can occur during your PhD. I want to keep them short, but I have first- or second-hand experience in all of them:

Influential supervisor: Is Lead-PI; has several projects; has some PhD and Pos-doc students; has a high h-index; etc.

  1. You have an influential supervisor and you come along with him during your PhD: You will have high chances to get into a good position; the recommendation letter will look great, and you will have done a good job publishing high-impact papers.
  2. You have an influential supervisor and you both get not really along: You need to count one or two extra years for your PhD; your publication record will be ok (generally, also depending on the requirements of the university); your recommendation letter will be more or less. From my experience, people in this situation always go to industry even though I think they are good scientists,but they just got disappointed.
  3. You don't have an influential supervisor and you both don't get along with each other: Disaster!

My recommendation: It is more important that you have a good working atmosphere with your supervisor than to have a supervisor which is involved in too many things and he/she will not have time for you.