The Inbetween Year – Goals

As they say, you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone. I jokingly tell family and friends that this is the first time I’m not a student in 20 years. (It’s not wrong) As much as I’m already cringing at the non-student prices for society memberships and conference fees, I must admit that having a faculty/staff parking pass is sort of amazing.

I was fortunate to find temporary employment through the State Museum of Natural History. I spend my days sorting through very old books in a quiet corner of the building and get to eat lunch with a pretty fun bunch of people. My university Wi-Fi miraculously still works, and that brings with it journal access. Not a bad set-up, if you ask me.

My biggest challenge at the moment is getting my first manuscript into the hands of a journal. I’ve never done this before, and I’ll admit I have a large mental block about it. However, I’m also applying to Ph.D. programs, and if I can get something submitted before I turn in an application, why wouldn’t I?

These are my goals for the coming academic year (2016-2017):

  • Get the first chapter from my Master’s thesis through the publication process
  • Successfully apply to a Ph.D. program
  • Give my first conference talk, hopefully at the Joint Meeting of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists in Austin (July 2017), on a collaborative project that’s still in the planning stages
  • Complete and submit for publication a project I started during my Master’s, originally for an Ecological Niche Modelling and Mapping course
  • Submit the manuscript for my first ‘side project’ on Plio-Pleistocene Ambystoma

I’ll also be attending the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology meeting this year! Will I see you there?


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