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Are you a doctoral researcher? Not sure if working in academia is right for you? There ARE other options for PhD scholars and Early Career Researchers outside of academia- you probably have a good idea of government, non-profit, and business opportunities awaiting you once you graduate if you choose to leave academia.
But what you might not know is that there are communities of scholars who are using their PhDs in a unique way- the Independent Scholar global community. This community is comprised of people who all have “day jobs” outside of academia but work and publish in academic settings outside of the academic grind. Consider being an Independent Scholar as something you do for personal fulfillment, but it doesn’t have to pay the bills.
For example, I have chosen to take the Independent Scholar route and have published nine peer-reviewed papers, five of them since receiving my PhD in sociology in 2021. Writing and researching and collaborating with other scholars both inside and out of academia, is intensely rewarding for me. I also have a “day job” to pay the bills- adjunct teaching and publishing is not enough to support me financially, but I feel incredibly rewarded and grateful that the option of Independent Scholarship is there for me to channel all my academic energy into.
If this sounds like you, consider joining our active Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/NationalCoalitionofIndependentScholars
Or you can get your feet wet in the Independent Scholars world by visiting my webpage: www.kateburrowsphd.com and leave me a message and I will connect with you.
Personally, I have benefited greatly from knowing that the option of Independent Scholarship is out there. I love being able to earn a solid income while using my skills I learned in grad school, but ALSO being able to engage in true scholarship in conjunction with a supportive and nurturing community. Independent Scholarship provides the best of both worlds- a good paying job plus true academic scholarship, which is why you went to grad school in the first place, right?
Reach out, engage, and learn more! You don’t have to be full-time faculty to be a practicing academician. I, and thousands of others, are proof of that.