Well, it's finally here--my deadline is looming at the end of January! I've got mixed emotions about the whole thing. Just like high school & undergrad graduations, there's a sense of being both excited and scared about the next step. I've applied to a few postdocs and I've been accepted for a conference in June, but I'm taking this month off from the whole job search. It's a busy month--on top of writing up, I've got exam invigiliation, placement work and marking to do. Richard's going to be cooking a lot of meals and watching films by himself while I write in the evenings!
I haven't been updating the blog mainly because I've been hesitant to publicly talk about my department online. I don't want to get in trouble for criticising it, and I also believe that in terms of a work-related blog, "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all". It's not all bad--there are still some great people around and some interesting work being done in other research areas. It's just a personal thing--my research area is gone and it's affected me more than I thought it would. I just don't feel welcome there and it doesn't feel like home anymore.
They're even considering changing the name of the department. Apparently the powers that be think that "Institute" emphasises research over teaching (I didn't know that was a bad thing, but maybe it is in today's HE market), and that the word 'media' needs to be included in there somewhere. An email went round asking for thoughts on the name change & suggestions for new names, and I couldn't even bear to reply. It was just another reminder that I don't belong here. They might as well change the name, because it bears no resemblance to the ICS that I joined in 2008 (or even just in 2010).
In some ways, I feel validated by the name change--it's not just me who thinks the department has changed dramatically!