Thursday, June 26, 2008
life after grad school
I just came back from a PhD women's networking event at GE Global Research in Niskayuna, NY. I wasn't really sure what to expect, probably because I didn't really have a clue what-all GE does. I mean, they make refridgerators and washing machines, no? Well, apparently GRC does a ton of different research, and they actually have a really nice (huge) facility over in NY. It's surrounded by gorgeously lush green trees and rivers, and cute little suburbia neighborhoods. I realized that's completely the type of place I want to move to after I graduate. Sometimes I feel old for thinking that, but whatevers, sometimes you know you're ready for that transition in your life and you don't really care if other people think it's uncool. Or something. Anyway the most impressive thing about GRC is the diversity of research they do there, everything from image recognition software, electric energy control, wind power, organic LEDs, light-emitting phosphors, amazing medical devices, magnetic iron-oxide nanoparticles, to a newly-growing solar technology program. I got to chat with the solar program leader, who was really awesome, and also pregnant, and I'd love to do what she does someday. The one message that all the GE technologists seemed to emphasize that the key to career happiness is to always be learning new things, so that work never gets stale. I think that will be my new strategy. I want to be learning new things throughout the rest of my life. That's right, the next 100 years. (All that sunscreen, vitamins, and rowing had better pay off...) Anyway, I could really see myself working at a place like GE Global Research. If only I could uproot it (and the surrounding natural habitat) and relocate it to California, so that my lovely boyfriend would agree to living near it! Gahhh. That old two-body problem, as they say.