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Professor Mommy: Finding Work-Family Balance in Academia
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Professor Mommy: Finding Work-Family Balance in Academia

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  117 ratings  ·  20 reviews
Professor Mommy is a guide for women who want to combine the life of the mind with the joys of motherhood. The book provides practical suggestions gleaned from the experiences of the authors, together with those of other women who have successfully combined parenting with professorships. Professor Mommy addresses key questions--when to have children and how many to have; w ...more
Hardcover, 218 pages
Published July 1st 2011 by Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
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3.78  · 
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 ·  117 ratings  ·  20 reviews

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Nov 17, 2011 rated it really liked it
I'd recommend this to anyone considering graduate school, period. While it's geared towards mothers, the information and descriptions offer a very accurate and realistic portrait of graduate school and early professional life as a faculty member. I wish it'd been around when I was starting out. I found the sections about time management and comparing the different kinds of schools you can work at (R1, R2/3, etc) extremely helpful and interesting. I gleaned so much about how to run the research e ...more
Feb 17, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: work
realistic but depressing... didn't tell me anything i wasn't already aware of as a junior faculty member struggling w/ work-life balance and the decision of whether to stay in "academy", but a recommended read for any considering PhD and/or the choice between academia vs. industry
Adam Lawrence
Oct 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
I read this book at my partner's request because it explains the process of deciding, planning, and executing all the steps of becoming a tenured professor while simultaneously becoming a mother. I did not expect to get much out of it beyond familiarity with the process but it deftly described the challenges of being a woman with children striving for tenure, tips on navigating these challenges, and questions to ask yourself along the way. I would highly recommend this book to any upcoming profe ...more
Apr 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
This book is a good guide for women who work in an academic job or are interested in working in an academic community. It provides a great deal of insight on the types of questions one should ask themselves when they are weighing the possibility of pursuing a faculty job, how family and professional obligations compete for time and attention, and how to navigate the panoply of choices and options women in academic careers have when they consider a professional trajectory and the possibility of b ...more
Catherine Gillespie
May 15, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: academia, parenting, work
Partially in response to Mama, PhD, Rachel Connelly and Kristen Ghodsee, both professors at Bowdoin, wrote Professor Mommy: Finding Work-Family Balance in Academia. While Mama, PhD left me feeling ambivalent about academia, Professor Mommy turned me off almost completely, but in a helpful way.

Unlike Mama, PhD, Professor Mommy is not a book of essays exploring the impact of motherhood on an academic career, but rather a book that aims to disabuse readers about myths of motherhood/academia while a
Jul 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
I appreciated the advice in here and candid points. I found the suggestion of leaving family pics out of the campus office to be unnecessary and a borderline patriarchy perpetuation but that's a minor critique overall. Also, the flippant mention in an early chapter about how raising 4 kids on the tenure track was made possible in large part thanks to a stay at home dad --this was a quick half sentence mention at the chapters end! It's pretty huge. Childcare is extremely expensive and if you're l ...more
Aug 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
A good read for anyone on the tenure track, thinking of starting a PhD or right in the thick of it and also planning or already has a family. Their advice is often bleak while also encouraging, which is not surprising given the stress and demands of both jobs, mom and prof. They are certainly geared towards the R1 universities while still addressing the teaching college and community colleges and also geared towards those that have more expendable income than I do so the mothers can get extra he ...more
Jun 14, 2012 rated it really liked it
A good book and definitely worth a read if one is thinking of, or already in, academia. However, it is incomplete for lab scientists. There are so many more issues, particularly with regards to the mentoring of students, that social scientists and humanists do not encounter. Also, the authors stress making informed choices throughout in choosing positions. With the current job market, one often cannot make such choices.
Definitely one of the best academic career advice books I've read. And not just for the "mommy" stuff--although that's great--really it has all-over advice on publishing, on getting tenured, on how to approach colleagues for certain things. I highlighted the hell out of this book on my kindle and would recommend it to any grad student/young prof who has kids on the horizon.
Liz Delf
Nov 30, 2011 rated it really liked it
Realistic yet encouraging overview of the challenges involved in combining scholarship and kids. Chapters are broken down chronologically, by where you are on the tenure track (in grad school, on the job hunt, etc.).
Jul 30, 2012 rated it really liked it
Read this for a discussion group that will be meeting in the fall. Brutally honest, which is good. Lots of really good general professional advice, too. Found myself invigorated and ready to get shit done after reading it. Wish I'd been able to read it during grad school.
Mar 26, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommended reading for anybody (especially ladies) who are interested in pursuing both the tenure track and motherhood. This book provides a realistic yet positive picture of being successful in both worlds.
Oct 26, 2011 rated it really liked it
Frank, encouraging, detailed.
Nov 28, 2011 rated it it was ok
I think the authors sacrificed depth in favor of breadth here. In doing so, they limited its helpfulness for everyone.
Mar 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
Great book for young women if they are thinking about entering into the academy and looking for tenure. Wish I had read it a decade ago...
Dec 31, 2013 rated it really liked it
Intimidating, but empowering. Packed with useful, brutally honest information about being a professor and a mother.
May 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
Great book, with useful advice for those without children too.
Aug 06, 2013 rated it liked it
Some good insights and advice, and encouraging to hear about people who make it work...but kind of specific to the humanities and to the authors' particular situations.
Jul 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
Not for me but I can tell it is very useful for who needs it from topic selecting and accurate citations of statistic results.
Mar 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
Really great graduate school and academic career advice regardless if you are female or male, mother or not. I wish I had read some of this stuff years ago.
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