Doing science isn't always about going to the lab, creating experiments and researching new ways to cure cancer, DrugMonkey says. Sometimes it involves writing endless grant proposals and trying to secure new sources of funding. When he first began his life as a researcher, DrugMonkey says he wasn't at all concerned with his "career" and was more focused on "doing the science I wanted to do and following the steps" of grad school and a postdoc. Plus, the scientists he worked with didn't make a big deal out of what they had to do to secure funding for their labs, DrugMonkey adds. But now, that's part of what he does as well. Perhaps, he adds, "the system of NIH-funded research as we currently know it selects for a certain type of scientist. Perhaps there are going to be people who would otherwise make fine (superior?) lab heads and research team leaders who are screened out because of the whole grant game." But then again, DrugMonkey says, maybe researchers need to realize that the jobs they have are going to have aspects to them that are unpleasant, and that maybe they might come to tolerate and even enjoy some of these aspects. "And in the end analysis, like it or not, these things that you have to do are part of the job. Inextricable. And you have chosen to do this job. So you do the dirty bits along with the fun bits," he says.
Doing Science Isn't Always About Doing Science
Jun 24, 2010