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Submission + - Faculty to Grads: Go Work 80 Hour Weeks! (

Ian Paul Freeley writes: Controversy has erupted after a departmental email from faculty to astrophysics graduate students was leaked. Key tips for success in grad school include, 'However, if you informally canvass the faculty (those people for whose jobs you came here to train), most will tell you that they worked 80-100 hours/week in graduate school. No one told us to work those hours, but we enjoyed what we were doing enough to want to do so...If you find yourself thinking about astronomy and wanting to work on your research most of your waking hours, then academic research may in fact be the best career choice for you.'
Blogosphere reaction has ranged from disappointed to concern for the mental health of the students. It also seems that such a culture coupled with the poor job prospects for academics is continuing to drive talent away from the field.
This has been recognized as a problem for over 15 years in the Astronomy community, but little seems to have changed. Any tips for those of us looking to instigate culture change and promote healthy work-life balance?

Comment Re:Hire two more astronomers. (Score 1) 97

That's for undergraduate Astronomy *majors*--they are getting jobs, but not as Astronomers. Of course, most Art History majors don't go on to be Art Historians either--but many of us would hope that a degree in astronomy would be more like a degree in engineering than a humanities degree.

The trouble with doing something right the first time is that nobody appreciates how difficult it was.