Jul 7, 2007

research, living & life

For the few people that still come to this space expecting to find news on my research, just some notes to let you know that what i had dream and fight to get a grant for being able to finance my PhD, turned out to be something far from what i would discovered. I am still waiting for my grant!

Because I'm a full time worker in a research government lab (where they do not invest in workers research education & only use it at workers costs), in order to receive the grant that i won, from last years national FCT's grants:
  • I need the written consent of my research lab, saying that they authorize me to do my PhD without receiving my salary (according to Portuguese National Science & Technology Foundation norms for the research grants). I have been waiting for the answer since last year, and still nothing!
  • When they eventually decide, I will loose my salary, and my income will be even worst then before i applied for the grant, making the grant feel like a poisoned gift
In the course of my life I married and proudly became the mother of two kids. It's becoming real difficult to tell them to proceed with their studies (they are now 17 & 15 years old), in a country were a house maid (that i would gladly pay for, if i could) earns more than someone that works full time in research. What lessons are they taking out of my discourse versus practicing?

Something must be wrong in my present life. It seems that the efforts I've been making in the last years are all wrong and do not make any sense. Since I went to work for my current organization:
  • I have been told that always exceeded the objectives they have given me
  • I have worked in team and helped create sharing practices
  • I've introduced new practices where old ones didn't work
  • I've shared my resources and documented my practices
  • I found solutions to solve problems, when resources where scarce or unavailable
  • I have had the best evaluations from my hierarchies since I came to work for them, but...
  • ... the promotions only included more work, more responsibility, but no money!
So 5 years of my life telling my family that "working hard will help us have a better life", working full time, finishing a masters research (extra time), even incurring in costs in the name of a better future for my Organization and hence for myself and all the people i work with, translates in nothing that i can give back to the well being of my family:
  • I've been moved by the dream of being able to contribute to my family needs
  • I always believed in giving the most to the people i am with
  • I enjoy learning knew things and use them in everyday work and life
  • My best learned lessons have been those where something didn't work
I have been trying to make sense of all this situation... but i keep going in circles. I feel that i am wasting my time. There must be other ways of living life

I once thought that money was not important, but in the last years I've changed my mind: the grocery man thinks it is, so I «had» to agree with him ;-)

6 comments:

  1. One of the reasons I'm pursuing a PhD at all is that I receive support from the research lab where I work. Sure, it's tough to work full time and be a doctoral student, but my bills are paid. Your situation is horrible -- it also seems very short-sighted on the part of the research lab. They would benefit from your continuing education and would receive great returns on investment. I hope you find some way to make it work.

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  2. Hi Christina,

    The problem, as they tell me, is not them. It's the system they are part of.

    From what I've done in past situations, I'm sure I belong to the kind of people that always come up of ways to make it work... just hope I can find a good way of doing it.

    Hope, one of this days, we can finally meet. Until then, I'll keep on connecting through writing.

    Thanks for comming

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  3. embora a outro nível, percebo-te tãaaoo bem!

    beijinho

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  4. lamento que as coisas continuem tão complicadas. o desrespeito pelo empenho e pela qualidade de desempenho das instituições públicas faz-se sentir a muitos níveis, de muitas maneiras, mas a tua é injustíssima. o exemplo que dás aos teus filhos é de coerência, de luta pelas crenças e pelas opções empreendidas, de escolha própria ao invés de seguidismo. e dos tombos e desconfortos que isso acarreta. espero que o nó se desate, espero que os teus filhos continuem a reconhecer a excelente profissional, net-amiga, e suponho mãe, que és, e que ests visitas para saber da tua tese encontrem notícias sobre um fluir suave desse necessário trabalho!!

    beijo

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  5. Olá,
    só hoje dei com o teu site.
    estou com o mesmo problema, embora numa área distinta.

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