Saturday, August 11, 2007

I Got a Letter This Morning

Just to follow up on the last post, here's the Frustrated Filosofer, a former philosophy grad student, talking about the APA Letter of Death. See, in the olden days before the internets, departments would send application packages out to undergrads interested in grad school. If I remember correctly, the Letter of Death was something the APA had departments send in those packages during the job market collapse of the 90s:
The American Philosophical Association first entered my life when I was twenty years old. I was finishing undergraduate school and had been admitted to a graduate school. I received a letter from them...

What did the letter say?. . . .

The letter was a sort of warning about jobs. I am sure it was carefully, and cautiously worded.

But I took it as a death sentence. I interpreted it as a message saying that at the end of my graduate career I would not have a job.

It was the bad old days, and an undergrad thinking about grad school had no reasonable expectation they could get a job at the end of a PhD. Back in the day, the APA took some reponsibility in making sure would-be grad students understood that.

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