Last week I authored a guest post on the Nature Soapbox Science blog as part of their PhDelta series with the title “PhDelta: The Road Less Travelled – From PhD to Software Development.” The series is focused on science PhDs, leading up to the SoNYC discussion that will be held on August 20th, looking at the PhD system, careers in academia, and alternative career paths for science PhDs.
At Kitware, quite a few of us have PhDs in a fairly diverse range of disciplines. It is great to see wider discussion of the PhD as it exists today, along with a growing realization that many PhD students will not ultimately remain in academia (as was once the case). The purpose of the series is to spark an open conversation about PhDs, and I think to give people considering or in a PhD program multiple viewpoints and open reflections on their experiences. My career path has been quite different from what I initially imagined, but I would not change it and got a great deal from my PhD experience.