In the fifth installment of our Connected Conversations series, Bennett Donovan, practice manager of Managed Services at Blackbaud, talks about how he went from history PhD to data-management specialist, how he uses his PhD in his current position, and what he sees as the most important and enjoyable aspect of his job.
In the third installment of our Connected Conversations series, Rachel Bernard, program officer at the American Council of Learned Societies, talks about a typical workday, how she uses the research and communications skills she gained from her PhD, and what she thinks graduate students can do to prepare for life outside the academy.
“Oh, you have a PhD, so you must be a professor?” Emily McGinn, digital humanities coordinator at the University of Georgia, is not unfamiliar with the question. As she says, “The resulting blank stare is often followed by something like, “So … you scan stuff?” Such is the nature of the alt-ac existence, not quite legible, almost interpretable, nearly recognizable.”
“I was unsatisfied with many aspects of university work—for example, the isolation and competitiveness—and eventually discovered I’d exhausted the possibilities at my disposal or realized that what I was looking for or enjoyed doing was not there. I decided to bring my love of learning, along with my drive for accomplishment and success, to the world beyond the university.”