The Attic (a name which commemorates our first physical location) is, first and foremost, a site for the research students of the School of Museum Studies at the University of Leicester: a virtual community which aims to include all students, be they campus-based and full-time, or distance-learning and overseas. But we welcome contributions from students of museum studies - and allied subject areas - from outside the School and from around the world. Here you will find a lot of serious stuff, like exhibition and research seminar reviews, conference alerts and calls for papers, but there's also some 'fluff'; the things that inspire, distract and keep us going. After all, while we may be dead serious academic types, we're human too.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

If doing a PhD isn't tough enough....

Now we have to contend with people who can do them in two years whilst an undergraduate and also without a BSc in the subject they are studying!!! This came to light whilst I was idly looking at the University of Leicester home page where Mohammad Al-Fayez's amazing story was headlined....

But then I read on. It transpires that he already has a BSc from another university, or so it suggests, which makes the whole thing rather confusing. However Mohammad's experience as a PhD student is sure to strike some as familiar, as he states in the article;

"A postgraduate student needs to focus, persevere and be open to inspiration. The biggest surprise for me was how lonely research work can be, in spite of all the help and camaraderie available. Using your intellect is not enough. It takes a lot of hard work and complete commitment to succeed."

I wonder however if stories like this are motivating or unhelpful, especially to those who struggle with their PhDs. For me it was more of a neutral response, lucky him I thought and went back to grappling with the ways in which I am going to be taking my own PhD forward.

On another note (yes it is going to be one of those pointless rambles today) I noticed now that the word 'curator' is breaking out of the museum sector and is being used in a host of other contents, particularly the music festival world. For example I attended Bestival over the weekend on the Isle of Wight, which was curated by Rob da Bank, otherwise a Radio 1 DJ. Other music events which have been curated include the South Bank Festival. Considering the museum world is mostly ignored by those outside it, for me it is interesting that the term we most associate with it is now being used more widely. I guess it gives a posher alternative to 'putting together' :D

1 comment:

Amy said...

I'm thinking 'crikey!' and 'why?'. Why make your life even more difficult? It's also making me feel more than a little depressed. I should be working rather than sitting here in my pyjamas, mucking about on the Interweb and half watching 'Homes Under the Hammer'! ARGH!