How big of a deal is academic incest to employers and phd programs?

  1. I would avoid it. Every PI will tell you to avoid it. You want to grow and make new connections. Its more for self development.

  2. This... 👆 Look at successful people's resume. Undergrad here, grad there, post doc somewhere else. You get your name and face around and build connections in your field.

  3. I did all my degrees in different places to build some confidence, to see if I was up to the challenge considering other standards.

  4. When I first started grad school I was told to worry about this and go with a program that was on paper a much better pick instead of a professor at my undergrad. That program was a poor fit (despite being a top 10 program compared with my undergrad in the mid 20s) and thankfully I was able to go back to the professor at my undergrad, which turned out to be a perfect fit and he ultimately ended up getting me a fantastic job in industry which I just started after my defense.

  5. Not a huge deal for undergrad-> gradschool, especially if you’re at a good school. Gradschool-> postdoc will likely be looked down upon though.

  6. It doesn't even make sense as a term really... It's really more like... going to bed with the same person twice? "incest" seems to imply some kind of weird intermixing but that's not even happening

  7. I've heard from a few industry people that seeing different universities on your transcripts for each degree shows you can do well in different environments and succeed under different advisors/work conditions. Whereas people who stay at the same university can't have the same said for them because you don't see it reflected in their career up to that point.

  8. So I thought this “inbreeding” (this is the term I mostly hear to describe what you are talking about) was really frowned upon and avoided in the US…. Until I started applying for jobs 🤣. My first year applying, of all the academic jobs I applied for (I think it was a total of seven), only ONE hired externally. Long story very very short, this now has me applying for industry jobs. I am not even applying to academia anymore. I spoke to some Canadian colleagues, and it is their impression that the US is insane with how common academic inbreeding is. Idk which region OP is asking about though.

  9. I wouldn't stay as a postdoc at the same institution that I did my PhD but I wouldn't mind doing undergrad and grad at the same institution. Also depends on the employer as only academia or national labs would care.

  10. I knew one person who did PhD with the same PI as his undergrad, just a different experiment. They did a postdoc at another institution that's equally top in the field, though, so they managed to establish decent connections.

  11. BS/MS at the same place, no one cares. BS/PhD at the same place some people do care. More in academia care than industry research labs. If you are going to go into industry for an engineering role (i.e., no longer research) then most all don't care at that point.

  12. it’s when you go to the same school for your undergrad and phd or do your phd and postdoc at the same place. It’s a horrible term lmao

  13. I just don’t know how to explain to people that I can’t afford to move right now? Plus where I attended undergrad has a program I genuinely think aligns with my goals. I will definitely be doing my postdoc elsewhere and set money aside for a potential move but I wish people would think beyond status 😭

  14. This. I’m getting ready to apply go PhD programs and my goal is to get into the same school I did my undergrad at. I live with my mom in the same city as the university (in a ridiculously expensive area of the US). Also, the program I’m applying to is one of the top programs in the field as is, so it just makes sense to stay. I can’t afford to move for grad school, and I’m also like 80% sure that I’ll have a mental breakdown being away from my entire emotional support system and the people I love. At this point I’m trying to preserve my mental health and financial stability over making a wide range elite connections for a career in academia that isn’t even guaranteed at this point (because tenure track positions are so hard to come by these days, and the market is probably over saturated with PhDs). I have connections and a support system at the university I did my undergrad at, and to me that’s enough. The mentality of academia is so toxic, so I’m trying to limit the damage it’s going to inflict on me as much as possible.

  15. I’m returning to the same Ivy League I went to undergrad. I don’t feel great about it but it was my best offer financially and #1 ranked program (in top 5 I don’t believe that means much of anything though).

  16. If your school doesn't carry any cache academically (aka not Stanford, Berkeley or an Ivy league etc) then it looks bad to other academics. Industry cares less but start ups are often full of quasi academics so you might run into that same attitude. If your school is in a hub of similarly strong universities (like New England or Bay Area and biotech for example) then academic incest does not factor at all since people just rotate around 30 min away for their entire career so the sympathy for wanting to live in the same area is higher. Lastly doing a postdoc in the lab where you did your PhD is a terrible idea regardless of how good your lab or your school is. If I saw this and it wasn't immediately explained by a bizarre circumstance like a spouse falling ill I would suspect the candidate has an inability to adapt outside of the PhD lab.

  17. Statistically speaking, there seem to be some advantage to being able to intellectually synthesize a diverse set of experiences across different stages of your academic path

  18. I mean I am doing it. But my undergrad was evolutionary biology (my thesis was on plants) and I’m doing biomedical sciences for my PhD. Completely different faculty, even different campuses.

  19. Go wherever you will get the best supervisor and highest scholarship. That's what I've done every time and it has worked well so far

  20. I don't think it had any bearing on my getting a job in industry. I think it matters more if you plan on continuing in academia after your PhD.

  21. I got all of my degrees from one institution, but I spent three months during my first summer as a PhD student visiting research groups at other institutions, so that I got a sense of what they were working on. I also moved between departments from my BS and MS to my PhD.

  22. Being in different labs, ideally even in different countries but at least didn't States/regions is a sign of cultural experience. That does not only include the culture of the country/region you are in but also lab and Uni culture. Every PI you have will do things differently, will have different ideas and you can learn something completely new that has nothing to do with your project from every single one. In terms of countries/regions it will also show a worldly experience that can build confidence in you bring your up deal with international students and colleagues.

  23. Undergrad and Masters at the same place is fine but if you do a PhD there too people notice. It’s also just not good for you in terms of your training, you are better off mixing things up and learning from different departments.

  24. I have literally never heard it called this. Some academics will frown upon it and it can be hard to establish yourself as a graduate student instead of an undergrad. I’d, at a minimum, work on a different project if not with a different advisor.

  25. It only matters if you stay in academia and even then it's very country dependent. I'm in Canada and not a single one of my professors jumped around that much from their undergrad to masters to PhD to post doc. And look where they're at now.

  26. In my experience the only time it isn’t considered a bad thing is if you’re doing regionally specific work and plan to stay in one region. Mostly in fields dealing with regional history or the environment, and especially if said university is the only major research institution in the area.

  27. It isn’t even a consideration. I did my BS and PhD in the same school system. Started immediately with a 6 fig job in industry. I did more than 30 interviews at 16 different companies. It never came up, not a single time.

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