The Academy is Broken Stories

My research didn't fit neatly into a single department

My research in long-range transport of air pollution spanned several domains (atmospheric chemistry, physics, aerosols, remote sensing + scientific collaboration) and was inappropriately housed in mechanical engineering because my advisor started at the university in that department in 197X. At the end of my thesis proposal defense (4 years into my degree), one member of my committee said, "This is not really research and if it is research, we are not the right department." and then he walked out. How does the Academy become more supportive of these new kinds of research and more open to doctoral committees that don't really fit within the expertise of one single department.



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Idea No. 73