This morning, I did something that I wish I hadn’t done.  My internet research skills are a bit too good, I fear.  As a result, I found out a lot about the person who got the job from last month.

While of course I am not going to say anything to compromise this person’s anonymity, a few things struck me:

  • They picked a white dude.  For a school that claims to champion diversity, this seems like an odd pick.  The department is already half white dudes.
  • He is either ABD or just graduated last month.  This means he has no graduate teaching experience, and this job focused on graduate-level teaching.
  • This person is not a particularly good writer.  He has one publication out, and reading it gave me a headache.
  • He has only one or two conference presentations, and none at highly regarded national conferences.

To be honest, I don’t know what to make of this.  My credentials are obviously stronger, and I promise that I didn’t do anything weird or unsavory during my campus visit.  I see more and more that maybe I just don’t have what people are looking for.  I feel like I did everything I was told and did everything right, but it just wasn’t enough.

I realize that playing the comparison game can get ugly and unproductive really quickly.  That said, I feel like I need to see what it is that distinguishes these people from me so that I have a prayer of ever getting a real job.  What am I missing?