The other day, I was having lunch with some of the grad students from my lab and at one point the subject of building up your CV came up. One of the things we talked about was adding leadership opportunities to your CV. Of course, in order to do that, you need to have some leadership opportunities and R was thinking she probably didn’t have any to put on there.
R has been pretty focused on research, to the exclusion of anything else almost, and I think that dedication is what has netted her a first author paper in a first tier journal in her fourth year. Her thought is that doing anything else will hinder her research and she won’t publish as many papers. So, what’s more important, having as many papers as you possibly can, or adding “leadership opportunities” to your CV? And what is it important for? That is, do PIs looking for a post-doc even care about extracurricular activities? Or maybe it’s important for post-doc fellowship applications? Or maybe it’s important when looking at a tenure-track faculty position (I am focusing on a TT faculty position because that’s what R wants)?
You know what? I don’t know the answer. My sense is that employers are going to want to see that you can balance research with other responsibilities. It seems like that would be an important quality for someone going into a tenure-track faculty position. But, how much does what you did in grad school matter when you’re applying for a faculty job, anyway?
What do you all think?