Sunday, January 23, 2011

Another PhD

exactly one year ago i defended my thesis in utrecht, the netherlands, and i was awarded my PhD. for 4 years i worked in a lab, wrote it all down during a few very stressful months and then defended my thesis on the 22nd of january, 2010; pictured above. ooh, i was so nervous! mostly because it was all sooo official! nothing concerning the dutch PhD is official, but the day of your defence.. then suddenly you have to dress up, your family, friends and coworkers are there and you are being questioned for 45 minutes by your supervisor and other doctors/professors (behind the microphones) about your thesis. some questions were not very difficult, some i did not understand at all, like the very first question i got. frankly, i still do not know what exactly the question was (perhaps because of my english? :)). thats the other weird thing; for 4 years, every labmeeting, every discussion, the thesis itself; everything is done in english. but during the defence i suddenly had to speak in dutch when i was being questioned by dutch profs, and english when being questioned by the foreign professors.
in the back you see the audience, around the table all the profs, and in the middle there are my 2 "paranimfen" (wiki; a ceremonial assistant and/or coach in a ceremony), and me standing. i just received my PhD (an enormous diploma that tim later forgot in the restaurant where we had lunch; i was just a big bit angry about that!), and my supervisor is giving a speech...... PhD stands for "doctor of philosophy" and if you want to know why this kind of doctors are called PhD, here is the wiki about that!
ah well.. nothing changed now that i am a PhD, i dont feel different, im not smarter, and my salary is still not very high....

8 comments:

biebkriebels said...

Well, you are a clever woman! Congrats! It must have been nervebreaking to stand there. I like the photo with the soft light and all the paintings, (photo's) at the wall. Did you turn your Tim his neck around when he left your diploma behind?

CaT said...

:) thanks!
tim can tell you about how angry i was, i assume....
its just so funny, you work sooo hard, and you always think about that point; the defence. and then you finally arrive at that point... and well, its not THAT special. yes, it is a rather big ceremony, and a reception and a party afterwards and all... but, somehow, i just felt so weird, and thought "is this it??!" ofcourse, its the 4 years of work that make you a PhD, not that weird ceremony at the end, but you only realize it when you finally did it all.

CaT said...

ah, and each year, approximately 500 people get their PhD at Utrecht University alone..! thats a lot!!

Tim said...

As I am also supposed to be getting a phd I can tell u it's not required to be smart.... But in cat.s case it's true. ..

Tim said...

And yeah she was pissed but it was funny too

Sequim Daily Photo said...

I would be so nervous to be in that situation! That is a great shot of the day.

Steffe said...

Wow, sounds like a tough day jumping between languages in front of all those people. So did you ever get that diploma back?

CaT said...

yes, he had to run back and get it. they were just busy cleaning the table and probably were wondering what that huge thing was... now my parents have it. i think i unfolded it once, it is soo huge! it doesnt even fit under the copy machine!!
it was the first time to have a scientific discussion in dutch, very weird. must have been boring too, for the non-dutch professors, except for their questions in english they had no clue what was being said!