Academia is a kind of place (institution/job) that teaches me persistence and patience. You have to wait. You constantly wait for something. You might be crazy busy with your current work and deadlines, but you still wait for something to come. You wait for the article revisions. You wait for important emails from people that you hope to collaborate with. You wait for the decisions upon your conference abstracts submission. You wait for meetings. You wait for your collaborator to finish his/her own deadlines to be (finally) able to work with you. You wait, often with fear, for the first contact-class of the course that you have been teaching already for some years. You wait even with a greater fear for the very new course o come that you have just created working overnights. You may even wait for some holidays if you are lucky enough to have them at some point. In my context, you also wait for “pikujoulu” (Little Christmas Party) that happen to be the nicest event with your departmental colleagues.
However, foremost, you wait for the funding decisions to come. Already for eight years my calendar is organized along the deadlines for various funding opportunities. There is a time during the academic year when you know you are not allowed to approach your colleagues, because they are working on grant applications. And then you wait for the decisions to come…
I am personally very terrible with waiting. Maybe this is a cultural thing. I have never learnt to wait patiently in a queue. I am also not going along well with a growing number of rejections. Thus, when the grants and opportunities come to me, they always come all at the same time. To challenge my attitude. And so I got a year-long grant and the two-year post-doctoral position in the Academy of Finland project “WhatsInApp” with Asa Palviainen as project’s PI. Right in time when my persistence run away… along with my patience.