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March 29th, 2006


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03:10 pm - Academic Premium?
That was quick. Union Switch & Signal came back with a pretty generous opening offer. About 5 days ahead of schedule.

I've long figured that my talents were (maybe) worth a great deal more than I was paid here, but that I made up for it with work flexibility, tuition benefits, and fun diverse projects. Later, I may put up a protected post giving more details about the delta between what I have now and what I could have. But for now, those of you with opinions about either professional programming or academic jobs... what do you figure the academic flexibility premium is?

The comparison isn't bad, because the benefits look very similar and there is no fuzzy cost-of-living calculations: I would be staying in Pittsburgh.

(5 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments:


[User Picture]
From:qiika
Date:March 29th, 2006 08:32 pm (UTC)
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It's hard to put a price on things like time and academic flexibility.

I admit curiosity to the actual offer from US&S. And what kind of job you'd have.
[User Picture]
From:daemonv
Date:March 29th, 2006 09:04 pm (UTC)
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Its also hard to figure out how much my dependence on being able just "not go to work" is based on not being interested in what I have to do.

It's a programming job, although they've been trying out scrum and rely heavily on UML etc, so it is more architecting than code banging. I hope.
[User Picture]
From:pietro
Date:March 29th, 2006 08:58 pm (UTC)
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How much do you use the flexibility of your current job?

For me, it's a big deal, since I'm trying to make videos at the same time as working, so I end up working very non-standard hours.

Would this be working on stuff like the "real time Optimizing Traffic Planner (OTP) and Next Generation Computer Aided Dispatch System"? Sounds like it could be interesting.
[User Picture]
From:daemonv
Date:March 29th, 2006 09:06 pm (UTC)
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As I mentioned in response to qiika, a lot of the flexibility that I do use may just be apathetic demotivation. When I'm working on a startup, of course, the flexibility is very important. But I am between ideas at the moment, and burned out from a lack of professional experience... which this might be.

Yes, this is a direct placement into OTP. The problem is even more interesting than I had suspected.
[User Picture]
From:zare_k
Date:March 29th, 2006 09:47 pm (UTC)
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I suppose the benefit of academic flexibility depends on what you invest it in. If you're using it to pursue a degree program that could boost your salary and/or professional standing later, or using the time to work on a Cool Project, then it's potentially worth quite a bit. If you're using it to work 2hrs/day and play Warcrack all the rest of the time then, well, not so much. Access to interesting problems and new professional experience could certainly trump academic flexibility in and of itself.

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