From our over-qualified intern, Sarah. (Congratulations, Sarah!)
I married my husband David on June 28, 2009 in a beautiful outdoor ceremony at Sheldrake Point Vineyard in Ovid, NY! As my PhD advisor likes to remind me, our marriage did not just unite two soulmates, but also two different scientific genres – David is a cell biologist, while I prefer to stick to subjects related to chemistry. It’s funny in a way, because people think that the science is what David and I have in common, but neither one of us really knows much about what the other is doing in the laboratory, except that we support it! 🙂
Still, the “two-body” problem in science has become a HUGE issue as more and more scientists form families outside of their laboratories. Looking for jobs in this competitive job market can become tricky when you have two people’s careers at stake. David and I talk about this all the time, and ask questions like: “Will we be able to secure fantastic jobs for both of us in the same city?” “If not, who makes the sacrifice in our relationship?” “How will we deal with the pressures of working towards our career goals at the same time?” Unfortunately, as we are just newlyweds, I don’t have many definitive answers that I can share. However, Science Magazine published a fantastic column in 2003 detailing the experiences of one couple navigating the (academic) job market together. Though the article is almost six years old now, I think much of the advice still holds up, and I encourage all of my fellow scientific love birds to take a peek at it for advice and moral support. It is possible to make things work, and several companies and universities have made adjustments in their recruiting practices to try to accommodate scientific couples while still maintaining high hiring standards.
Regardless of what the future holds for David and me as we head towards our bright future, it is comforting to know that the future will always be OURS together. We are incredibly happy, and I know we will continue to make fantastic scientific discoveries by day and have tremendous fun by night!
Until soon, Mrs. (but soon to be Dr!) Sarah Chobot Hokanson