Jennifer Scott, Member Services Officer, Simon Fraser University Faculty Association

Jennifer Scott, Member Services Officer, Simon Fraser University Faculty Association

BY: Catherine Nygren

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Jennifer ScottFor her PhD in English, Jennifer worked on authorship and the transatlantic economies of John Galt’s literary circle, 1807-1840. Generous internal and external scholarships funded her degree, which she supplemented with positions as a teaching assistant, research assistant, and Teaching Support Staff Union organizer. She also appreciated the opportunity to teach a course related to her dissertation, though it was a challenge to balance the extra work with her preparation for her thesis defence.  

Her dissertation was supported by exceptional mentors: her committee helped in all areas of her research, including not only reading and writing, but also introductions to other scholars in her field, aid with book reviews, and advice on conferences. In turn, Jennifer informally mentored other people in the program, and still feels like part of a community.

Jennifer finished her degree in seven years. This amount of time—which included a year of maternity leave—was right for her, and her committee supported her throughout the completion of her degree.

Following her defence, Jennifer worked briefly as a sessional lecturer, but quickly moved to being the Member Services Officer for the Simon Fraser University Faculty Association. The position builds on her experience working for the Teaching Support Staff Union, and Jennifer still finds her PhD skills extremely relevant as well: she is familiar with the university system, understands the pressures of academia, and excels at public speaking and facilitation. She also continues to present at conferences and publish within academia, developing her own research.

Jennifer wishes that the state of the job market had been underlined properly when she began her degree. Some aspects of her program had potential, but were under-utilized; for example, the professional development course needed more focus, and more connections—perhaps even a co-op program—with Simon Fraser’s publishing program would have been a unique opportunity.  


[For another interview with Jennifer on her alt-ac experience, see her alumna profile at sfu.ca!]

Jennifer ScottFor her PhD in English, Jennifer worked on authorship and the transatlantic economies of John Galt’s literary circle, 1807-1840. Generous internal and external scholarships funded her degree, which she supplemented with positions as a teaching assistant, research assistant, and Teaching Support Staff Union organizer. She also appreciated the opportunity to teach a course related to her dissertation, though it was a challenge to balance the extra work with her preparation for her thesis defence.  

Her dissertation was supported by exceptional mentors: her committee helped in all areas of her research, including not only reading and writing, but also introductions to other scholars in her field, aid with book reviews, and advice on conferences. In turn, Jennifer informally mentored other people in the program, and still feels like part of a community.

Jennifer finished her degree in seven years. This amount of time—which included a year of maternity leave—was right for her, and her committee supported her throughout the completion of her degree.

Following her defence, Jennifer worked briefly as a sessional lecturer, but quickly moved to being the Member Services Officer for the Simon Fraser University Faculty Association. The position builds on her experience working for the Teaching Support Staff Union, and Jennifer still finds her PhD skills extremely relevant as well: she is familiar with the university system, understands the pressures of academia, and excels at public speaking and facilitation. She also continues to present at conferences and publish within academia, developing her own research.

Jennifer wishes that the state of the job market had been underlined properly when she began her degree. Some aspects of her program had potential, but were under-utilized; for example, the professional development course needed more focus, and more connections—perhaps even a co-op program—with Simon Fraser’s publishing program would have been a unique opportunity.  


[For another interview with Jennifer on her alt-ac experience, see her alumna profile at sfu.ca!]

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