I am sure that if anyone of you is a PhD student, s/he would have definitely come across the Piled Higher and Deeper (PhD) Comics strip…if you haven’t…you missed out on an intrinsic part of being a PhD student…and if you’re not a PhD student and follow them…I like you :P. (For you who have no idea what I am talking about, you can read about this here).
Well – the reason I am saying all this is that the creator, Jorge Cham, came to UCL! I had come across his strip at intervals during my studies, but at one point when I was feeling quite low, Michael sent me the link and his comic strip is now embedded in my feed list…I look forward to it when I need some laughter…it definitely seems to me to capture what it means to be a PhD student…it also makes me think sometimes…which is not too bad if it makes me view how I am dealing with things!
So did I get to meet him? Of course ;). First off he came to the PhD room in our department to talk to PhD students, possibly to get ideas. However, though we could have given him some, I am not sure it was 100% succesful, mainly as one girl ended up talking about her project for like 15mins or so!…Not the most exciting ;).
Then in the evening he gave a presentation on the ‘Power of Procrastination’, where he built a presentation about life as a Phd student around comics he’s drawn. The comics definitely show an insight into life as a PhD student, however, I wasn’t that blown away by him both times round. Maybe I was expecting this character from out of the comics to come out, maybe I was expecting him to be this very engaging character like I’ve found his comics to be. This didn’t exactly happen…I found him a bit distracted and distant, and relying too much on us just laughing on seeing the comics than anything else. But then, he HAD just gone through the possibility of being deported at the UK border! So I am sure he wasn’t looking at the visit to UK universities in the best of light!