Name: Kara Cerveny
Job: Assistant Professor of Biology at Reed College (formerly: Editor at Cell)
Source: The Node [original post from June 2013]
Now, after completing my first year as an assistant professor of Biology at Reed College, I’m offering proof that lane changes, U-turns, and detours can lead you back to the ivory tower. Many people suggested that I wouldn’t be able to come back to academia when I chose to accept an editorial job at Cell, and I had every intention of sticking with my chosen path of scientific editing. After almost a year of sitting at a desk in an office that didn’t smell like acetic acid or freshly poured LB agar, a niggling feeling kept telling me that something wasn’t quite right. A few soul-searching diary entries, a couple of personality type indicators, and many conversations with friends and mentors helped me discern exactly what that feeling was trying to tell me. Scientific careers can follow many different trajectories and sometimes the “best fit” path is not always the easiest or most logical choice.