The Doctoral Dissertation Defense and Submission

Doctoral Dissertation Defense at Boston University, March 30, 2015.

Doctoral Dissertation Defense at Boston University, IRB Eilts Room, March 30, 2015. Next to me are my dissertation advisers except for my third reader who attended via video conference call.

On March 30, 2015, I defended my doctoral dissertation at Boston University. Because it was a long-awaited event in my PhD life, I thought of how I would defend successfully, but it just happened. Come to think of it now, having spent two years on the job market, defending the main argument in the dissertation had already become a part of me, as if my brain and my body were programmed to do it.

It was a one-day trip to Boston from my work in DC, and quite horrendous – JetBlue’s computer system shut down across the country just when I was about to check in, and I took off an hour later. I was seriously worried that I would run out of time because there were other things to be taken care of (i.e., library processing fee payment, office hour). Without Uber, the whole trip would have been quite difficult.

The defense was quite lengthy, lasting for about two hours, and I collected all the comments that would be used for dissertation revision process for book volume publication. While I am still in the process of organizing the comments, I am glad that I came up with a question and an answer using logic of my own. However, until I did the final submission on April 13, I did not have any sense of being liberated from grad student status.

I am partly glad that I had already launched a postdoctoral project to keep me going. There was a hollowing in my heart after the final submission, probably due to the biggest and the longest research project that had just been finalized in my PhD career. Revising it into a book will be much more difficult and will require much more work, but for the time being, it is  a done dissertation. The next two years from 2015 to 2017 will be used for my book project.

Post a Comment

Your email address is never shared. Required fields are marked *