PhD – the Higgs Blackhole
Rumors have it that many PhDs dropped out after years (often 7+) of taking data as individual student’s data weren’t sufficient to claim a discovery or publish significant papers. Those data however, eventually led to the tentative discovery of Higgs Boson. PhD students contributed, yet they couldn’t finish their degree and their career, and dreams (if that means something) vaporized and went into a black hole – never to be seen again.
The above scenario isn’t specific to this specific research institution (CERN) or to the specific discipline (physics). This is actually the saga of the process of PhD. Statistically, more than 50% of the students who enrol in the program, drop out, before finishing the degree. 95% of the remaining 50% can’t do anything in academia. Many go into Postdocs as they seem to be afraid to leave the known life in academia. This again proves to be another nail in the coffin of his/her career. As the PhD is just delaying the inevitable that he wont get a job outside of academia.
If the need for career isn’t obvious to you, note that, even the smart professors did go through tenure track process and fought for their jobs. Now, they pretend that, they never had to fight to get their job. It’s an illusion and a deliberate deception.