Reading the feature on the summer habits of academics, I thought that it must be nice to be an academic able to work at home or at the beach and go on (genetic material sharing opportunity) conferences and the like, while the rest of us continue to support the postgraduates working through the summer in research departments (“Summer working, had me a blast”, Features, 11 August).
The stress of working during the “summer break” to make sure everything is in place to please the new students to ensure continued high “student satisfaction” affects lots of “other” staff, and some academics who are specialists in the likes of computer science – no quietening during the summer for them. Work-life balance – don’t make me laugh! Human resources will assist in driving the wage slaves to the brink, too often at the behest of managers with little training and even less compassion, to get the place ready for fresh meat week. The days of enjoying the job and summer recess are long past, and don’t get me started on the pre-sessionals for the extra income that is now so important to cash flow.