Dr. Karen Kelsky’s blog has a fantastic new guest post by Phyllis L. F. Rippeyoung, an Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Ottawa, on the lasting feelings of being an impostor in academia. She discusses her own feeling of being an impostor, even after winning tenure and national recognition for her work, and shares an insight about impostor syndrome that she was given by a colleague:
In talking to a wise colleague, similarly afflicted with this syndrome, she had the most amazing insight that these feelings are a result of our loving what we do. If we didn’t love it, we wouldn’t be afraid to lose it. I also think that suffering from the syndrome speaks to the respect that we hold for the enterprise. Ethically, I don’t want to publish something that might be wrong.
For more information on impostor syndrome please see our professional development series here on the blog or check out the Graduate Center’s Counseling Services for graduate students; Counseling Services has offered workshops on Impostor Syndrome in the past, and they continually offer free short-term individual and group therapy to help work through issues exactly like this.