Mid-Career Resources

The following resources address issues and challenges that faculty members may face as they move into their mid-career years.

  • Baldwin, Roger G. "Making Mid-Career Meaningful." The Department Chair 16(2) (fall 2005): 14–16. Reprinted with permission from Anker Publishing. - This article provides insight into mid-career faculty life (post-tenure) through the use of five metaphors which help to tackle questions such as: what are appropriate mid-career goals? What is successful performance at mid-career? What forms of support do mid-career faculty need?
  • Baldwin, Roger, Deborah DeZure, Allyn Shaw and Kristin Moretto, Mapping the Terrain of Mid-Career Faculty at a Research University: Implications for Faculty and Academic Leaders. Change Magazine (Sept/Oct 2008) - This article describes our efforts and summarizes key themes and contested topics for the sake of faculty, personnel committees, chairs, faculty developers, and other administrators committed to supporting their academic colleagues. Although the study's findings and implications may be most relevant to other research universities, other types of colleges and universities may benefit from the methods, insights, and recommendations we offer and want to replicate or build on the processes and practices described here on their own campuses. [description derived from article abstract; subscription needed to access full-text of article]
  • Faculty Retention Toolkit: Encouraging Mid-Career Professional Development - This website offers brief summaries about modes of support for encouraging mid-career professional development, including nominating faculty for awards and addressing mid-level career transitions (i.e. addressing career development, encouraging creativity, and mentoring).
  • Weimer, Maryellen, Mid-Career Faculty Issues Often Overlooked. Faculty Focus (Nov 2008) - This brief article makes a case for studies related to mid-career faculty and provides data from a 1999 study comparing pre-tenure, mid-career, and senior faculty work effort, productivity, and satisfaction. References to related resources are provided.
  • Advice for the PUI theorist at mid-career - This short article provides resources related to opportunities for mid-career faculty, including ideas for institution suggestions for "what to do next," institutions to visit during sabbatical leaves and grant writing resources.
  • Scoring on Sabbaticals - This Tomorrow's Professor posting below gives some excellent tips on how to make sabbaticals more productive and enjoyable. The article is by Elie Dolgin and is from The Scientist: Magazine of the Life Sciences, Volume 23, Issue 8, Page 58.
  • Why Are Associate Professors Some of the Unhappiest People in Academe?, an article from the Chronicle of Higher Education, describes some of the challenges faced by mid-career faculty in an effort to illuminate ways to address them, including faculty support groups, professional development programs, and taking time for reflection.
  • Rebrand Yourself, an Inside Higher Ed essay by Kerry Ann Rockquemore, describes how mid-career faculty can combat 'post-tenure depression' by taking a step back to reevaluate and 'rebrand' themselves and their routine to counteract negative feelings. She provides concrete tips such as mapping one's mentoring network and identifying needs, as well as includes a series of 'weekly challenges' to get started. Her essay on Post-Tenure Pathways provides additional concrete tips and advice and her essay on The Need for Tenured Faculty Members to Have Mentoring further explores the benefits of having a mentoring network.
  • Checklist of Best Practices for Mid-Career Faculty Advancement from Michigan State University's ADVANCE project provides a page-long checklist of ideas for making the most of your mid-career status and provides ideas to help mid-career faculty flourish into the future.