Ever ready

Beware job postings requiring energy.  Could be a code word for young or we're giving you too much work for one person to do alone.  From Stephen Winzenburg, writing in The Chronicle of Higher Education. 

A Discriminatory Word in Academic Job Descriptions

In an ad, "energetic" could be code for "we are going to overwork you for low pay and expect you to do it all with a smile on your face." The lowest-paying academic offer I ever received was from was a small state institution that used that same word in the description but was combining two formerly full-time positions into one job. It certainly would call for all the energy a faculty member could muster to teach six three-credit courses each semester while also managing the staff of a campus radio station, producing cable-television programming, supervising the student video-editing lab, advising majors, and participating in a major campus committee. 
Some may argue that "energy" is interchangeable with "enthusiasm" or "passion," yet being energetic, by definition, usually implies physical vigor or vitality. I suspect that often the word "energetic" in a job announcement is actually code for "younger" or at least "not older." 
Groups searching for candidates with a lot of energy may be indicating that aging candidates need not apply, ruling out those whose full-time work history starts before the mid-1980s. A committee may be suspicious of receiving a CV from an experienced 50-something professor looking for a new challenge when she may very well be the person best prepared to influence a program. Experience, you see, is often less valued than energy.


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