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Author Topic: Nazarbayev University pt. 2  (Read 145107 times)
pittphd2009
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« Reply #75 on: December 15, 2012, 2:18:10 AM »

I had planned to submit an application to Nazarbayev University, but I am concerned about some postings here. Over 4 pages are devoted to issues that revolve around the Dean of the School of Science and Technology. No one has offered any supporting comments on his behalf. Is he still employed there or has he left or been dismissed?

Is the School of Science and Technology a pleasant place to work? Has there been any turnover of faculty?


 How is the School of Engineering and issues? Are they hiring?
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boratnazarbayev
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« Reply #76 on: December 16, 2012, 11:32:47 AM »

Quote
How long usually it takes to get an answer after the interview? One of the authors here had complained that he/she never received a reply from the NU regarding the results of his/her interview. I am wondering if this is a pattern or just an accident.
Any thoughts about this issue?

I wrote the earlier posting. Ten months have passed and I did not hear a single word from the university. Even after my earlier posting in this Chronicle. I have a position in a U.S. university now but I was serious about going to Kazakhstan. That probably reflects the attitude of those hiring in the university. If they feel like they do not want you, they do not need to act with any decency.
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vladislaus
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« Reply #77 on: December 16, 2012, 5:55:52 PM »

Well, three months past since my interview and I did not yet get any feedback from one of the best US universities, despite my emails and calls.  So, I don't think this is an endemic Kazakhstanian phenomena. The job market is low, the employers are overwhelmed by thousands of CVs and they don't care about the people. Unfortunately, I have feeling, that our values are changed.... BWT, I was contacted by the NU administration last week.  I agree with you, boratnazarbayev, it was not nice that they didn't tell you a word.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2012, 6:02:47 PM by vladislaus » Logged
boratnazarbayev
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« Reply #78 on: December 17, 2012, 12:38:51 PM »

Quote
Well, three months past since my interview and I did not yet get any feedback from one of the best US universities, despite my emails and calls.

That was precisely my point. More than half of the interview panel that interviewed me were from leading American Universities. They were supposed to be spreading best practices, and not the endemic bad practices of American Universities. Why should they be paid good dollars otherwise? And I seemed to have made it to the final selection since I had a session with the provost herself. So, I dont think at that point they had hundreds of cvs to deal with. There is no excuse for the indecency and the fact that some U.S universities tend to care less about people they reject does not absolve NU.
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eddean
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« Reply #79 on: December 31, 2012, 11:31:09 PM »

Can anyone comment on the new College of Ed program that is beginning at NU?  Am interviewing and would like others' perspectives.  Many thanks.

How did it go?
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mrsteve
mrsteve
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« Reply #80 on: January 17, 2013, 7:42:23 AM »

Can anyone discuss the contract/negotiating process at NU when a candidate is presented with an offer? Can one negotiate salary, research leave during the summer (say 12 weeks between spring and fall classes plus winter break)?  How about spousal accommodations for PhD couples?
Thanks if you can comment!
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tomsmedley
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« Reply #81 on: January 30, 2013, 8:17:30 AM »

I have an adventurous streak, a shiny new PhD in Communication studies, and a very tight job market here. NU looks good.

I also have a wife and two teenage daughters.

Do the apartments come with broadband, DSL at least?

Thanks
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mrsteve
mrsteve
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« Reply #82 on: January 30, 2013, 9:43:12 AM »

Make sure you realize that you get only 8 weeks off year -- that includes winter and spring break.  Forget summer back home.  I would negotiate that in your contract, as they are fuzzy on how to interpret time away from campus.
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peripatetic
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« Reply #83 on: January 30, 2013, 11:10:22 PM »

I have an adventurous streak, a shiny new PhD in Communication studies, and a very tight job market here. NU looks good.

I also have a wife and two teenage daughters.

Do the apartments come with broadband, DSL at least?

Thanks

I work at NU and am married with children. In our apartment, I have download speeds of 2-3 mb/s. And it is cheaper than in N. America.
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peripatetic
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« Reply #84 on: January 30, 2013, 11:18:13 PM »

Make sure you realize that you get only 8 weeks off year -- that includes winter and spring break.  Forget summer back home.  I would negotiate that in your contract, as they are fuzzy on how to interpret time away from campus.

Virtually all of my colleagues travel home (N. America and Europe) for both Christmas and summer holidays. The only restriction I have heard on traveling home concerned the amount of time spent in the U.S. for tax purposes.
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mrsteve
mrsteve
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« Reply #85 on: January 31, 2013, 10:59:36 AM »

Right, eight weeks of holiday in total for summer and winter breaks.  Not 12 weeks of the summer location of your choice, plus three weeks Christmas, and a week Spring Break like in the US.
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peripatetic
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« Reply #86 on: January 31, 2013, 9:30:13 PM »

Right, eight weeks of holiday in total for summer and winter breaks.  Not 12 weeks of the summer location of your choice, plus three weeks Christmas, and a week Spring Break like in the US.

This claim about NU holidays is incorrect. The university's academic calender can be found on its website.

peri
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scotto703
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« Reply #87 on: February 04, 2013, 6:42:58 AM »

Which part of this posting about holidays and vacation do you consider to be incorrect?  Faculty generally get 12 weeks (56 days including weekends) of vacation, plus national holidays.  Spring break, Fall break, and Christmas are part of this, and are counted against the 56 days.
« Last Edit: February 04, 2013, 6:46:03 AM by scotto703 » Logged
peripatetic
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« Reply #88 on: February 04, 2013, 9:37:16 AM »

Which part of this posting about holidays and vacation do you consider to be incorrect?  Faculty generally get 12 weeks (56 days including weekends) of vacation, plus national holidays.  Spring break, Fall break, and Christmas are part of this, and are counted against the 56 days.

I am distinguishing between official vacation days and time between semesters and mid-term breaks. The original claim - eight weeks off per year - conflated these two. In theory, NU faculty have fewer official days for vacation but they also can spend the breaks doing research and not have it count as vacation. They can also do nothing and not have it count as vacation. So, if it is the case that most academics in N. America do not spend all of their break time as vacation, then the difference is not significant. In practice, both N. American and NU faculty are likely to spend similar amounts of time on research with the rest of the time spent on vacation. One advantage of being at NU is that, with good planning, the university will pick up the tab for travel to those vacation destinations.

peri
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spec1
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« Reply #89 on: February 24, 2013, 5:53:38 PM »

I've read through this thread with great interest, especially since I have just been invited for an interview in DC for a position at the SST at Nazarbayev University.

It seems like it's an interesting opportunity, however I'm still unsure whether it's too good to be true or not. So I have a number of questions to those who have experience with NU.

1) If I do get an offer, will there be an opportunity to actually go to Astana to have a look at NU and the proposed accommodation in person? I would be very hesitant to make a commitment to accept a job somewhere without seeing it first.

2) How detailed is the contract? Are things like teaching load, time off, provision of accommodation, etc, specified in detail? Is the salary fixed in USD? More importantly, do they honor the contract?

3) In the job description, they say that accommodation depends on rank and family size. When I move there I will be married but without children. However we will be planning to start a family, so I wonder if it will be feasible to get a larger apartment once we have a child.

4) Does anyone have experience with health care in Astana? They promise a health insurance, is it any good?

5) Is there any retirement saving scheme? I would suppose this is unlikely in that part of the world, so in that case this should be factored in when comparing to US salaries.

6) How are the library resources? Especially electronic journal subscriptions. Are there any mechanisms to request new subscriptions, etc?

7) I was told during the Skype interview that there possibilities to get grants for travel and other research expenses. Does anyone have experience with this? Just how realistic would it be to get funding to go to a conference or for an extended collaboration trip (a few weeks)?

8) Somebody mentioned earlier that there is limited office space. Is it any better now? There seems to be a lot of construction still going on, so is there a chance of getting individual offices in the near future?


Ok, that's enough questions for now! I would be really grateful to anyone who could shed some light on some of these issues either here on the forum or via a PM.
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