Not discussed

That’s the “impact score” I’ve been waiting for since the study section met last week. My K grant was not even discussed, unscored, triaged. 😦 Now, I knew this grant wouldn’t get funded. I was aware of its weaknesses immediately after submitting it (not enough publications, not enough preliminary data, too narrow a model, etc). But I thought it was decent enough to at least get discussed.

So this is what it’s like to be competing at this tier of scientific talent. My immediate reaction – a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach, then a slight urge to cry. Was it really a terrible grant? Was it written horribly? Were the reviewers frustrated wading through the pages? And the million dollar question – should I just give up and leave academia now?

I know I can’t take it personally, and I won’t know what the reviewers thought until the “pink sheets” show up in a few weeks. So for now, all I can do is put it out of my mind (once again) and wait. I’ve got to toughen up – I’m sure I’ll go through this time and time again as a scientist; this won’t be the last disappointment. It’s time to suck it up and start getting prepared for the re-submission.

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3 thoughts on “Not discussed

  1. condolences. I'll add to the voices telling you that even deep into the triage zone there are *always* a ton of really excellent proposals. The competition is just that strong. but, I sat in your position at one point and I never really believed the older PIs telling me this :-). Until I started reviewing and saw for myself the quality that had to be triaged. Hope the summary statement has a bunch of easy fixes!

  2. DM: Ha! Too late!

    And thanks for the comment. 🙂 I kind of understand the good company, especially with all the great researchers I know also getting triaged. But I'm also just used to being at the top of the pile. I've known for a while that a gut check is important for this business. You just don't really get it til you experience it…

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