The World after Academia is no Black Hole
|CERN Alumnus Thibaut Mueller
Current Job: Project Manager in a management consulting company in Geneva
At CERN from 2009 (Undergrad, PhD student) to 2014 in ATLAS working on searches for new physics.
Leaving academia may be daunting and you might feel frustrated when it happens because you feel as though you have somehow failed. “When you are at CERN you are in full-immersion in research and you might feel that this is the only option you have for your career, as you have been taught from the start of undergrad” says Thibaut. “But this is not true. You can be confident, everything is going to be fine!”
Thanks to the multiple skills they develop during their career in research, scientists can offer a wealth of potential for the world outside the boundaries of academia. “In research, particularly at CERN, you learn a structured way of thinking about problems and solving them in teams that can be applied to a large variety of other fields and companies know this!’ he says and he continues: “Do not limit yourself to thinking only in terms of becoming a data scientist or a hedge fund quant. The number of options you have is much larger”.
Having CERN on your CV can help you make the big leap. “CERN is such a well-respected institution worldwide that many of my current clients give me a lot of upfront trust just because I have been at CERN! It is a quality mark that will certainly help you outside the Lab,” says Thibaut. It was also not lost time: “I look back on my time here with fondness, as a place where I had a lot of fun and learned a lot and then moved on. I would certainly do it all over again – but I would also leave again.”