Vacation Days

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Re: Vacation Days

Postby Suzette Lawson » Thu Nov 29, 2012 8:15 am

I think vacation is incredibly important! I work in a noisy production facility where lots of large scale processes take place. Even though offices are "separated", we still get plenty of background noise when a big run is taking place (frequently). Also, I spend plenty of time on the production floor. Therefore, I take my vacation days, in addition to the paid holidays. I need that time to recharge, and it has nothing to do with me "disliking" my job. It has more to do with my immediate surroundings.

I don't think all early career scientists get to spend most of their time in an office. I've always found being around the hum of equipment to be draining. To the PI/managers who read this-- take it into consideration if all your employees desks are in the lab corners near equipment. I think everyone should have access to break rooms that are at least somewhat sound-proof.

My two cents.
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Re: Vacation Days

Postby David Taylor » Thu Nov 29, 2012 11:00 am

Hi Suzette,

I agree with you 100%. I find that I'm much more effective when I have a private, quiet area to work in. As a grad student/postdoc, I did not have this and I usually found myself distracted or being hammered with junior scientists' questions. Especially at the professional level (postdoc), I believe most, if not all, could benefit from a "home base" away from the lab.
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Re: Vacation Days

Postby H.L.F. » Thu Nov 29, 2012 11:36 am

Where I work, in Scandinavia, PhD students get 25 days of vacation and are expected to take them all. Post docs get basically the same while senior researchers get more vacation. Here, only labs that are run by the state enforce the 37,5 hour work week so we don't generally get comp time for longer days.
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Re: Vacation Days

Postby PT » Fri Nov 30, 2012 8:01 am

I've worked in academia in both the UK and the USA and in industry in the UK and France. In Europe, the norm (in my experience) is to have 20-25 days holiday plus bank/public holidays. (I do have friends who have 42 days holiday + public holidays but their contracts are longer than the 35-40hr weekly standard. Any pleasure they had in describing how they were off on yet another 2 week holiday was tempered by the fact that I didn't have to work weekends and when did, I got time off in lieu.)

It was more of a shock when I worked in the US as I only got 1 day off for every month I had worked plus a few federal holidays and I was not allowed to roll any unused days over to the following year. Needless to say, I looked forward to having time off here more than in anywhere else, just to be able to get away from the lab (and its noise - yes, no official space away from the bench).
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