So, after writing the last blog post, futzing, practicing my talk, calling home, saving my talk as a PDF, remembering semi-transparent layers in PowerPoint don’t save properly as PDF, fixing the whole talk again, and then saving the files twice, to two different memory sticks, I headed out to the UPMC. The building itself is one giant interconnected set of hallways, all raised up in the air, and all under construction (apparently), but I got to walk to it through the beautiful botanical gardens (once I got out of an alleyway I inadvertently got myself locked into).
So I arrived at the site of the interview about 20 minutes ahead of time, just incase there was last minute paperwork or anything. It was a pretty nondescript room in the hallway of a geosciences department (from what I could tell), the two other candidates scheduled in the same block as I was were already there waiting. The jury gets a break just before each session, so before we got started they all came out. They were very nice, an represented a broad cross-section in terms of disciplines.
I was the second to go in, I just had to show my drivers license (in case I had sent a ringer in my place), sign a paper, and then I was off. 12 minutes and a couple seconds later I was done. I answered my questions in English, but was able to answer questions asked in French (thankfully). And then, after 15 minutes. . . pouf! Done.
It was strangely anti-climatic. There were answers I wanted to explore more, but obviously, there was one other candidate waiting, and I’m sure the jury wanted to go eat dinner, or just sleep!
So that’s it. In a week or so we’ll find out. Had I applied for other sessions this all would have been more complicated. Section 52, the interdisciplinary (human, nature, climate) section doesn’t meet for another two weeks, so it makes coming for an interview much more difficult if you are not on the Continent. I had intended to apply for two sections next year, but I think I might keep it to a minimum, if I do apply again. It’s very difficult to take this much time away from family, friends and work, even if it is, effectively, work-related.