To Be Conditionally Unaccepted: When You Are Denied Tenure

This post by Dr. Stephanie Buckhanon Crowder (@stepbcrowder) echoes so many of the thoughts, feelings I had when I was denied tenure.

Although I was upset, I was also relieved. Living in a college town in the middle of a state that just passed some major discriminatory laws took its toll on me, and I chaffed frequently when I heard other faculty speak.

I lied about who I was; I overlooked comments that were unacceptable and I lost some of myself during those years, all in the name of making tenure.

Being denied tenure has taken me to the edges of one of the most remarkable cities in the world, opened doors I never expected to be open and given me a rare opportunity to switch careers in mid-track.

Given the bleak funding levels, especially for those of us who are no longer ESIs, only reinforces my choice. I was tired, tired of banging my head against the wall every day to fit in, to secure funding, to be successful.

Instead, I forged my own idea of success, and I haven’t looked back!

Great post, Stephanie!

Conditionally Accepted

crowderRev. Dr. Stephanie Buckhanon Crowder (@stepbcrowder) is the Director of Theological Field Education at Chicago Theological Seminary (full biography at the end).  In this guest blog post, Dr. Chowder reflects on the painful experience of being denied tenure, but also on bouncing back, and even seeing the “silver lining,” in this (temporary) professional setback.  She offers some tips for other scholars who have been denied tenure to remain resilient.


To Be Conditionally Unaccepted

“Isn’t it crazy how the world tries to make us ashamed of so much.” I heard this recently from someone describing shame emanating from unexpected health challenges. Things beyond our control can so quickly become a source of embarrassment. Pride, professional expectations, and pretention easily spiral to chagrin. When plans do not go, well, according to plan, it is common to press the “shame on you” default button. Discussing success is the academy is…

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