The picture painted in your article "Discouraged Job-Seekers Cite Crisis In Science Career Advice" (R. Finn, The Scientist, May 29, 1995, page 1) about grim employment prospects for the new science Ph.D. may be too optimistic. You pointed out that the number of positions for Ph.D. scientists in United States colleges and universities has declined consistently since 1977. You did not consider the very real possibility that the loss of both tenure-track and temporary faculty positions may accelerate and that the university as we know it today may no longer exist in the near future.

Faculty positions in state college and university systems, considering the current mania for downsizing U.S. industry and government, the political mood, and the budgetary problems of many states, are not secure; the 1992 attempt at a mass layoff of 146 professors at San Diego State University might be a harbinger of things to come. The...

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