The Doctoral Level Cultural Dance

The Doctoral Level Cultural Dance

The other day, in our Post Doctorate Network zoom support weekly meeting, one of our members raised an issue that they are having with friends and colleagues since they have earned their doctoral credentials. Their close friends and family, people who knew them before they started their doctoral program are now accusing them of being arrogant, putting on air, and calling them "Doctor" in a condensing tone. In other words, their familiar support system is now rejecting them.


My response to him was to say "...I really understand what you are saying, I noticed the same type of treatment when I finished my doctoral degree. But you know what? I felt isolated because I was educated to a level of which 90% of the people I represent (people of color) had no clue of the work it takes to write a dissertation and complete a doctoral program. I also felt isolated from the majority population in the ivory towers, who only knew about the people I represent from statistics and books, not from first hand knowledge.


It took some time but I came to realize that my doctoral training changed me in a good way. I see things through a different lens. Although, I can relate to family and friends, I have learned not to bring my research or ivory towers work into our conversation. I also am careful not to bring topics I discuss with family and friends into discussions with colleagues. In a sense it is like a cultural dance, with me being couched between two cultures that do not blend well together.


What are your thoughts on this topic?

Dr Nancy

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About the Author

Nancy Greer Williams



Journal of Leadership Studies-Symposium Piece-Relational Leadership: Perspectives of Key Constructs on Diversity, Inclusion, and Social Equity in Higher Education

Psychology Today
Blog Posts Published


American Psychological Association Conference-Utilizing Clinical Hypnotherapeutic Intervention with CBT to Treat Pandemic-Aug. 13-2021 Symptomology

ILA Conference Geneva Switzerland 2021
Presenter -Topic-"The Stress Arc in Leadership and 3 Powerful Disciplines for Mitigating Major Stress Impacts in a New Era"-Upcoming
Presenter -Topic-“Improving Higher Education’s Role in Diversity and Social Equity through Relational Leadership in the New Era”-Upcoming
Presenter-Topic-"Healthcare Leadership-Using Virtuous Leadership in Chaos to Reimagine Beneficial Practices of Employee Cognitive Psychology"-Upcoming
2021-Knowledge Without Boundaries National Summit-College of Doctoral Studies Research Conference-University of Phoenix-Panel Discussion-"Exploring Emergent Trends in Leadership and Education"-Based on published symposia article from the Journal of Leadership Studies-


Nancy Greer-Williams
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