My second year student is continually giving me trouble. Some of this stems from me being a newbie adviser, but most of it comes from this student being inflexible. I understand that this move effects his life - where he lives, who he meets, where he may get a job later. Hmm let me explain a bit.
His desire is to obtain a PhD from prestigious old U., and to move to the new U. with me. He absolutely refuses to transfer to the new U. He is an international student, and his intention is to go back to his country and work in industry. He maintains that a degree from the internationally recognized old U. is more important than a degree from the new U. (even though new U. is much more highly ranked in my discipline). For all this to happen, he must complete his candidacy exam and register in absentia every semester. The tricky part is funding. My NSF funding for him will run out in his 4th year, and I cannot use start up funds from new U. to pay off my student from old U. I must use external funding. I must obtain a grant for his project (or some related project) in the next year to maintain his funding through his PhD. If I don't... then it gets messy.
Anyways, the student is freaking out because his project isn't working. He reasons that if his project isn't working, then he won't pass his candidacy exam, and we won't secure external funding. I tried to explain to him that this isn't really how academics works, and that he would be just fine. He didn't believe me. I'm tired of babying him and comforting him. Just suck it up already and be professional!
On top of this, he is a So-So student. I often have to ask him to do things twice. He still doesn't take notes during our meetings. His redeeming quality (or fault?) is that he is a perfectionist, so his data is robust and I have confidence in it. So why am I bending over backwards for this student?? Simply put: my doppleganger. If I leave my student behind, my doppleganger will take the student into his lab, scoop the project, and take my research ideas. I know that sounds paranoid, but this doppleganger has tried to do this to others (I finally have evidence). Is it all worth it?