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  • Children of Eden written by Joey Graceffa
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Professors do more than teaching, grading

Although students see their professors only a few times each week, grading papers and teaching classes are not the only parts of the job.

Committing to a full-time position as a professor at the University requires heavy research, publishing articles and being able get students to understand the teaching material. However, interviewing for the job is a different type of commitment.

Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences Simon Morgan-Russell said when candidates apply for a certain position and are selected to be interviewed, it involves a two-day process of evaluation. The interview highlights how they’re dressed and communication skills to how well the person can teach a class.

“If they can communicate to me effectively what and how they teach their subject and I can understand it, then that indicates they’re probably a good teacher,” Morgan-Russell said.

After securing the job as a full-time faculty member, the type of work to be completed is applied to however the professor wants to start.

Chair and Professor in the Department of Psychology Mike Zickar said the work schedule is flexible but they serve as their own motivators.

“It’s all on you,” Zickar said. “The assumption is you’re going to do the work you’re asked to do.”

Professors work for a few years before they are promoted to the tenure contract, which secures their position and means they will not be able to lose their job without a reason.

John Hoag, senior associate dean for the college of Business, said when professors start the job, they are evaluated after three years to see if they are doing research and what else they are committing to the profession. Six years need to pass before the department will promote the professor to a tenure contract if it makes a decision for the professor to remain at the University.

Although some professors work 50 to 60 hours a week, to some it is worth the time put in to complete daily tasks.

Professor in the Department of Sociology Gary Lee said it’s a consuming job.

“The research we do is very difficult,” Lee said. “Our best journals reject more than 90 percent of articles submitted. You need to [put in time] to be successful.”

After putting in time, energy and dedication to the profession, it may seem that getting burned out is difficult to avoid, but for many the profession serves as a passion to keep working at.

Louis Katzner, professor of philosophy, has been working at the University since 1969. Even though he is past his retirement, he can not stay away from teaching students about philosophy.

“Philosophy is my life and it’s something that I really enjoy,” Katzner said. “When I walk into a classroom, I’m really excited. When the light bulb goes on in a student’s eyes and as you read their work, I find that a very rewarding experience.”

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