The process of becoming a professor can be long and arduous, but if you’re persistent in your work and willing to compromise when necessary, the rewards are worth it.
Earning a Ph.D. in any field of study can be the beginning of an exciting and rewarding career as a college professor. However, before you can take on this important role, there are some important steps that you must first take. In this article, we will explore those steps and provide you with some resources to help you on your way.
First, let’s discuss what a professor is.
What is a Professor?
According to Wikipedia, Professor is an academic rank at universities and other post-secondary education and research institutions in most countries.
Literally, professor derives from Latin as a “person who professes”.
Who is a Professor?
A professor is someone who teaches students at a college or university. They have usually earned an advanced degree, such as a PhD, and have a great deal of knowledge in their chosen field. Professors are responsible for helping students learn and grow, both academically and personally.
Professors are usually experts in their field and teachers of the highest rank. They may also be involved in research in their field.
How to Become a Professor 2023
Here’s are 2 Major steps to become a Professor:
1. Get an Advanced Degree.
In order to become a professor, you must first have an advanced degree. This usually takes the form of a PhD in your chosen field.
2. Participate in Teaching Assistantships or Internships.
After earning your degrees, it is possible to find work as an assistant professor who helps mentor graduate students and offers courses for undergraduate majors on topics such as general education requirements and liberal arts electives. As an assistant professor, it is important to be active in research so that those skills will complement those of the tenured professors where applicable.
It can take years before someone becomes a full professor, or several more years if they are on a tenure track. However, some universities offer the opportunity for professors to go into administration while continuing their research and teaching duties.
Benefits of becoming a professor
There are many benefits to becoming a professor. Perhaps one of the most rewarding aspects is helping students learn and grow both academically and personally. Professors also have the opportunity to be involved in research in their field, which can result in new discoveries and advancements. Additionally, professors often have flexible hours and can enjoy good job security.
Risks of becoming a professor
While there are many benefits to becoming a professor, there are also some risks to consider. One risk is that professors may not always have control over their schedule, which can lead to long hours and excessive work demands. Additionally, professors can face criticism from students, colleagues, and administrators if they do not meet certain standards.
Professor Salaries and Growth Outlook 2023
In relation to the data published by the US Bureau of Labour Statistics, the median salary of a professor across all levels is around $76,000 a year.
The highest and lowest salaries vary to a large extent on the basis of seniority, experience, and your teaching field. This is not to discredit any particular area of learning but it is simply a result of supply and demand for teaching professionals of that field and its commercial applications.
For example, a law professor might earn a median annual salary of $165,000 while an English professor with a certain level of experience typically makes around $88,000 a year.
When it comes to the growth outlook, the future of college professors is bright. Given the increasing number of students all over the world opting for college education and the growing importance of education to secure well-paying jobs, the number of seats and a consequent number of professors is likely to shoot up significantly every year.
The US Bureau of labour statistics believes that growth between 2016 and 2026 for professors will be around 15%. This is faster than the average of all other professions put together, which is phenomenal. Perhaps, this vindicates your decision to pursue a career in academia.
Given the rosy picture depicted above, growth in this profession will not be singular. There will be certain fields where demand for professors will far outstrip the supply, leading to increased compensation levels.
For others, the demand and supply equilibrium will remain balanced, resulting in muted salary growth with limited opportunities.
Frequently asked Questions
How to become a law professor
In order to become a law professor, you must have an advanced degree. This usually takes the form of a JD degree, which is a Juris Doctorate. You must also have a license to practice law in the state where you want to become a professor.
While earning both your JD and LLM, you will need to decide what type of law (or legal field) that you would like to practice or teach in. Once you have your degrees, you will need to gain teaching experience and then apply to various schools. This usually requires that you hold the position of an assistant professor first.
How to become a college professor
There are a few different ways to become a college professor. One way is to first become an assistant professor, which you can do by securing a tenure-track position at a university. As for other routes, there’s teaching at the college or university level or visiting-assistant professor positions at other schools.