A Career as a College Professor

A career as a college professor will involve working in universities and colleges in order to educate adult students within a specialized field of study. College professors are considered experts in their field and often participate in research projects and the development of special programs within their university. During their career, they hold lectures, teach classes and serve as a resource for the entire student body. Many college professors also serve as a mentor for students who are completing advanced degree programs as well as other professors who have recently joined the staff. Because of the high level of responsibility and expertise that is required for a position as a college professor, they are often given a place of honor within the communities in which they teach.

Degrees and Experience Needed

College professors are expected to be an expert in the field in which they teach. Therefore, they will hold a degree in a specialized field of study. The type of degree that is required to become a college professor will vary according to the college or university’s policies. However, a master degree is usually required for a professor at a community college. Universities and other places of higher education will require their professors to hold a PhD. Additionally, many colleges and universities will enable a college professor to enter their programs as a part-time instructor and progress in their career as they prove their experience as a college professor.

How Much Does a College Professor Make?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a college professor’s salary can begin around $62,000 and increase to over $100,000 a year. The differences in a college professor’s salary are related to the geographic region in which they teach as well as the type of school and program that they work within. Additionally, many schools offer their professors special packages such as access to research laboratories and sabbaticals for research purposes. These packages can add up to a substantial amount of compensation over time. Because college professors are considered experts, many also publish books and other literary works that can lead to further increases in their income.

Future Prospects

With the currently increasing rates of enrollment at colleges and universities, a career as a college professor can be an excellent place to find employment. The rates of employment for college professors are expected to continue to increase over the next decade. Additionally, college professors in upcoming fields such as technology and health care can expect to continue to see high rates of employment and salary increases throughout their career. Although some schools may need to reduce their teaching staff occasionally, college professors often experience job security through tenure programs at their university. College professors who choose to branch out in their career can also work as writers, public speakers and researchers while also maintaining their career as a college professor. Over time, college professors can expect to continue to deepen their understanding of their field in order to stay current on the latest research and techniques to teach in their lectures.