Teaching as an adjunct can be a lot of fun. It is also challenging. As I have encountered a number of situations, I realize such a blog can be helpful, both to me and to others.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007


My father taught as an adjunct professor for over 30 years. He had quite a following. He also had numerous degrees he had earned, many of which carried certain titles. Any were appropriate. Still, he used to tell his students if they wanted to make him feel smart, feel good, put him in a good mood before grading, they should call him ‘Professor’. When he first told his students this, he was not a full professor, although ultimately he was able to get the degree, despite being an adjunct.

I have a slightly different relationship with my students. I am on a first name basis with them, they can call me by my first name. This is something my father never would have done. Still, while I do not have any such degree, there is always a rewarding feeling when some of your students call you professor. I, of course, am not a professor. I think my rank is adjunct lecturer, but I am not even sure.

While I tell my students that they can call me by my first name, I also know that some of them are more comfortable calling me by my last name, or using a title, and I am fine with that. In fact, like my dad, sometimes I find it feeding my ego.

In fact, when I was interviewing for the full-time position (still no word) at campus, as I was getting a tour, a former student passed me in the hall and said, “Hey professor … , how are you?” That could not have been timed any better or more perfectively. It was a nice feeling and one that may help to earn me a position.