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Career Story: Geology Professor And Part Time Farmer

Geology Professor And Part Time Farmer

Job Title: Geology Professor

Type of Company: I am an adjunct professor of Geology at Framingham State College ( i.e. part time retired yet still teaching)

2/3 faculty

Education: BS English Boston College •• MEd, Boston State College •• CAGS, Boston State College

Previous Experience: 35 teacher in secondary education (25 years High School and 10 years Middle School)

Job Tasks: I teach part-time at a state college, two classes of undergraduate science for non-science majors that fulfill their requirement in the pursuit of their degree. I teach Geology and enjoy it. We cover mineralogy, petrology, geophysics, structural geology, plate tectonics. The class does not have a lab period attached to it BUT we do mini-lab activities during each session with a total hands-on approach to learning. The students enjoy the class as we do drawing activities in the paleontology unit and also in the rock unit. We include a component focusing on the National Parks and the unique geology of each park. A required paper allows each student to follow and individual interest area related to Geology. We do a special two units on Glaciology of New Hampshire and the Geology of Cape Cod. I feel that it is important to understand the regional geology of your own backyard so to speak. The class has one field trip each semester to the Natural History Museums at Harvard University in Cambridge Massachusetts. The evaluation of student performance is accomplished through five unit tests, class activity participation and the final examination.

Separate from part time college teaching I own and am learning to run a 68 acre hay farm in Belfast, Maine. I purchased a few Farmall Tractors older generation and a hay baler, hay rake, hay tedder, and two hay wagons and am enjoying the idea of being a part time farmer.

Wrestling with a bale of hay is as challenging as teaching and coaching ice hockey for twenty five years but it is a lot less demanding. The biggest trial is to get the hay baled and in the barn before it rains. Ah, the weather is so important in harvesting a hay crop.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: I enjoy my subject Geology and find college student interesting bright and caring and I find that it is great to see them get a concept and do a class activity with keen interest.

As always grading and reports are important yet often tedious and time consuming.

Job Tips:
1. Be ready to do some paperwork if you intend to teach a good course

2. Do not get upset or overly concerned when a college student skips a class or two.

3. Keep your discussions with college student light and focused on the curriculum.

4. Remember that most of your students are not Science Majors yet they want to learn new things that are interesting.

Additional Thoughts: 1. Do not expect to get rich if you become an adjunct professor of geology in a state school.

2. Remember that college student are often holding down near full-time jobs or 2/3 part time jobs to help defray tuition costs and expense money.

3. Do not forget to interject some humor into what most students perceive to be a dry subject and take the time to prepare interesting lessons.

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