Events / The Rewarding Career of a Small College Professor and How to Prepare for It

The Rewarding Career of a Small College Professor and How to Prepare for It

April 17, 2024
12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
Holden Auditorium, 520 S Euclid, St Louis, Missouri 63110

This event is sponsored by the Division of Biology and Biomedical Sciences

Speaker: Dr. Shubhik DebBurman, Disque D. and Carol Gram Deane Professor of Life Sciences, Lake Forest College

Small liberal arts colleges are uniquely American institutions that provide a powerful and distinctive alternative to undergraduate education in the United States. Deeply rooted in the commitment to small class sizes and individualized attention, they emphasize balanced growth of the whole individual that develop students as scholars. Extremely diverse in approach, culture, and even size, they attract and retain those faculty that prefer this professional environment for their lifelong careers and prepare for it while still engaged in post-graduate training. This fulfilling faculty career requires a complex juggling act between teaching, scholarship, and citizenry, in ways distinct different from that at larger R01 universities. Although teaching is the first priority, achieving tenure and promotion at a small college requires some level of scholarship, and succeeding in the latter is often the major challenge. The expectations for scholarship vary with institution, but may come as a close second. Higher expectations for scholarship often, but not always, comes with lower teaching loads and institutional support for research. How can candidates standout in preparation to get this job and then as junior faculty develop strategies for successful sustainable scholarship in a teaching-centered environment for the longer arc of a fuller career?

This workshop offers two concurrent sessions that will help trainees first understand the career and then the ways to best prepare for it: 1) The Juggler Professor: The faculty career at a liberal arts college” and 2) “How to start, succeed, and maintain a research career at a small liberal arts college”.