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Thread: Teaching on the side

  1. #1
    Cyburbian Raf's avatar
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    Teaching on the side

    So I decided to apply for a part time lecture position at my local U. I had a great experience helping students in two design courses this spring (they were doing a project in my muni) and the professor really liked the way i taught and gave comments and advice to advance the project. Was curious if any other cyburbians teach on the side. How time consuming is it? Was the pay worth it? The professor i helped out with provided a letter of rec to the hiring committee and yes, I am also an alum at this U. Just wanted to hear other's experience. Thanks
    Men do dumb $hit... it is what they do to correct the problem that counts.

  2. #2
    Cyburbian DetroitPlanner's avatar
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  3. #3
    Cyburbian wahday's avatar
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    I taught a non-planning related course at the university once and have been asked twice to teach a planning course here where I received my Masters (but was unable due to scheduling – ie. “work”). The non-planning class (in the music department) was very fun, but the pay was not great and as a first time teaching this subject in this setting, I found I did a lot of prep work and class planning that were I a regular teacher I probably wouldn’t have to do as much of. Was it worth it? Pay-wise, probably not the first time out (taking into account the extra work). My hourly pay was probably piss poor. Experience-wise, I thought it was totally worth it on many levels. It was a real challenge! But it was really fun and, if one were heading in this direction, could be totally worth it as far as getting your feet wet and becoming more efficient about prep time, evaluations, testing, etc. I would just expect to put in some good extra hours on this stuff and view it as an experience-builder the first time out. You’ll get some money, too. Just probably not as much as you would hope.

    But I really enjoy teaching and would probably jump at the opportunity again were I asked and I was able to fit it into my schedule (which was the problem before). I regularly go up and present in planning classes when invited by old professors. It’s fun, challenging, and I think the students appreciate hearing examples of planning from the real world.

    If after all that you still want to do it, I say go for it so I can live vicariously through you!
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  4. #4
    OH....IO Hink's avatar
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    I would do it in a heart beat. The problem that the planning profession has is that most of those who teach it are out of touch with the realities of planning. I think it would behoove our profession to have less full time faculty and more part-time "real world" faculty. You would be doing those kids a favor and setting yourself up for a pretty sweet retirement
    A common mistake people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools. -Douglas Adams

  5. #5
    Cyburbian Plus
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    I will say yes if you can manage your time as wahday has expressed.


    Quote Originally posted by Hink View post
    . The problem that the planning profession has is that most of those who teach it are out of touch with the realities of planning. I think it would behoove our profession to have less full time faculty and more part-time "real world" faculty. You would be doing those kids a favor ....
    Side note - that was part of the beauty of my Graduate school experience - Adjuct Profs teaching their speciality, Evironmental Law, EIS, Site Design.
    Oddball
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    No. Just some parts wake up faster than others.
    Broke parts take a little longer, though.
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  6. #6
    Cyburbian dw914er's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Hink View post
    I would do it in a heart beat. The problem that the planning profession has is that most of those who teach it are out of touch with the realities of planning. I think it would behoove our profession to have less full time faculty and more part-time "real world" faculty. You would be doing those kids a favor and setting yourself up for a pretty sweet retirement
    I agree; it's nice to have a good blend of experiences being brought to the table. While PHD professors are good to have, it also helps to have someone working in the trenches giving their thoughts and advise as well.

    I heard that that studio with VDR went well, so congrats! Your scenario certainly seems pretty exciting. Would it make sense to talk to some of the other part time teachers there, and get their input? My senior project adviser, SB, worked full time at his firm, and also would function as an adjunct faculty member/teacher at that school. He isn't from the world of academia, and could probably relate to your situation, plus he's pretty down to earth and has been helpful to me pre and post graduation. Goodluck!
    And that concludes staff’s presentation...

  7. #7
    Cyburbian Plus Whose Yur Planner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Hink View post
    I would do it in a heart beat. The problem that the planning profession has is that most of those who teach it are out of touch with the realities of planning. I think it would behoove our profession to have less full time faculty and more part-time "real world" faculty. You would be doing those kids a favor and setting yourself up for a pretty sweet retirement
    Without pilling on, there is a pretty good discontect between what's being taught in planning and the the actual practice of planning. As an employer, it would be nice to talk to applicants who have an idea of what planning is really about and the skills to do the job.
    When did I go from Luke Skywalker to Obi-Wan Kenobi?

  8. #8
    Cyburbian Raf's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dw914er View post
    I heard that that studio with VDR went well, so congrats! Your scenario certainly seems pretty exciting. Would it make sense to talk to some of the other part time teachers there, and get their input?
    Thanks man.. It went better than expected, and it was great working with VDR in a partnership versus student/professor relationship we previously had. I actually have two other part times as consultants here working on projects and yea, they gave me a thumbs up too
    Men do dumb $hit... it is what they do to correct the problem that counts.

  9. #9
    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    In grad school I took the two dual degree offered real estate classes in the Bus School, which had been taught by a local developer for about 15 years at that point (2001). He was an adjunct and seemed to enjoy it. And since he was a local developer and in the B-school, he had a much more practical point of view.

    I thought about it recently, but it doesn't fit well with a 8-5 job planner job schedule. Now if one was a self employed developer/landlord/consultant, one could probably make it work.
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    Let's not be didactic in this profession, because that is a path to disillusion and irrelevancy.

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