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I've turned down a handful of offers to teach classes at university and I'm about 34 semester credits short of a Bachelor's Degree.

So I guess the land you need to be in is the United States of America, at least in my case anyway. Might be true elsewhere but I haven't tested my luck.

Sounds like an Adjunct position which I hate to break it to you is no where near Professor. You will likely make less than minimum wage, I have seen salaries of $3,000 per class taught, and have essentially no room for advancement.This is a common end point for PhDs that didn't get a Tenure track position and have no other choice.

They weren't. But nice assumptions.

If you aren't a professor and you are teaching classes you are an Adjunct/Lecturer which is a dead end career-wise. Maybe nice as a side gig or when you retire but a horrible position to be in otherwise.

Edit: I actually don't know what you are arguing, I think the point is that you won't get a job as a Professor without a PhD, getting teaching offers is completely different and happen to people in industry without PhDs all the time.

Being a professor also involves doing original research, leading and managing larger research projects, advising and mentoring grad students and publishing original work. Teaching undergraduate classes is just one small part of being a professor, and in many cases the part many professors find the least interesting.

I happen to have more than a handful of peer-reviewed papers under my belt, including some first authorship credits. That's pretty much how I got the offers.

Oh indeed. If your main reason to want to be professor is that you want to teach some classes and publish some papers then there are definitely options to do that via working in industry (depending of course a lot on your field). However if you actually want to be a professor and work full time within the university world, with all the pros and cons that brings, then it's very hard to do without a doctorate.

But I absolutely agree if you 'just' want to be involved with some research projects, publish a bit on the side and perhaps teach a few courses then there are many ways to reach that goal that don't involve becoming a professor.

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