Demand for higher education in San Francisco is never more evident than information taken from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ job outlook for postsecondary teachers. In the current occupational outlook handbook for postsecondary teachers, between 2012 and 2022, the job market for this career is expected to increase 19 percent. To be able to teach at the college level, a Ph.D. or master’s degree is necessary. Daniel Curzon Ph.D, a retired English instructor at City College of San Francisco, understands the value of a strong background in education, having been the only one in his family to go to college. An award-winning novelist and playwright, Curzon was an early champion of stopping internet hate crimes and has made appearances on national television, radio and print media.

(Photo Courtesy of  Daniel Curzon Ph.D)

(Photo Courtesy of Daniel Curzon Ph.D)

What is your background and education?

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“I am the only one in my family to go to college, let alone get a Ph.D. I have an M.A. from Kent State, and the Ph.D. is from Wayne State University. I grew up in Detroit. My parents were not educated; my mother attended school up to the fourth grade in Tennessee and my father to the seventh grade in Illinois.”

What did you enjoy most about your career as an educator?

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“I enjoyed being able to give informed information, less obvious answers to life’s riddles. There are a lot of things taught to students that are too glib. To be honest, I also loved the short work week and the summers off!”

What advice can you share with students interested in a career in education?

“Being an educator requires listening as well as pontificating. Also don’t sacrifice your integrity for political correctness or simply to gain good evaluations from students. Recent studies show that teachers that are ‘liked’ are not usually the ones who educate their students the best.”

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Randy Yagi is a freelance writer covering all things San Francisco. In 2012, he was awarded a Media Fellowship from Stanford University. His work can be found on