Paul L. Caron

Tuesday, March 9, 2021

WSJ: Law Prof Gets Tenure, Then Takes Buy-Out To Switch To Stand-Up Comedy

Wall Street Journal, A Law Professor Switches to Stand-Up Comedy:

Liz 2“It wasn’t like I was Doogie Howser,” Liz Glazer said of her precocious success, but she wasn’t far off. She picked up a master’s degree in philosophy during her four years as an undergraduate, then shot through law school and landed a job at a Wall Street firm before becoming a full-time law professor at age 27. And then, shortly after attaining hard-won tenure, she quit to pursue a life in stand-up comedy. ...

At the University of Pennsylvania, she studied philosophy, writing her master’s thesis on Kantian aesthetics. Ms. Glazer’s mentor, Heidi Hurd, who taught both philosophy and law, gave her a piece of advice: Become a law professor. “The jobs are relatively easier to get than philosophy professorships, and you can teach law and write about philosophy,” Ms. Glazer said. ...

Ms. Glazer joined Hofstra by the following year and came to be known as one of the school’s more entertaining professors. “One of my colleagues said, ‘Whenever I walk by your classroom, laughter is spilling out,’ and I remember thinking, ‘I hope the school doesn’t think that’s a bad thing.’ ” Four years into teaching, in 2009, while on a visiting professorship at Loyola University Chicago, she enrolled in an improv comedy class, a move she likened to signing up for a tennis lesson. “I wanted to do something that was not connected to a goal,” she said. ...

A-ha moment: Ms. Glazer had recently made tenure at Hofstra, but when she came off the stage, she was exhilarated in a way she’d never felt before. When the dean of her law school reached out to lay out buyout packages, she selected one on the spot.

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