Timothy Dixon, associate professor and coordinator of history and politics at Farquhar College Arts and Sciences, never imagined pursuing a law career until his senior year of college.
Dixon attended the University of the Pacific in Stockton, Calif. on a debate scholarship. While he was in college, Dixon participated in competitive public speaking and debate, which gave him a desire to study and go into law practice.
“The lure of the courtroom was always there for me and I decided that I wanted to practice trial and appellate law,” said Dixon.
After graduating from college, Dixon attended law school at Santa Clara University and received his law degree in 1975.
From there, Dixon worked as a clerk for a judge for a year and then decided to open his own law firm with his college debate partner.
After 14 years, Dixon found that he did not like certain aspects of his job and decided to sell his practice and pursue a career in teaching.
“You are supposed to suspend personal judgment on behalf of the clients,” said Dixon, about his job as a clerk. “ It started to wear on me and after a while I found it more difficult to do.”
Once he left his law career, Dixon attended the University of Alabama where he received his master’s degree in history.
In 2000, Dixon was hired as an assistant professor at NSU and he has loved it ever since.
“I just can’t imagine doing anything else. I don’t make the money that was available in practice, but I am so much happier and I just love my job,” said Dixon.
Dixon said that what attracted him to this job was the nature of the work rather than the place. There was also an opportunity to start a history major at NSU and he wanted to take advantage of that.
He teaches five classes per year including, three on legal research and trail advocacy and two on constitutional history. He has previously taught classes on American history, the history of immigration, the U.S. and terrorism and world civilization.
For students interested in pursuing a career in law or history, Dixon said they should go in with their eyes open and do their research on it.
“There is so much information available now on the Internet, so if you have an inkling of what you want to do, go read about it,” he said. “Take advantage of the opportunities to learn more about what you want to do.”