The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Why the chicken crossed the road

If students were given an opportunity to spend one weekend with any of their professors away from school, they might expect that a majority of their professor’s  time would be spent either reading or doing additional work in their field of study.

However, many students would be surprised to find any professors thinking less about school than most students.

“Math is not my love by any means,” says statistics Professor Joseph H. Phillips, 54. “I’m fairly good at it, but it’s not what I would spend my weekends doing.”

Statistics Professor Joseph Phillips is known for deciphering statistics and algebra for thousands of City College math students. Photo by Josh Cantu l [email protected]

Dressed in a red tie and white short-sleeve button-up shirt, tucked neatly into a pair of light khaki pants, one could compare Professor Phillips to the famous images of NASA engineers during the Apollo space missions.

Phillips, whose name is often brought up when students ask friends who they recommend for “stats,” is celebrating his 25th year at City College.

“I would describe Professor Phillips as engaging, energetic and enthusiastic,” says Anne Licciardi, dean of mathematics and statistics.“Students know him well. They choose to enroll in his courses because he has a good reputation.”

Phillips says that his job involves more than just being good at math—it’s also about being social.

“There are plenty of people out there that are very intelligent and may be great teachers. However, I find that students
have a higher rate of success when they have a professor that’s entertaining as well,” Phillips says.

It’s no secret, especially with sites like, that students tend to choose many of their courses because their peers have recommended a certain professor.

“Last semester I almost enrolled into a course with a professor who had some pretty bad reviews,” says early childhood development major, Evelyn Marez, 23. “Luckily I looked up all of my professors on www.ratemyprofessor. com or I might not have done as well.”

In addition to his other activities, Phillips has recently finished writing his first textbook, “Elementary Statistics.” Although he is proud of the textbook, he says that he would not go through the grueling process of writing another one any time soon.

A man must be sexually aroused, if he wants to get recover from go now viagra canada free erectile dysfunction. Take vitamin A buy cialis cheap and E with selenium and zinc seriously. Impotence is viagra buy cheap a temporal condition that can effect anyone, at any time. There is no denying that this identical form of generic sildenafil tablets – seems to be the best medicine for males with low sexual problem. “After working 50 or 60 hours a week, then turn around and have to work 10 hours each on Saturday and Sunday, I was just tired,” Phillips says.

Describing himself as a “jack of all trades,” Phillips says he has never wanted to be the greatest anything in life. There are many things that he likes, but he is not interested in devoting all of his time to any one thing.

As a kid, growing up between California and Minnesota, Phillips remembers spending a great deal of his childhood working on the family farm.

“I like getting out and doing stuff,” Phillips says. “I have a 5-acre place now, kind of a small family farm, where I raise pigs and chicken.”

To raise the weight of his hogs quickly, Phillips used statistics, as well as a high protein feed. Phillips has also done statistical experiments with chickens. Through the use of in vitro fertilization he has figured out a way for his chickens to lay not one but three eggs each day.

“By using in vitro, a woman who sends down one egg about every 28 days is given a particular type of hormone. When her menstruation date comes, she is able to send anywhere from eight to 10 eggs at once. Once those eggs are harvested and fertilized, there is a greater chance of her getting pregnant,” Phillips says.

“Using what I learned from in vitro, I can now get a chicken, which normally lay seven eggs a week, to lay almost 18 eggs a week because they’re sending them down faster,” Phillips says.

Although he takes pleasure in doing, as he puts it, “silly little experiments,” working on the farm is not the only thing that Phillips enjoys. Phillips, who is also a product of the California Community College system, American River College for two years before transferring to Chico State, which is where he became interested in teaching.

“I had a professor I liked and whose job I really wanted,” Phillips says.

After four years he received a teaching degree, Phillips taught one year each of elementary and junior high school where he also coached basketball. Although he enjoyed teaching and coaching, Phillips admits that the long hours and low pay were becoming too stressful.

Deciding to leave his teaching position, Phillips enrolled in Iowa State University. Although he was unsuccessful in obtaining a doctorate, Phillips received a Masters in statistics and began teaching at the University of Minnesota where he taught for four years.

Phillips says that he still has fun teaching, and even after 25 years he never gets bored.

“The secret to life is knowing what you like to do and figuring out how to do it,” Phillips says.

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Express

Your donation will support the student journalists of Sacramento City College. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Express

Comments (0)

All The Express Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *