5 Fictional Professors We Wish Were Real


Having trouble separating fact from fiction? Join us in imagining which fictional professors we wish we could learn from.

Professors have a noble profession, having studied for years and years, climbed to the top of their fields, done research, published books and papers… all on top of dealing with college students on a regular basis. We definitely recommend you appreciate your real-life professors, but that doesn't mean it isn't fun to imagine what it would be like to be taught by some of the coolest educators in fiction. Here are our picks for the top five fictional professors we wish were real.

A cat with glasses, representing Minerva McGonagall

1. Minerva McGonagall

Professor Minerva McGonagall of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry is one tough cookie, both in the Harry Potter books and the movies. Why do we love her? Let us count the ways.

  • She's intelligent, intimidating, and doesn't take anything from anyone.
  • She can turn into a cat. Enough said.
  • There's a reason she's the Head of Gryffindor House. McGonagall has no shortage of bravery, having stood up to one of the most terrifying tyrants of all time, Dolores Umbridge. Not to mention she led the resistance against Lord Voldemort during the Battle of Hogwarts.
  • She was a talented Quidditch player who remains able to spot fresh talent.
  • She's a feminist who proudly kept her own last name after marriage.

We could go on, but we'll spare you. We think we've made our point.

2. John Keating

The beloved English teacher from the film Dead Poet's Society, portrayed by Robin Williams, remains one of the most moving educators ever put on screen. His passion, bravery, and energy make us want to learn from him. He encouraged authenticity and iconoclasm in the face of stuffy tradition, famously urging his students to 'carpe diem,' or seize the day. He inspired them and he certainly inspires us. O Captain, our Captain.

John Keating inspired students to stand on their desks in support of him

3. Vivian Banks

You might remember Vivian Banks as Will Smith's aunt in The Fresh Prince of Bel Air. But do you remember that, despite dropping out of high school as a teenager and working menial jobs, she went back to school to earn her GED and, ultimately, her PhD? That's right, the vivacious, unflappable Aunt Viv is a professor of Black History and Literature at UCLA. We don't know about you, but we'd take one of her classes any day.

4. Peter Venkman

Peter Venkman is Bill Murray's iconic ghostbuster character from, well, Ghostbusters. He's got a PhD in both psychology and parapsychology, which means that he's more than qualified to bust ghosts. And, that, he does. Could you imagine if you found out that your Psych 101 professor freelances as a ghost hunter on the side? Would you freak out and immediately sign up for all of his other courses? We would.

Vampire hunting implements

5. Abraham Van Helsing

What's cooler than having a ghost hunter for a professor? How about a vampire hunter and Dracula's nemesis? Abraham Van Helsing is perhaps one of the most famed vampire hunters in pop culture (other than Buffy Summers). He's a PhD (and an MD, Litt.D., etc., etc., but who's counting?). We're not sure what kind of classes he taught before shifting focus to being the archenemy of the world's most notorious vampire, but whatever it is, we're in.

What professor would you be most excited to learn from? Tweet us @studydotcom and let us know.

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By Daisy Rogozinsky
August 2018
college college life

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