Bill de Blasio to teach at NYU next year

The former New York City mayor will deliver talks and teach a graduate course in the spring as part of his new role as a visiting fellow at the university.


Jemima McEvoy

FIle photo: Bill de Blasio speaks at the NYU College Democrats’ “NYC Youth Rise Up Panel” in the Kimmel Center for University Life on April 26, 2017. (Jemima McEvoy for WSN)

Abby Wilson, News Editor

Bill de Blasio, the former mayor of New York City, is set to start teaching at NYU in January. De Blasio will teach a graduate-level course and participate in university events in his new role as a visiting fellow at the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service.

This spring, he will teach a course titled “Topics in Public Policy: How Policy Gets Made – Effective Strategies at the Intersection of Government and Politics.” According to Wagner dean Sherry Glied, the course will feature leaders who played a role in de Blasio’s administration and cities across the country. Glied said that the politician is eager to meet members of the NYU community.

“Bill de Blasio’s presence offers students, faculty and graduates an incomparable opportunity to learn from someone with enormous experiences and many hard-won successes in the political arena and in policymaking and management,” Glied said.

Before his decades-long career in public service, de Blasio graduated with an undergraduate degree from NYU in 1984. Although he said he never imagined that he would return to his alma mater, he is looking forward to working directly with students at Wagner.

“Now I get to help others develop their dreams,” de Blasio said. “I’m truly excited to work with the next leaders of NYC, and the nation, who are getting a top-of-the-line preparation for public service at the Wagner School. My job is to encourage and support this extraordinary group of students.”

De Blasio is a visiting fellow at Harvard University this semester, and will join NYU as a Marnold Visiting Fellow for one academic year. Glied said that the award, created in memory of public health administrator Arnold Schwartz, is given out “very sporadically.” Edward Koch, another former New York City mayor, was awarded the fellowship in 1989.

He became the city’s 109th mayor in 2014 in a landslide victory. He went on to serve a second term, before ceding the position to Mayor Eric Adams in January of this year. 

The former mayor announced that he would run in New York’s 10th Congressional District in May, but dropped out just over one month before the primary election in August after his candidacy failed to gain traction. The long-time politician announced that he was going to instead move on from electoral positions.

“It’s clear to me that when it comes to this congressional district, people are looking for another option and I respect that,” he said on Twitter following his concession.

After graduating from NYU, de Blasio earned a master’s degree in international and public affairs from Columbia University. Two years later, he became a volunteer coordinator for David Dinkins — another former New York City mayor. De Blasio worked with Dinkins’ administration before becoming a regional director in the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and soon left to manage Hillary Clinton’s senatorial race in 2000.

Before his eight-years as mayor, de Blasio was a board member at a public school in Brooklyn. The native New Yorker also held a seat on the New York City Council for eight years, and served as the city’s Public Advocate.

Contact Abby Wilson at [email protected].