John Kerry, the former U.S. Secretary of State, will start an interdisciplinary program on global issues at Yale University, which will include teaching, research and international dialogue.
Kerry will serve as Yale’s first-ever Distinguished Fellow for Global Affairs under the new Kerry Initiative, the school announced yesterday.
The former secretary of state under the 44th U.S. President Barack Obama plans to teach a seminar in his alma mater in the 2017-2018 academic year, as well as to partner with Yale’s scholars and faculty.
Topics that the statesman will collaborate with Yale scholars under the Kerry Initiative will be “failed and failing states and the challenge of authoritarian populism; rising sectarianism and violent extremism; climate change and other environmental threats; and capacity building, global economic opportunity, and development,” according to Yale News.
“We are honored to welcome Secretary Kerry, with his vast insights and experience on global affairs, to lead this exciting new program at Yale,” said President Peter Salovey.
“Having the opportunity to explore fresh thinking with some of the brightest minds tackling these things is really fun and challenging,” Kerry said in an interview. These problems— which he ranked most urgent among them to be climate change, failing states and violent extremism—“need to be solved, and need to be solved faster than we’re tackling them.”
The initiative aims to groom the next generation of global leaders, diplomats and activists.
“I’m grateful to President Salovey for his enthusiasm about what we can do together as a Yale community and how we can empower the next generation of idealists and diplomats and activists to be a part of public service and a cause bigger than themselves,” Kerry said.
Kerry joins the ranks for other former politicians who take up positions in universities after stepping down from public office, such as former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden who will be leading the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement at the University of Pennsylvania, and another former secretary of state, Condoleezza Rice, who is now on the faculty at Stanford University.