Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair will teach at Yale University in the next academic year starting in September, leading a course on “faith and globalization,” the Ivy League school said on Friday.
Yale, the alma mater of U.S. President George W. Bush, said Blair had been appointed Howland Distinguished Fellow, a post that dates to 1915 and which has been occupied by such notable individuals as former Indian Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and journalist Sir Alistair Cooke.
Blair, a part-time international envoy for Palestinian economic development since he stepped down last year, will also participate in other events at the New Haven, Connecticut, campus, where he will teach the half-year course, Yale said.
He also plans to set up the Blair Faith Foundation, based in London, before taking up his teaching post, the university said.
The foundation aims to examine the role of religion in the modern world and to promote understanding among Christianity, Judaism and Islam.
“As the world continues to become increasingly inter-dependent, it is essential that we explore how religious values can be channeled toward reconciliation rather than polarization,” Yale President Richard Levin said.
“Mr. Blair has demonstrated outstanding leadership in these areas and is especially qualified to bring his perspective to bear,” he added in a statement.
-Blair, 54, became leader of Britain’s Labour Party in 1994. Three years later he became prime minister and remained in that role before stepping down last year.
-Yale is the third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States and is a member of the Ivy League.