(JACKSON, Miss.) -- Mayor Harvey Johnson plans to return to his love of teaching next month as he joins the faculty of Jackson State University. Johnson, along with university officials, will make the announcement at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, June 21 in the College of Business.
Beginning July 1, Johnson will serve as a distinguished research fellow with the Mississippi Urban Research Center (MURC) and a visiting professor teaching a seminar in urban economics. The seminar will be open to all students at the university.
This is not the first time Johnson has taught at JSU. In the 1980s, Johnson taught graduate courses in the JSU's Public Policy and Administration department.
"I've always had an interest in trying to let students know there is some reason for learning what they are learning," said the two-term mayor. "Teaching is my way of trying to provide practical viewpoints of what students are learning from their textbooks."
Johnson hopes to pass on to the students an appreciation of community service and an idea of how government works. "It is a little different than most people think," said Johnson, Jackson's first African-American mayor.
Glenda Glover, dean of JSU's College of Business, said Johnson’s background in government makes him a valuable resource for the university and its students.
"He is an experienced professor having taught at JSU for a number of years," Glover said. "We are pleased to have the students benefit from his knowledge and experience."
Not only does Johnson's experience make him a great addition to the faculty, but his passion for community service and knowledge of the community make him a great asset, said JSU President Ronald Mason Jr.
"Jackson State University is proud to have someone of Johnson's caliber join our family," said Mason.
Johnson could not be in a better position. Maybe if he teaches others about urban development, they will want to do it themselves here in Jackson. I would love to be a fly on the wall during one of those seminars!