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Beto O’Rourke to teach politics at Texas State University next year

Beto O'Rourke
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Former El Paso congressman Beto O'Rourke delivers a campaign speech during his candidacy for the Democratic presidential nomation.

SAN MARCOS, Texas — From Congress to the campaign trail and now to the classroom – former El Paso Congressman Beto O'Rourke plans to teach at Texas State University in the spring.

University officials told ABC-affiliate KVUE that they are finalizing the hiring process and plan to have him teach a class on Texas politics.

According to school newspaper the University Star, O’Rourke will join the department as an instructor teaching a synchronous online class in spring 2021. The university told KVUE the class is PS 4325.

“He originally approached people in the administration... and expressed an interest in teaching,” political science chair Ken Grasso told the University Star. “I was thrilled. He’s got a unique take on things with his experience as a congressman and as [a] senatorial candidate and even a presidential candidate. So we’re very happy to have him.”

O’Rourke, 48, ran a close U.S. Senate race against incumbent Republican Ted Cruz in 2018.

The race propelled O’Rourke to the national spotlight and led to a failed bid for the White House in the 2019 Democratic primaries.

O’Rourke has not publicly addressed the hiring. He’s been campaigning for Democratic candidates across the state in an effort to flip the Texas House.

Texas State University in San Marcos has more than 38,000 students in undergraduate and graduate programs. It is among the largest public universities in the state and has been recognized as a Hispanic-serving institution.

“I don’t know that so much it’s going to increase enrollments; it’ll certainly increase visibility,” Grasso told the Star. “That’s always a good thing. We tend to sometimes get lost in the shadow of other institutions.”

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