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David Azerrad has joined Hillsdale College in D.C. HERITAGE FOUNDATION | COURTESY

Hillsdale College in D.C. has hired David Azerrad as an assistant pro­fessor of gov­ernment and research fellow. The hire comes as the D.C. campus con­tinues to grow, most notably with the opening of the Van Andel Graduate School of Gov­ernment this fall. 

Vice Pres­ident for Wash­ington Oper­a­tions and Dean of the Van Andel Graduate School of Gov­ernment Matthew Spalding said Azerrad is a perfect addition to the Hillsdale in D.C. faculty. 

“He’s a good fit all around,” Spalding said. “His aca­demic back­ground is a great fit for us. Plus, his prac­tical work here in D.C. will set the kind of tone we want: a com­bi­nation of strong aca­d­emics and prac­tical knowledge about con­tem­porary pol­itics.” 

Azerrad has teaching expe­rience from his time in graduate school at the Uni­versity of Dallas, and he has also been teaching as an adjunct pro­fessor at American Uni­versity in D.C. While his teaching plans for graduate school are still in the works, he expects to teach a course on “Pro­gressive and Liberal Political Thought” this summer or next fall. Azerrad will, however, be ready to teach a course on “Con­tem­porary American Political Thought” next semester for WHIP stu­dents. 

“I’m really pumped and psyched to teach,” Azerrad said. “To me, there is no com­parison to meeting a young person a few years later who tells you, ‘I still vividly remember what you said and it stayed with me.’”

He will also con­tinue his research and work on clas­sical lib­er­alism, the rise of identity pol­itics, and con­tem­porary American con­ser­vatism.

“He’d very much like to con­tinue that schol­arship in an envi­ronment that’s both friendly and con­ducive to his work,” Spalding said. “He very much wants to teach. He’s a great teacher. He likes being in the classroom, and he’s very excited about teaching Hillsdale stu­dents.” 

In addition to being acquainted with many of the Hillsdale College faculty due to his time in the nation’s capital and at the Uni­versity of Dallas, Azerrad has had his share of Hillsdale College stu­dents come through the Her­itage Foun­dation as interns. He said a running joke is that when he asks interns if they’ve read certain mate­rials, he always has to say, “except for the Hillsdale interns.” 

One of those interns is senior Joshua Waechter. Waechter has main­tained a rela­tionship with Azerrad since his internship with the Her­itage Foun­dation during Summer 2018.

“He is one of the smartest people I’ve ever met and one of the most dis­tin­guished leaders in the American con­ser­v­ative moment,” Waechter said. “He’s going to be a notable addition espe­cially to the Kirby Center and its work in D.C.”

Before Spalding left Her­itage six years ago, he hired Azerrad as the assistant director of the Simon Center for Prin­ciples and Pol­itics at the Her­itage Foun­dation. 

“Hillsdale’s efforts in D.C. are com­ple­mentary to those of Her­itage,” Azerrad said. “I’ve never stepped foot on the main campus, but I feel like I’m coming home.” 

While Azerrad has once again been hired by Spalding, this time he will work under him as a member of the Hillsdale College faculty. 

“I feel that I know the school well, I know the faculty, I under­stand what Matt wants to build here, I see what Larry has been doing with the main campus,” Azerrad said. 

Spalding said Azerrad will be very popular with the WHIP stu­dents.

“He’s got the aca­demic back­ground but he’s got a lot of prac­tical expe­rience in con­tem­porary pol­itics. He’s a great teacher and a dynamic speaker,” Spalding said. 

Azerrad said his involvement in the heart of the nation’s capital has given him a lot of expe­rience that he can offer to stu­dents and help them under­stand the nation in which we cur­rently live.  

“I feel in the last 11 years in Wash­ington, I have unof­fi­cially done a second Ph.D., but in real pol­itics,” Azerrad said. “My goal is to really try and under­stand the American regime as it exists today, and I don’t think there is a blue­print for it.”

Azerrad said he is excited to begin working at the Kirby Center.

“I can’t even begin to tell you how eager I am to come across the street,” Azerrad said. “The hard part of leaving Her­itage is leaving all the good people here, but seeing that I am going to be lit­erally across the street, I’m going to get to see them plenty.” 

Junior Emma Cummins con­tributed to this report.