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Outgoing Columbia mayor headed to Harvard for fellowship

Jim Clyburn,Steve Benjamin
Meg Kinnard/AP
FILE - In this Nov. 3, 2020 file photo, Steve Benjamin, mayor of Columbia, S.C., right, looks on as U.S. House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, left, speaks with a voter outside a polling place in Columbia, S.C. During a city council meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 3, 2021, Benjamin said that he was considering issuing a new state of emergency for the city, a declaration that he said would allow him to impose mask requirements. (AP Photo/Meg Kinnard, File)

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The outgoing mayor of Columbia, South Carolina has been awarded a Harvard fellowship to mentor and teach students.

Steve Benjamin’s office announced Monday he will teach a course in health policy and leadership at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health during the spring 2022 term.

The class will study approaches to issues including the COVID-19 pandemic, gun violence, climate resilience, and racial justice.

Benjamin, one of the state’s highest-profile Democrats, has served as the first Black mayor of South Carolina’s capital city since 2010.

He said earlier this year that he wasn’t seeking a fourth term in office.