Barely three months out of office, former Mississauga mayor Hazel McCallion has already found a new job as special adviser to the principal of the University of Toronto Mississauga.
In a year-long appointment, Ms. McCallion, who turned 94 earlier this month, will help develop a new master's degree in urban innovation and development at the university's Institute for Management and also be a guest lecturer.
While planning for her role is still under way, Ms. McCallion said her passion project is to develop a course to will teach people how to participate in public office. It would be open to the public at large, not just students of the faculty, she said.
"I want to encourage them to prepare themselves and not just go into it blindly," she said.
While the university offered Ms. McCallion the role of adviser, the concept for a non-credit class on how to be a politician was born of nearly four decades being asked the same questions time and again.
"A lot of times [people say], 'How do I get elected?'" Ms. McCallion said. "'I want to get into public office, I want to run for office, what advice could you give me?' I'm constantly being asked that."
Ms. McCallion, who was first elected in 1978, oversaw the massive growth of Mississauga from farmland to Canada's sixth-largest city. UTM was known as Erindale College at the time she was elected and, 20 years later, became a satellite campus of the University of Toronto.
"[Ms. McCallion] has played a pivotal role in helping transform UTM into the mid-size comprehensive university campus that it is today," Deep Saini, U of T Mississauga's principal, said in a release.
"Her considerable experience will be a true asset as we chart the future of this campus," he said.
For Ms. McCallion, speaking at UTM will be her first experience of attending a lecture at the university – or any post-secondary institute, for that matter.
"I've never had the opportunity to go to university because I was a depression kid," Ms. McCallion said.
Ryerson University also announced on Monday the addition of another GTA politician to its ranks: Olivia Chow.
Ms. Chow, the long-time New Democratic Party MP and Toronto mayoral candidate, will serve a three-year term as a visiting professor in the Faculty of Arts and develop a program similar to Ms. McCallion's, on democratic participation.