What Will Hillary Clinton Do Now? Columbia University Could Be Her Next Employer

Don't look now, but a certain former first lady, former U.S. senator, former secretary of state, and former Democratic presidential nominee could be taking up shop at a university classroom, too. According to a report from the New York Daily News, Hillary Clinton could become a professor at Columbia University in the near future, assuming talks between the two sides proceed smoothly.

One option, according to sources close to Clinton who spoke to the Daily News, is for her to take up the title of "university professor," which would allow her to lecture across a range of topics without being tethered to any particular department. The same sources suggested that she'll probably make a decision on the Columbia opportunity in a matter of months, which makes sense; her book tour, for her memoir/campaign postmortem What Happened, is slated to continue for about two more months, with her final appearance coming on Denver, Colorado, on Dec. 11.

"I don't think it will be two years from now. She gave birth to this book last month. She's trying to get through that," the source reportedly told the paper. "But it will be a short time table."

Clinton, 69, is a graduate of Yale Law School ― which was where she met her husband, Bill ― and worked as an attorney prior to her career in elected politics. In the immediate aftermath of the 2016 presidential election, she kept a pretty low profile, occasionally popping up in a photo someone would snap with her while she was walking her dogs in the woods.

She ultimately returned to a more public kind of life in the months following the Trump inauguration, which she attended. In a speech at the Society of Irish Women's St. Patrick's dinner, she quipped that she was "ready to come out of the woods," teasing a return to a bigger stage.

That bigger stage really came about in September, when What Happened was released. Since then, Clinton's been touring almost constantly, absorbing both praise from her supporters and criticism from her detractors.

She's also dropped in for the occasional visit with a late-night TV host, with her appearance on The Tonight Show last week standing out as a notable example, The episode included a sequence in which Miley Cyrus, as well as several women who write for the show, read aloud some of their praise and their thanks for the former presidential nominee.

In other words, she's back in the limelight, although whether that continues once her book tour comes to an end remains to be seen. Nabbing a professor's position at Columbia, however, would presumably take up a fair amount of her time. The report also suggests that Columbia could ultimately be where Clinton decides to store her archives, which after more than three decades in public life is probably quite a sizable collection.

According to the New York Daily News, a university official declined to comment on the story, and Kenneth Prewitt, the Carnegie Professor of Public Affairs, said it would be "premature" to comment on the report. The paper's source, for their part, made it sound as if conversations between Clinton and the university are still pretty preliminary:

It's all fluid. It could be a number of things. No decisions have been made, but there are talks.

Clinton herself hasn't made any public statements on the matter just yet, and given her relatively busy schedule, there's no reason to expect that to change too quickly. Her next public appearance, a book signing, is scheduled for Oct. 23 at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut.