Best professor: Danny Hayes

Media Credit: Madeleine Cook | Hatchet Photographer

What sets associate professor of political science Danny Hayes apart from all of the other politics professors at GW?

First, he’s a three-time winner in the best professor category. He’s also quite well-known on campus for his engaging lectures – and his chili pepper rating on RateMyProfessor. Whether you’re a political science major or just filling a G-PAC requirement, Hayes’s classes are always compelling and filled with his nerdy dad jokes.

But Hayes says his enthusiasm for the subject sets him apart. Well, that and his affinity for explaining the Constitution by way of tic-tac-toe and public policy by way of rap songs.

“Presenting things in ways that are unusual that students haven’t thought about before is one way to get them to stick, so I try to do that as much as possible,” Hayes said.

You’ll likely come away from his class never forgetting the way public opinion influences public policy once you see Hayes’ dance moves to “Stand Up” by Ludacris. You’ll probably never listen to the refrain of “When I move, you move” the same way again, but it’s worth it.

A former journalist, Hayes studies how the media and politicians influence the public. Hayes, who is also a contributor to The Washington Post’s “Monkey Cage” blog, said he likes to “make it clear that I’m happy to be there” for students.

“They believe that I care about what I’m teaching,” Hayes said. “I think that helps students stay engaged in class.”

Readers’ pick: Danny Hayes

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