May 24, 2016

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Corey Blay

The NYU Alumni Association (NYUAA) represents all NYU alumni, from every NYU school and department—a community nearly half-a-million strong. The diverse and active NYUAA Board of Directors is made up of alumni volunteers who steer the Association in their mission to engage and support alumni. Corey Blay (STERN, WAG ’14) is completing his first year on the Board of Directors, where he serves on the Recent Alumni & Student Programming committee and the Board Membership sub-committee.  

Blay is an alumnus of the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, where he earned his MPA, and the Leonard N. Stern School of Business, where he earned his MBA. Previously, he received his BA in African-American Studies and Public Policy from the University of Chicago.

During his time at NYU, Blay was an exemplar of involvement, serving as president of the Government and Business Association, vice president of Stern’s Student Government, senator at-large and chief of staff of the Student Senators Council, and graduate student representative on the University Space Priorities Working Group. He received the Stern Service Award and President’s Service Award, and was named the 2014 All-University Commencement student speaker addressing his fellow graduates at Yankee Stadium.

Blay has continued his NYU involvement in his professional endeavors, currently acting as associate director for graduate leadership programs as part of the NYU Leadership Initiative. He is also the co-founder and CEO of Brotherhood Prep, which will be an independent, private middle school located in Central Harlem serving predominantly boys of color in grades 5–8. Brotherhood Prep is expected to open its doors in fall 2016.

Blay began his career at the Ethical Culture Fieldston School, a K–12 independent school in New York City, where he taught seventh grade history on the founding team for its new middle school and designed diversity and inclusion programming for students, faculty, and staff. Outside of the classroom, he managed political campaigns, served on the board of a national leadership development organization, and co-founded a youth advocacy organization in Harlem that partnered with Columbia University and the White House to develop leadership programs for low-income youth.

What is your favorite:

  • Food? I love a good lobster and steak dinner. It's the best of both worlds!
  • Book? The next book I plan to purchase is The Seventh Sense by Joshua Cooper Ramo.
  • TV Show and/or Movie? The most recent movie I've seen is Captain America: Civil War. As a longtime Marvel fan, I could geek out about so many parts of that movie. [For TV], this season of Game of Thrones has already been amazing, but I won't spoil anything for those who haven't seen it yet!
  • Song and/or Musical Artist? “Try a Little Tenderness” by Otis Redding or “Heatwave” by Martha and the Vandellas. They're indisputable classics in my book.
  • Way to spend a Saturday? Watching historical documentaries with my fiancée. We're both former history teachers and love learning more about the world.
  • Place to travel? This past March I had a chance to visit London for the first time and found myself in complete awe of its culture and architecture. It was a brief stay, but I intend to go back very soon!
  • Place on the NYU campus? The portrait gallery in Bobst Library is one of the hidden gems of NYU's campus. You can learn so much about NYU's history by spending a little time there.

What is your favorite memory from your time at NYU?

When I graduated in 2014, I had the honor to speak on behalf of my classmates during Commencement. It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience that I'll never forget.

Why do you give back to NYU?

I had such a transformational experience as an NYU student that I have no choice but to pay it forward and ensure future generations of NYU students have even more opportunities than I was afforded.