About Pacifica Graduate Institute Alumni Association
The Pacifica Graduate Institute Alumni Association (the “Association” or “PGIAA”) formed on 17 April 2013 as a California 501(c) Nonprofit Corporation for the purposes of developing an operational and charitable membership association that supports both the alumni (“Alumni” or “alums”) of Pacifica Graduate Institute (the “Institute” or “PGI”) and the wider community in pursuit of developing their intellectual, spiritual, altruistic, and professional capabilities.
In 2011, an invitation went out to all alumni inviting them to a Steering Committee meeting to explore the development of an Alumni Association. Fostered by Pacifica Graduate Institute’s (PGI) Office of Alumni Relations, eighty alumni came together that weekend to explore and envision what an Alumni Association made of PGI alumni might look like as it grew. Momentum from this meeting led to the establishment of an Executive Committee comprised of interested alumni who would work with the Office of Alumni Affairs to build an association. Alumni were once again invited to come to additional annual meetings in 2012 and 2013 where breakout sessions delved into exploring the aspirations of the association and committees formed to explore the how to best serve the needs and interests of alumni. By 2013, the Executive Committee, in response to the wide-spread accord of fellow alumni for the association to become its own independent organization—decided to apply to become a separate, tax-deductible nonprofit organization. The Pacifica Graduate Institute Alumni Association (PGIAA) was incorporated as an autonomous 501(c)3 nonprofit on April 17, 2013.
The mission of the Pacifica Graduate Institute Alumni Association (the “Association”) is to develop and operate an educational and charitable organization that supports Pacifica Graduate Institute (the “Institute”) alumni and the wider community in the pursuit of developing their intellectual, spiritual, altruistic, and professional capabilities. To further its mission, the Association will engage in varied charitable and educational activities and programs, including, but not limited to, the following:
The resulting Pacifica Graduate Institute Alumni Association seeks not only to provide alumni and the general public with opportunities for personal and professional growth, but also to serve as a path for making positive changes within society as a whole through service and education.
The Institute established an Office of Alumni Affairs (subsequently retitled the Office of Alumni Relations) in response to requests by alums to maintain an on-going relationship with the institute. Indeed, a disparate array of alums spearheaded contacts between graduates of Pacifica to instigate the process culminating in the formation of the PGIAA.
- Providing opportunities to stimulate interest and learning among the Institute’s alumni and the general public in various areas of study, including, in particular, those pursued by the Institute’s alumni, such as psychology, the humanities, and mythological studies.
- Promoting idea sharing, personal growth, professional development, and public service opportunities through fostering relationships and strengthening connections among the Institute’s alumni and with the community at large.
- Offering programs and activities of an educational and/or charitable nature to the Institute’s alumni and local communities (where applicable), such as:
- Structured mentoring and “buddy” programs and support networks among the Institute’s alumni to help them develop professionally and promote the exchange of ideas in their respective fields of study;
- Merit and/or need-based scholarship programs for students attending the Institute;
- Public discussion groups, forums, panels, lectures on topics in the Institute’s alumni’s fields of study, such as community writer’s symposiums, alumni film series, and mental health seminars;
- Events centered around charitable and/or educational activities that offer alumni the opportunity to connect with each other while “doing good” and/or learning, such as non-profit fund-raisers, community environmental cleanup projects, educational retreats, etc.;
- Community outreach programs (particularly in under-served areas), such as junior high/high school student mentoring and tutorial programs.
The PGIAA pursues and embodies eight vision statements emphasizing community, Gaia responsibility, ambassadorship, collective memory, sponsorship, sustainability, gratefulness, and groundedness.
The Pacifica Graduate Institute Alumni Association (PGIAA) serves as a welcoming community for all alumni, endeavoring to provide each alum a feeling of belonging, family, and home. PGIAA extends this concept of community beyond its confines by promoting and sponsoring opportunities for Pacifica Graduate Institute (PGI) alumni to “give back” through charitable service activities for those in need, and educational programs in their respective areas of study for the public.
The PGIAA acts as a loving and fierce voice in caring for and preserving our Earth and Universe by networking with each other and with the greater (PGI community to protect and heal our environment for future generations. In furtherance of this aspiration, PGIAA endeavors to provide PGI alumni with opportunities to protect and nurture the planet.
The PGIAA membership serves as ambassadors for the educational vision and ethos imparted upon them during their studies at PGI, and they create opportunities for alumni and the public to share these perspectives.
The PGIAA website serves as a sacred and practical container where we bring together alumni and other participants, honoring their experiences, dreams, stories, ideas, and needs in order to further its mission by transforming, developing, and predicting PGIAA’s identity and future path.
The PGIAA creates, sponsors, and promotes sustainable programs and initiatives that benefit the collective good by assisting in and promoting the lifelong personal, professional, and altruistic development of PGI alums.
The PGIAA is self-sustaining through fundraising activities, membership contributions, and outreach programs. PGIAA’s financial management is transparent, autonomous, and is able to fund its own activities as well as other specific projects and activities related to the shared intention of PGIAA and PGI of “tending the soul of and in the world.
The PGIAA, in gratefulness to PGI, embraces its mission to tend the soul of the world by using its collective voice to commend, support, and lovingly challenge PGI to stay true to this mission in all its future development in this ever-changing world.
The PGIAA maintains a centered, grounded vision and practice that dances above, through, and with other organizational and individual needs and imperatives.
The Association supports five mission- and vision-oriented committees:
Communications & Marketing Committee
The PGIAA Communications Committee’s purpose is to foster and maintain PGI graduates’ connections with their cohorts, other alumni, and PGI. The committee helps create, develop, review, monitor, improve, and coordinate all aspects of communications with alumni using a variety of media including but not limited to the PGIAA website and newsletters; correspondence, announcements, and notices, social networking sites (facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, etc.).
The committee helps monitor the message, content, and coherence of alumni communications to and from all alumni.
The committee uses creative means to market the message of the Association to its members and those interested in attending Pacifica Graduate Institute.
Regional Coordination Committee
Each Regional Coordinator will coordinate activities within assigned regions (pods) across the country and throughout the world to assist in the development of activities that promote the Alumni Association, enhance connection with all alumni, and foster alumni professional and personal development. Members of this committee reach out to assist the alumni in their region to form a strong, supportive, and active community. Coordinators are often the first point-of-contact for local events.
Alumni Services Committee
The Alumni Services Committee looks for opportunities to help PGIAA members further their professional development by imagining new networking opportunities, mentoring partnerships with future graduates, and creating scholarships for qualified and deserving individuals. This committee also monitors and communicates what alumni may expect or need from the Association. This requires creatively balancing alumni needs with available resources and creating reasonable, practical responses.
Development and Funding Committee
The Development & Funding Committee devises and recommends philanthropy and fund development polices and strategies to the Executive Board for action. The committee nurtures a culture of philanthropy throughout the organization and assures that all donors are respected and honored. Through the fund development planning process, the committee establishes charitable contribution goals for the annual budget and devises an annual fund development plan, including recommendations and benchmarks for action by the Board. Through the fund development planning process, the committee helps ensure that the Board is informed about the basic principles and best practices in fund development in order to help it become a “donor-centered” organization. This committee helps the Board articulate the case for philanthropic support and provides personal follow-up to individual Board members to monitor their participation and involvement.
Human Benefits Committee
The Human Benefits Committee assists alumni and the “world community” by encouraging its members to develop services that “tend soul in the world” through a wide variety of activities (i.e., community service projects, Alumni Relation’s “Pay It Forward” Project, disaster response, and other types of volunteerism). In the Pacifica tradition of looking for ways to actively and responsibly heal our planet, this committee helps alumni continue to live and model a “depth-centered” example in the world.