Basketball game


with conviction

The only guidance we can get on the inner journey comes through relationships in which others can help us discern our leadings.

At Pepperdine, thoughtful conversations and the investigation of society's greatest needs develop our concerned, charismatic change-makers who have, rooted deep within them, a heart for advocacy and the conviction to lead.

Through carefully planned curricula and mentorship opportunities, the University enables the exploration and discovery that creates a culture of leadership that is well-known both on our domestic and international campuses, as well as around the world.

In the classroom, students become privy to the principles and philosophies of the foremost thought-leaders and activists who have influenced great change in the communities about which they are most passionate. Through studies of business, policy, education, law, and social and natural sciences, they become equipped with the knowledge to share a vision for a better world and the courage to motivate others to reveal their own potential.

At the center of the institution are those faculty-mentors who encourage their students to carve their own paths and engage in transformational service in the world. These teachers inspire a recognition of the God-given worth of all people and a deep respect for the diverse beliefs represented in our community. With a deepened sense of understanding and compassion, students develop as effective leaders who promote a vision for a better world.

26,063 new donors contributed $58.6 million to the Campaign for Pepperdine, which raised a total of $470,849,379.



Michael F. Adams, who served as the president of the University of Georgia from 1997 to 2013 and the vice president for university affairs at Pepperdine from 1982 to 1989, was named chancellor of Pepperdine University in June 2015 with the charge of taking a leadership role on major initiatives and helping to strengthen the University's endowment.

Sarah Houston and friends

Growing up around Bethesda, Maryland, an area known as being one of the most affluent and highly educated communities in the United States, Sarah Houston ('14) admits she did not encounter much diversity in her youth.

Inspired by this and hungry for a transformative experience, she applied for a Posse Foundation Scholarship as a senior in high school and discovered that the leadership program empowered her to identify and potentially solve inequalities in higher education. Working hard to bring together students of different backgrounds once on campus, she enabled relationships between her disparate peers as a Posse Scholar and became privy to discussions surrounding issues of race, identity, and class.

"I would have never experienced that had I not been part of the program," she says. "Each person in my posse had a different experience at Pepperdine, and I was able to be with them when they discussed the unique struggles and micro-aggressions that occurred in their lives."

Houston, who also earned a Fulbright scholarship in 2014 to travel to Turkey in 2014 as an educational teaching assistant, became a true advocate for diversity on campus, embracing the belief that fostering an open dialogue enhances scholarship. As the vice president of the Student Government Association on campus, Houston was equally instrumental in implementing the first-ever women's initiative on campus, which facilitates discussions about the struggles and benefits of being a woman on campus and brings together the different women's groups in order to create a sense of solidarity and a larger cultural shift in how students view gender issues.

"Leadership doesn't come in one size," she says. "Posse really helped me expand my scope of what a leader is."

Jennifer Kamara

As part of the master of public policy internship program at the School of Public Policy, Jennifer Kamara (MPP '15) worked in strategic and performance management issues, which functions to assist Congress in addressing governance and management challenges across all agencies. "It solidified the fact that I wanted to pursue a career in public policy," she says. "I don't know if I'd be so certain if I hadn't done that internship."