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Belonging in COMMUNITY

At the heart of our well-being are the relationships we cultivate—not only the family and friends who surround us but the communities to which we belong. At Pepperdine, students, faculty, staff, and alumni come together around a shared mission, connected by a common objective to lead and serve a hurting world. So, how does Pepperdine cultivate a unified community that builds one another up to lead and serve? How are leadership, service, and belonging connected?

students worshipping

The answer is: intimately. In life, a profound sense of belonging comes organically as we lead and serve beside one another. Working together with a common mission, toward a common goal, with a common love, can accomplish uncommon results where each participant experiences remarkable belonging. Our job is to bring alumni and students together, encouraged by our faculty and staff, to merge our collective brilliance, creativity, and leadership to make a tangible difference in the world. This is our vision for a transformative community.

Stories are told of the bonds that are formed between those who go into battle together. Our world desperately needs courageous souls who give sacrificially to fight for justice, reconciliation, truth, and love. When our community fights together for virtue, we join forces with the best traditions of humanity, and we experience newfound belonging as soldiers of peace. As a Christian community, we are led by the Prince of Peace who calls us to be arbiters of his grace, to bring people together, and to help them belong. Pepperdine is a community fighting to reserve a prominent place for each of its members to personally experience an immeasurable sense of kinship in belonging.


Pepperdine's Office of the Chaplain introduced a Spiritual Life series.

The Office of the Chaplain introduced a series of digital spiritual life activities throughout fall 2020 while students, faculty, and staff remained off campus. The programs included small groups, spiritual mentorship opportunities, large worship events, and weekly worship and fellowship sessions, as well as Practicing Faith, an online resource that features a vast collection of original content representing all Pepperdine schools and focusing on topics such as discernment, grief, prayer, and rest.

"The priority is to make certain that students can connect with one another intentionally and with depth. God's faithfulness is true, even through Zoom," says Gus Peterson, director of convocation. "Our intention and hope is to empower as many mentorships and small groups as possible during this online season and provide intentionality and collaboration in worship spaces that draw our unique community together."

Alumna Sydney Sauter and Associate Professor Loan Kim featured for their published study.

Seaver College alumna Sydney Sauter ('20) and associate professor of nutrition Loan Kim published their study "Loneliness and friendlessness among adolescents in 25 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean" in Child and Adolescent Mental Health. In collaboration with public health colleague Kathryn Jacobsen from George Mason University in Virginia, after a year of analyzing responses from more than 76,000 students, the team found that one in six students in Latin America and the Caribbean reported feeling lonely and/or having no close friends. Their study recommends that loneliness be addressed through community health plans to reduce the burden of social isolation on public health.


Best Online MBA program in California
Graziadio Business School
U.S. News & World Report 2020 Best Online MBA Programs

A tablet shows the improved and expanded capabilities of Salus technology in tracking COVID-19.

HSAC@SPP expanded the user capabilities of SALUS technology to provide maps and dashboards in response to the public's need for real-time information about the emerging COVID-19 pandemic. Public dashboards include different data layers that provide important information for community use, including area public coronavirus testing sites, grab-and-go food locations, and, in partnership with the Los Angeles Unified School District, maps for area mental health resources for local schoolchildren and their families. These dashboards have been customized for 17 different cities and agencies throughout the Los Angeles area, including LAX and LA Metro and the Cities of Long Beach and West Hollywood.

Professor Roslyn Satchel

Roslyn Satchel, Blanche E. Seaver Professor of Communication, received a fellowship from the Berkman Klein Center at Harvard University to study how cyberspace interacts with society. Satchel will explore the influence of technology and media on resisting and/or reporting intimate partner violence and will also analyze COVID-19 pandemic policies and any resulting domestic abuse increases from such policies.

49 master of science degrees

at the Graduate School of Education and Psychology are now offered 100% online:

  • Learning Design and Technology
  • Leadership in Pre-K to 12 Education
  • Leadership in Higher Education
  • Organizational Leadership and Learning