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In Harmony

Gregorian chant , the monophonic liturgical music that serves as a symbol of unity in the Roman Catholic Church, emerged in the Middle Ages and is considered to be the foundation of modern Western music with its uniform, free-flowing melodic structure and positively seamless sound. Thought to bring peace to listeners and create a contemplative and meditative environment in the sanctuary, the sonic profile of chant music is achieved when many voices sing the same melody, composed of the same notes, in unison.


Music, being identical with heaven, isn't a thing of momentary thrills, or even hourly ones. It's a condition of eternity.

—Gustav Holst

While powerful and critical to liturgical ceremonies, the monophonic composition of Gregorian chant is characteristically devoid of musical accompaniment and harmony, the pleasing blend of simultaneous voices of differing pitches. As melody comprises a specific arrangement of pitches to create the structure of sound, harmony creates variety and the fluid motion that results in the emotional response people feel when listening to music. Harmony cannot be achieved when all members sing the same note.

At Pepperdine, our foundational values provide the melody for our community to function and thrive with the pieces essential to our progress. Harmony is only created when members with different backgrounds and experiences, with a variety of skills and qualities, add their unique notes to achieve a dynamic sound that resonates widely and deeply.


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Pepperdine was awarded a $10 million grant from the W. M. Keck Foundation to establish the Keck Data Science Initiative to strengthen teaching methods and access to research in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Through the initiative, the University will introduce a data science degree program, engage students with data science leaders within the broader global scientific community, partner students with science faculty and guest scholars, and apply data science to ethically address relevant and critical questions in contemporary society.

$1.15 Billion
The University's FY21 endowment funds


10-year total endowment growth

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$1.67 Billion
Value of FY21 net assets maintained by the University

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Throughout spring 2021, the Counseling Center offered a variety of virtual psychoeducational workshops and support groups to help undergraduate and graduate students residing in California, as well as all international students, cope with the stress and anxiety of a uniquely challenging time in history. The University also partnered with stress and anxiety management app Sanvello to help students track their mood and health habits, practice mindfulness and meditation, and develop positive daily habits to support their mental health needs.

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The Graziadio Business School and Seaver College introduced the Pepperdine Exploratory and Accelerated Research Laboratory (PEARL), a new academic initiative funded through the Pepperdine Cross-School Collaborative Research Program that incorporates students' insights into the research that undergraduate and graduate faculty are passionate about. Clark Johnson, assistant professor of marketing at the Graziadio School, and Sarah Fischbach, assistant professor of integrated marketing communication at Seaver College, spearheaded the program that also features a lab to help students discover how research is developed, collected, and published.

J. Goosby Smith

J. Goosby Smith was named the inaugural vice president for community belonging and chief diversity officer at Pepperdine, and April Harris Akinloye ('00, MA '05) was named assistant vice president for community belonging. In her new role, Smith reports directly to president Jim Gash, serves as a member of the University's Steering Team, and is a principal leader on the University Diversity Council.