Philanthropy as Civic Engagement course
UCLA has long been at the forefront of providing an innovative and dynamic undergraduate education, with a strong emphasis on community service and civic engagement. The result is that students graduate from UCLA with a rich portfolio of skills, experiences and academic competence that sets them up for future leadership and success in life.
You know this is true because you participated in Philanthropy as Civic Engagement, a quarter-long honors course offered once a year. You wanted to graduate with real-world problem solving experience and you wanted your time as a Bruin to mean something on a larger scale. Because of you and your classmates, UCLA students have awarded over $600,000 to Los Angeles nonprofits. Nonprofits like Swipe Out Hunger, Our House, St. Joseph Center and Kindred Spirits Care Farm that work tirelessly to improve the lives of your fellow Angelinos.
In addition to making a direct positive impact on the Los Angeles community, you developed broadly applicable skills including business model assessment, evaluating organizational and program sustainability, and working with colleagues to achieve positive outcomes. Skills you’ve taken with you and will continue to use throughout your career.
It’s time to cultivate the next generation of change-makers and we hope your passion to address social challenges remains as strong as it was when you were a student at UCLA. In Philanthropy as Civic Engagement, you learned to consider social and civic needs, effectively advocate for your choices, and balance desired outcomes with practical limitations. Some of those choices were difficult, but in the end the nonprofits you chose made real positive change with the grants you awarded them. Changes like transforming an underutilized schoolyard into a nature-filled outdoor learning center with LA Audbon Society, providing food and necessities to in-crisis college students with Swipe Out Hunger, and equipping OUR HOUSE with the resources to bring grief support groups to schools and the underserved Spanish speaking community.
In course evaluations, you marked this as the most transformative class you had taken at UCLA. But in order to continue offering this unique experiential learning opportunity to students we need your help. Although original funding for the $100,000 PACE course has historically come from the Once Upon a Time Foundation, over the years this has decreased and last year was the final funding.
The class has seen community support grow and welcomed philanthropists like business leader Meyer Luskin in class to share their experience, insight and expertise. In order for the next generation of Bruins to have a tangible impact on the nonprofits and Southern California, we need you.
Your gift of ANY SIZE not only provides funding to programs supporting the Los Angeles community, it also empowers your fellow Bruins to address social challenges. The needs of our community are ever-changing and broad; equipping the next generation of change makers with the ability to create real-world solutions is essential to our success.