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UCLAFall 2012Philanthropy as Civic EngagementDepartments: Civic EngagementJudi Smith24 students
UCLAFall 2013Philanthropy as Civic EngagementDepartments: Civic EngagementJudi Smith20 students
UCLAFall 2014Philanthropy as Civic EngagementDepartments: Civic EngagementJudi Smith20 students
UCLASpring 2015Philanthropy: Confronting Challenges of Serving the DisabledDepartments: Disability StudiesKyle McJunkin20 students
UCLAWinter 2016Philanthropy as Civic EngagementDepartments: Civic Engagement; HonorsJennifer Lindholm19 students
UCLASpring 2016Philanthropy: Confronting Challenges of Serving the DisabledDepartments: Disability Studies; HonorsKyle McJunkin20 students
UCLASpring 2017Philanthropy as Civic EngagementDepartments: Civic Engagement; HonorsJennifer Lindholm21 students
UCLASpring 2018Philanthropy as Civic EngagementDepartments: Civic Engagement; HonorsJennifer Lindholm24 students

Philanthropy as Civic Engagement
Taught by Jennifer Lindholm
Department of Civic Engagement, Honors

Jennifer A. Lindholm is Assistant Vice Provost in UCLA’s Division of Undergraduate Education. Before joining the division, she served (2001-2006) as Associate Director of the Cooperative Institutional Research Program at UCLA’s Higher Education Research Institute and as Director of the Institute’s Triennial National Faculty Survey. During that period, Lindholm was also Visiting Professor of Higher Education and Organizational Change in UCLA’s Graduate School of Education & Information Studies. She served as Director and Co-Investigator for the decade-long (2001-2011) Spirituality in Higher Education project and coauthored Cultivating the Spirit: How College Can Enhance Students’ Inner Lives (Jossey-Bass, 2011). Her most recent book is The Quest for Meaning and Wholeness: Spiritual and Religious Connections in the Lives of College Faculty (Jossey-Bass, 2014). Other publications focus on the structural and cultural dimensions of academic work; the career development, work experiences, and professional behavior of college and university faculty; issues related to institutional change; and undergraduate students’ personal development. Lindholm also works as a consultant to colleges and universities on topics related to her areas of research and practical expertise.

Class structure:

  • First 5 weeks
    • 1st hr – lecture on key concepts
    • 2nd hr – guest speakers (donors, NPO leaders in community)
    • 3rd hr – group work
  • Last 5 weeks
    • Entire class is devoted to group work (discussions and presentations)

Group work is facilitated by one of the Civic Engagement Scholars

      • Laura Fox
      • Nol Matrin-Tungpalan
      • Michael Suarez

Student roles

  • Convening Directors – determine the manner in which voting will occur at the Board meeting; responsible for finalizing wording of the Board’s mission statement
  • Program Directors – introduce groups’ presentations and keep each presentation on time; moderate Q/A session for their group during final Board meeting
  • Editorial Directors – responsible for final editing and proofreading; emailing docs on time
  • Events Directors – work with development director, Ms. Ambareen Naqvi, to plan Giving Ceremony
  • Evaluation and Progress Report Directors – create a questionnaire to illuminate the students’ experiences in class, the findings from which will be submitted as part of the class report to The Philanthropy Lab. The directors will also review the requirements for the progress report for the agencies to be funded by the Spring 2018 class. (assuming this is related to the Eval incentive)

Formally organized Board meeting

  • Welcome: Board Members and Guests
  • Old Business
  • New Business – Funding Decisions:
    • Guidelines for discussion and decision-making (Convening Directors)
    • Brief summary for each of the three proposals, including responses to any questions/concerns raised during the May 21 presentations (Program Directors)
    • Discussion and decisions about funding (entire Board; limited to 90 minutes)
  • Updates & Reports Regarding Future Events
    • Recommendations for awardee progress reports (Evaluation and Progress Report Directors)
    • Plans for the Awards Reception (Events Directors)
    • Evaluation of the class experience (Evaluation and Progress Report Directors)

During one class period, 4 former students return to “talk about their experiences and offer perspective to this year’s class” and then stay for workgroup sessions to serve as “guest co-facilitators”


Latest News

September 14, 2020

UCLA philanthropy class benefits community groups and students

September 14, 2020

The View From the Playground

Student Testimonials

Based on my interactions with other students, the Ambassadors Conference has provided me with a lot more knowledge about the non-profit sector, why it is important to give, and how our collaborative decision to provide funding for organizations is going to target specific communities and make a tremendous impact. My favorite part about the conference was going through the selection process of the non-profits. It has been very difficult – we went through a few presentations and honestly everyone brought their A game and the process of giving is very difficult.

Oscar GaytanUniversity of California, Los Angeles

Philanthropy hinges on your ability to enjoy the ‘yeses’ and withstand the ‘nos.’ It is difficult to turn down more worthy causes than you can support, but it’s still meaningful and necessary to make the commitment.

Kyle McGuireUniversity of California, Los Angeles