Pepperdine Ambassadors Council meets at the beginning of the semester to take updated photos for the PAC website and social media pages. PAC members create a diverse network of people as they serve the University as year-long representatives. Photo Courtesy of the Pepperdine Ambassadors Council website
As the spring 2022 semester is approaching the end, Pepperdine Ambassadors Council hosts recruitment for new members for the upcoming 2022-23 academic year.
With a rich history of being the bridge of Pepperdine students to the University, the organization looks for passionate and involved students who want to make an impact to be a part of PAC 33, PAC Recruitment Coordinator Dawson Foster said.
“We’re looking for people who can represent the University in a multitude of ways and who love going to Pepperdine and want to promote its values and mission,” Foster said.
PAC serves as the bridge between the student population and the Malibu and Pepperdine communities, Foster said. The PAC mission statement indicates that each student serves as a volunteer representative who works to further Pepperdine’s goals and fulfill its mission.
The theme for this year’s recruitment is “connect,” focusing on the diverse connections of Pepperdine students, Foster said.
“[In the recruitment process] we’re looking at the innate humaneness and people rather than accomplishments, awards or whatever it may be,” Foster said. “I truly think that the best representation for Pepperdine are people that are true to themselves and truly love Pepperdine [which] is what we’re looking for.”
Senior Lanie Jones said the application process usually takes a few weeks and this year’s application opened on Feb. 9 and closes March 23.
After the application closes, PAC begins candidate interviews and choose new PAC members Jones said.
“The first round is the written application, and then we’ll make selections from there on who we want to interview,” Jones said. “We have a bunch of different faculty members from the University who work really closely with PAC who sit in on the interviews as well as current council members. [The interview] takes 15 minutes or so.”
Each member on the Council can nominate up to five students that they think would represent the University well. Email notifications to nominees are sent out before the application opens and once the application open, anyone is welcome to apply, Foster said
Jones said being a part of PAC is a great opportunity to represent the Pepperdine students as they attend events with Pepperdine donors. Each member plays a different role in organizing and facilitating various aspects of PAC that ensure the success of the organization, Jones said.
“I stepped in as chaplain this semester. But there are roles like advancement liaison, the chair, and vice-chair operations, alumni liaison, etc.,” Jones said. “So there’s a lot of different ways that we all function. It’s really interesting because even though we’re all together on PAC and get to represent the University, we all have our own purview outside of that.”
Jones said she was the event coordinator this past semester for PAC, but due to members graduating, leadership positions shifted and now she is chaplain.
With this being her last semester in PAC, Jones said she was delighted to be the council’s chaplain.
“[I’m] still kind of figuring out what it looks like for me to be in [this] role, but I lead the weekly devotionals,” Jones said. “I’ll [also] close meetings [with] prayer and I handle our thank you cards for the guest speakers. I just kind of fill in the gaps where there’s no one else to spiritually, step in, in that role.”
Foster said he did not know what he was getting himself into when he applied for the recruitment coordinator role.
“When I got into PAC I got to rank [the] list of what [role] I wanted at the beginning of the year, and I put recruitment coordinator as my number one,” Foster said. “I didn’t think how much [work] it was actually going to be.”
As recruitment coordinator, Foster said he has been able to make impactful changes for PAC and the recruitment process such as encouraging students from diverse backgrounds within the University to apply.
“I’m really passionate about promoting change and promoting impactful beneficial change,” Foster said. “[As recruitment coordinator] I really want it to be an environment that, encourages authenticity of self, and encourages everyone of all facets of University of all backgrounds to apply and feel comfortable applying.”
PAC has created many lasting memories in his Pepperdine experience, Foster said. Some of those memories are the events they get to attend such as President Jim Gash’s Christmas party, but Foster’s favorite memory was when his fellow PAC members came to see him perform in “Mamma Mia!,” Foster said.
“I remember walking out the stage door seeing them all there. It made me feel so seen and loved and supported,” Foster said. “I knew musical probably wasn’t all of their things, you know, and so just the act of them coming out and watching the show and supporting me in that way was really, really special. It highlighted the kind of the family aspect that these people become your friends [but] it’s more than just Wednesday morning meetings.”
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