Pepperdine University is a private university in Malibu, California. This UCC affiliate contains an undergraduate campus (Seaver), a Law School, Business School, School of Public Policy, and School of Psychology.
Formed in 1937, the school has grown from a tiny start-up in the downtown area to hosting campus locations in Malibu, West LA, Encino, Westlake Village, and Irvine. Across these locations, Pepperdine educates about 3,500 undergraduate and 4,200 post-graduate students every year.
Pepperdine competes in Division I athletics, excelling primarily in Volleyball and Baseball. While Pepperdine maintains a respectable ranking on most collegiate reviews, they are probably most renowned for their consistently high rankings in "Most Beautiful Campus" and similar ratings.
Undergraduate School (Seaver)
- Seaver strongly encourages and supports the entrepreneurial spirit of many of its students. This spirit is especially strong in the school's Business Administration Division, where students are offered many courses in Management, Finance, and the like that strengthen their entrepreneuraial skills, and they are exposed to many incredible opportunities to exercise those skills throguh clubs, honors socieites/business fraternities, and internships. There are similar opportunities for students of other divisions as well.
- The Pepperdine Entrepreneur Club, open to all undergraduate students, is composed of an outstanding, dedicated group of students and specializes in start-up development. They are master networkers, forging relationships with the many guest speakers that speak at meetings every few weeks. Among these speakers are executive members of large companies, investors, and strategists. This club enables student entrepreneurs to act on their ideas by partnering them with an alumni mentor.
- The Career Services Center at Seaver College hosts events that provide students with the tool kit needed to succeed as student entrepreneurs. They also offer one on one sessions in which they can help the student get started on their entrepreneurial journey by helping them plan next steps and helping them network with the right people. The Career Center also helps students find internships that appeal to their entrepreneurial interests.
- Waves of Innovation is an incredible program unique to Pepperdine that seeks to enable our best entrepreneurs to see their ideas through. It is a school-wide competition in which students (in addition to faculty and staff) submit their ideas in writing. Some of the best ideas are selected to receive grants that take them into the prototyping phase, which is also the second stage of the competition. Finally, the best prototypes receive further grant money to see the idea through to completion. It's a thrilling process, especially given that ideas can be awarded grants up to $150,000!
- Pepperdine is renowned for having one of the best study abroad programs in the country. They also do an incredible job of arranging amazing internships for students in their host countries, enabling students to strengthen their skills by engaging in the work that they want to do in an unfamilar setting, preparing them to conquer any situation
Business School (Graziadio)
- Graziadio offers an Entrepreneurship concentration that can be obtained through the 15 and 20 month MBA programs. Students complete course work in Generating, Marketing, Financing, and Managing new ventures in addition to other elective and core coursework.
- Graziadio also participates in the SEER certificate which strives to create profitable business practices while maintaining a focus on social consciousness and sustainability.
- Hult Prize (part of the Clinton Foundation) allows Graziadio students to pitch their solution to a global problem in a case competition format. The grand prize (winning the global round) is a $1,000,000 seed fund in order to realize the group's idea.
Faculty Innovation and Entrepreneurship
- The Faculty at Seaver College are renowned for how much they care for and invest in their students. They are constantly seeking to improve available programs and current curriculum and often encourage students to collaborate with them in innovating curriculum. Faculty are also encouraged to compete the annual Waves of Innovation competition, and it's not uncommon for faculty members to take semesters or years off to work on books or side projects.
-New majors and minors are in varying stages of creation. These minors tend to be more interdisciplinary. For example, a minor in nonprofit management and a minor in sustainability both have coursework in business but also in social sciences. Pepperdine also offers contract majors for students that would like more personalized coursework.
- Most of the professors at the Graziadio School of Business have other ventures that they are pursuing. Some are involved with start-ups and some have their own consulting groups that they work with. Professors are very encouraging of student innovation and have even been involved professionally with students after graduation. One of the great selling points of having a small class size is allowing professors to share their personal experience in the field and connect with students about their personal ambitions.
University - Industry Collaboration
- Pepperdine University is remarkably good at helping students apply and secure internships. Faculty members with connections in certain industries go out of their way to help students network. Additionally, the Career Services Center connects students with industry specialists who can assist them in pursuing an internship or career in their respective field. Further, Pepperdine is a part of the University Career Action Network (UCAN), along with 19 other of colleges and universities including Harvard and Princeton that provied a database of internships in different industries for students to utilize and pursue.
Regional and Local Economic Development
- Graziadio competes in C4C or 'Challenge for Charity'. Business Schools compete from around the country to log the most community service hours. This promotes friendly competition, great networking opportunities, and most importantly a way to give back to the surrounding community
- Step-Forward Day is a school-wide initiative that encourages all students to spend roughly 5 hours on a unified Saturday completing various projects throughout the Los Angeles area. Activities range from re-arranging libraries to picking fruit on a charitable farm. In-N-Out also partners with the school and sends a truck to the after-party.
Aundene (Ace) Szmolyan