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Step Forward Day – Sets the tone for Pepperdine students.



Step Forward Day - 25th Anniversary
Step Forward Day – 25th Anniversary

Pepperdine students kicked off the year by gathering at Alumni Park this Saturday August 8th  celebrating the 25th anniversary of Step Forward Day.  This is Pepperdine’s largest day for community service.  Over 2,000 step forward day volunteers, volunteer throughout the world,  1,600 in LA and Ventura Counties alone joined efforts this day to give back .

Volunteer - Kylie Rasgon
Volunteer – Kylie Rasgon


The day started  at the Veterans Home of California West LA. Volunteers assisted in landscaping, gardening, repainting  trellises.  At Topanga Elementary Charter School volunteers had story time and arts and crafts with children.  After a morning of service Alumni, students and local volunteers gathered at Alumni Park to wrap up the event.

School on Wheels, partnered with the University’s alumni and broke the Guinness world record for longest line of backpacks.



Pepperdine Men's Volleyball Team
Pepperdine University        Men’s Volleyball Team


Malibu Mayor Joan House along with Catherine Meek, Executive Director of School on Wheels where there to officiate the back pack line.  Sara Jackson,Vice Chancellor Pepperdine commented on the day, “its’ a wonderful idea not only bringing attention to School On Wheels but also giving the backpacks to homeless children which they will use as their first back pack for the beginning of their school year.   This event builds community and it sets the tone for Pepperdine students” .

Linda Parks ,Sara Jackson, Malibu Mayor Joan House,Tiffany Wright
Peter Thompson, Sinead Chilton, Catherine Meek, Sara Jackson, Malibu Mayor Joan House,Tiffany Wright




Students and volunteers hustled to create the line around Alumni park, a collaborative effort placing each back pack one by one, backpacks had to be touching in order to qualify. In total 2, 710 backpacks were lined, the backpack donation a worth of $50,000.

First Year Students McKenna Murray and Xinran Bi
First Year Students        McKenna Murray & Xinran Bi



First year students McKenna Murray and Xinran Bi, shared their excitement about volunteering and eagerness to start academic year.  Pepperdine’s men’s volleyball team was  enthusiastic during the event, gathering with their teammates to celebrate a day of service.

In the past 25 years Pepperdine’s volunteer center, has successfully collaborated with 200 community organizations, organizing over 60,000 service hours across the world every year.


For volunteer opportunities please go to:

Story and photographs by JC Cadena

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