To promote and support students in choosing public service – either in their jobs or as volunteer activities – after they leave campus, Stanford seniors will be asked to sign on to a pledge:
"As a graduate of Stanford University, I will work toward a more just and sustainable world in my career or volunteer activities. I pledge to explore and take into account the social and environmental consequences of any job I consider and will try to improve these aspects of any organizations for which I work."
The second sentence is from The Graduation Pledge that started in 1987 as a project of the Bentley University Alliance for Ethics and Social Responsibility and has evolved into the Graduation Pledge Alliance. Stanford has been a past participant and there are 80 colleges and universities listed as current participants. Locally, these include UC Santa Cruz and Santa Clara University.
Last year, 325 members of the Class of 2019 signed the Pledge. Class of 2020, are you ready to take the Pledge?
Hometown: Spokane, WA
Majors: Sociology; Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity
Why sign the pledge?: At Stanford, I studied contentious political climates and social issues and their effects on marginalized communities. The education that I have received is one that should be accessible to more people than those served at this institution, and I am committed to ensuring that the lessons I have learned extend beyond the ivory tower. I pledge to use my opportunities and privilege to effectively serve and help build a more just world.
Post-graduation plans: Next year, I will begin working on immigration reform and advocacy as a John Gardner Public Service Fellow."
Hometown: Overland Park, KS
Major: Science, Technology, and Society
Minor: African & African American Studies
Why sign the pledge?: Stanford has afforded me opportunities and privileges that I could have never dreamed of growing up. It has also taught me that it’s our responsibility to work towards a system that affords these opportunities to all people, regardless of identity, socioeconomic background, or zip code. I would not be where I am today without the communities that raised me and I hope to support communities that are doing the very same for the next generations.
Post-graduation plans: For the next year, I’ll be working at a philanthropic organization that does work in education and/or children and family well-being as a Tom Ford Fellow.
Hometown: Burbank, CA
Minors: Human Rights; Global Studies
Why sign the pledge?: I signed the service pledge because I want to continue using my Stanford education to empower, advocate, and serve communities of all abilities. I hope to dedicate my future career towards mitigating health disparities that continue to burden the most vulnerable, both in the United States and globally.
Post-graduation plans: After graduation, I will be working towards local health equity as a Stanford Community Impact Fellow at the Ravenswood Family Health Center.
Hometown: San Francisco Bay Area
Majors: English; Creative Writing
Why sign the pledge?: I signed the pledge because I knew that after I graduated I wanted to work toward social justice in the Bay Area... I grew up here, love it deeply, and also know that it’s a place of deep inequity.
Post-graduation plans: I’m excited to do a Community Impact Fellowship at LifeMoves to help address the housing crisis, one of the most serious problems that plagues our community. I'm also excited to find out what it’s like to work full time at a nonprofit, as I figure out how I will pursue a social-justice-oriented career.