The Pathways to Purpose Speaker Series brings dynamic alumni and other exemplary practitioners of leadership and service to campus to help expand student imagination about pursuing purposeful work and a meaningful life in response to the deepest challenges of our time.

Pathways to Purpose events offer a variety of touchpoints for students, faculty, and members of the Valparaiso community, including informal conversations around lunch or dinner, classroom visits, interview-format discussions, and formal presentations. We welcome a wide cross-section of attendees, believing that when we bring together students, professors and people engaged in these issues outside a university context, we generate the most momentum for engagement, learning, and change.

Playlist of Video From P2P 2018-19

Previous Pathways to Purpose speakers cover a wide range of disciplines and interests. Past guests include:

  • James Clarke, Director of Ghana Programs for Unite for Sight
  • Catherine Deamant, Director of Palliative Care Services for Cook County Hospital
  • Mike Del Ponte, Social Entrepreneur and Founder of SOMA Water
  • Anna DeLuna ’11, Director of Business Development for Edovo
  • Rebecca Deng, Author of What They Meant for Evil
  • Robert Egger, Founder of LA Kitchen
  • Derrick Feldmann, Lead Researcher and Creator of The Millennial Impact Project
  • Nicole M. Garcia, Counselor and Trans Activist
  • Jason Greer ’96, Employment and Diversity Consultant and Writer at The Good Men Project
  • Pamela Hack ’84, Foreign Service Officer & Chief, U.S. Consulate, General in Amsterdam, the Netherlands
  • Rozella Haydee White, Public Theologian
  • Larry James, community organizer and Founder of CitySquare
  • David King, Director of the Lake Institute on Faith and Giving
  • Kristin Kobes Du Mez, History Professor and Author of Jesus and John Wayne: How White Evangelicals Corrupted a Faith and Fractured a Nation
  • Matt Kramer, Co-CEO of Teach for America
  • Evan Narciss, Author of Rise of the Black Panther
  • Andy Nunemaker ’91, Philanthropist and CEO of Dynamis Software Corporation
  • Francis Su, Author of Mathematics for Human Flourishing
  • Jemar Tisby, President of the Witness: A Black Christian Collective
  • Jim Walker, Founder and Executive Director of the BigCar Collaborative
  • Taj Weekes, Grammy-Winning Reggae Artist and Humanitarian
  • Carolyn Woo, President & CEO of Catholic Relief Services
  • Aaron Yazzie, Engineer in NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory

If you have an interest in participating in a Pathways to Purpose event — as a speaker, attendee or co-host — please contact David Henreckson at