Center for Community & Social Impact


Mission, Goals, and Objectives


The mission of the Center for Community & Social Impact is to work alongside communities to identify and dismantle social injustices and inequities by empowering people to facilitate impactful and sustainable change.

Our goals and objectives include:

  1. Developing strong and sustainable community partnerships.
  2. Engaging in research and scholarship for community impact.
  3. Promoting service models for sustainable change.

Guiding Paradigms

What community needs does the Center for Community & Social Impact address?

  • Social Injustice & Inequities
  • Parent Engagement
  • Kindergarten Readiness
  • Veterans Re-Integration
  • Education
  • Homelessness
  • Youth Trauma
  • Safe Communities

How might the Center for Community & Social Impact demonstrate impact?

  • Utilization of evidence based model to support family and community engagement.
  • Create bodies of research and data that demonstrate changes in outcomes for organizations.
  • Increased community awareness surrounding youth needs and child development.
  • Increased utilization of youth services.
  • Cohesive picture of community needs.

What specifically can the Center for Community & Social Impact do to improve community outcomes?
We look to improve community concerns through the following lenses:

Community Partnerships
Partnering with diverse sectors of communities across the world to support efforts that, increase access, address inequity, highlight injustice and support positive community change from a strength based perspective.

Research & Scholarship
Engaging in culturally empathic research and scholarship to address needs that communities have identified as important and relevant to their ability to thrive and capacity to meet with success. Research and Scholarship might take the form of:

  • local community workshops on relevant concerns,
  • community based participatory action research projects
  • the dedication of a student’s scholarly capstone projects (across schools) to the resolution of a community concern
  • student fieldwork and internship opportunities to serve community needs while meeting the SLO's for the course

Collaborating with communities and organizations to identify needs that align with our student’s fieldwork/internship service requirement. Student practitioners gain invaluable experience in the community and Communities gain a support system of expertise to catalyze their mission and expand their service capacity.

How will Pacific Oaks and the Center for Community & Social Impact know if its program/services have succeeded?

  • Each project will be accompanied by assessment tool that will provide measurements of success.
  • Quantitative and qualitative data will demonstrate program successes and areas for improvement.
  • The development, completion and delivery of a program or service will also demonstrate success in some cases.

How will the Center for Community & Social Impact be funded?
We plan to finance the center in the same way that many other non-profit organizations are funded. Once we build our cadre of projects, and evidence of proven success we will continue to secure grant dollars to fund the projects that lose funding over time and those that require new funding. Any initial funding will support the Center’s capacity to function by a sustainable model.

Current Projects and Partnerships

Young & Healthy:
  • Exploration of survey data on their Trauma Informed Care training to quantify is community impact.
  • Exploring student School Safety Surveys to identify factors that increase student access and safety concerns. Primary Response being evaluated: "Is there anyone in your school who cares about you?"
Pasadena Unified School District (PUSD):
  • Assisting Parent Engagement team to develop holistic plan and evaluative tool to assess impact of evidence based Parent Engagement policies and practices.
  • Assisting in structuring a plan and evaluative tool to support outcomes for PUSD "low performing students" for whom the district secured a $1M grant to support
Heritage Housing Partners (HHP):
  • Assisting in the development of community needs assessments for over 250 low to middle income new home owning families.
  • Develop workshops on a variety of areas within our expertise.
Leadership Pasadena:
  • Coordinating data and outcomes to develop an evaluative tool for their Veterans Reintegration & Employment Preparation programs.
  • Potential opportunity to conduct similar work with existing program in Pennsylvania and new program in Santa Barbara

Partnerships with Academic Affairs at Pacific Oaks College

Faculty Research
  • Our projects will tap into the expertise of many of our faculty.
  • We will be looking for grant dollars to support the next steps in these relationships in the lanes of data collection, interpretation and analysis.
  • This would also support any future efforts to PO becoming a doctoral granting institution.
Fieldwork (HD & CP)
  • In the building of our community partnerships we continue to discuss our fieldwork/Internship students who often have trouble finding sites to complete their 45 hours (not sure of the amount in CP).
  • Organizations with whom we are building relationships would benefit from our students at the MA and BA levels.
Student Research
  • We would like to ensure that the student community has awareness of our local community needs, many of which are aligned. This would be a great opportunity to ensure that our students get to see their research operationalized, nothing more fulfilling in academia.
  • We would eventually like to have a data base of community needs for students to sort

Collaborate PASadena is an inclusive network of voices from Pasadena, Altadena, and Sierra Madre

Based on a Collective Impact model, Collaborate PASadena is an inclusive network of voices from Pasadena, Altadena, and Sierra Madre engaged in securing access and resources, and creating opportunities for children and families. For more information, visit the Collaborate PASadena website.

Collaborate PASadena is a framework of  Leadership Council and Work Groups

Leadership Council

  • Pasadena Unified School District
  • City of Pasadena
  • Altadena Town Council
  • City of Sierra Madre
  • Business Leaders
  • Parent Leaders
  • Youth Leaders
  • Higher Education
  • Faith-based Organizations

Work Groups

Early Learning

Working through the City of Pasadena's Office of the Young Child, this group supports the improvement of access to early childhood development (children 0-5) programs for all families.

Healthy Families

In partnership with Young & Healthy, this group focuses on the physical, mental, social and emotional needs of children and families by bringing together community wide case managers representing all types of services. We share information so that we may understand the resources that exist in the community and beyond.

Student Success

Comprised of school, city, nonprofit, parent and other community representatives, this group contributes to the academic success of all students, and identifies opportunities for students to be actively engaged in school and the community.

Parent & Community Leaders

Partnering with the Pasadena Unified School District’s Office of Family and Community Engagement, this effort adds community partners, resources and information to their work to benefit children and their families

Supportive Communities

With representatives from neighborhoods, faith community, the City of Pasadena, schools and youth, this group focuses on ways to connect people toward developing safe, stable and supportive neighborhoods.
Established in 2018, the Center for Community and Social Impact at Pacific Oaks College is a dynamic hub of scholarship, research, and strategic partnership focused on identifying and eliminating systemic inequities and advancing effective and meaningful change by:
  • Fostering strong and sustainable community partnerships.​
  • Engaging in research and scholarship for community impact.​
  • Developing service models for sustainable change.
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Our Staff

  • Geoff Albert Director, Community Engagement
  • Evelyn Mendez Senior Success Coach
  • Jeremiah Cajigal Success Coach
  • Joli Selten-Forbes Success Coach

Our Faculty Collaborators

  • Angel Hall Psy.D.
  • Jerell Hill Ed.D.
  • Sandra Hill-Glover EMSW
  • Giovanni Hortua Ph.D.
  • Camille Huggins MSW
  • Judith Krause Ed.D.
  • Cassandra Peel Ph.D.
  • Eugenia Rodriguez Psy.D., LMFT
  • Ja Ne’t Rommero Psy.D.

Student Success Collaboration

The Student Success Collaborative (SCS) is a cooperative project with the Pasadena Unified School District. Our goal is to address a wide range of issues that interfere with students’ ability to be successful in an educational setting. Specifically, the project aims to improve academic performance by serving the whole child and the relevant environments, impacting outcomes through a culturally empathic, strengths-based lens. The SCS places the students and their families at the center of service design and delivery.


The CHAMP (Community Health Action Mental Perseverance) Workshop is the first of its kind, using creativity to process events and experiences related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Through a series of narrative workshops, parents and guardians have a supportive space to use their voice, tell their story, and share lessons learned during this challenging time.

Community Schools

Staff Development for Community School Advocates
Each community school has an embedded advocate who aligns resources with the school’s needs. The Center for Community and Social Impact (CCSI) provides a year-long series of culturally responsive and transformative trainings for these advocates focused on developing school-community partnerships that address the school’s identified needs.

Family Literacy Events
Pacific Oaks’ CCSI has organized large-scale community events promoting family literacy as essential to community health. The events featured storytelling, arts, and social services that support family literacy.

Partnership Development
Pacific Oaks’ CCSI provides backbone support for Collaborate PASadena, the collective impact initiative of individuals, organizations, and businesses serving the children of the cities of Pasadena, Altadena, and Sierra Madre. CCSI was identified as the lead partner for all schools in the Pasadena Unified School District. The goal of a lead partner is to build and strengthen relationships, help mobilize community assets, and coordinate school resources. In this role, Collaborate PASadena provides formal and informal relationship development between public and private community resources and the schools.

Community Initiatives

Community Health Councils – Learning for Equity
The Community Health Councils’ Social Change Institute partnered with CCSI to design the curriculum for a series of workshops to support capacity building for the Best Start Community Partnerships. There are four modules and a total of 12 workshops that address the core competencies needed to position the Best Start Community Partnerships for future success.

Collaborate PASadena
Collaborate PASadena is a collective impact initiative created by Pasadena Unified School District and the City of Pasadena comprising individuals, organizations, and businesses dedicated to improving the lives of children and families. CCSI has served as the backbone of this initiative since its inception.
More info

Pasadena: City of Learning
Pasadena: City of Learning is a consortium of Pasadena organizations involved in education and learning, either as a primary purpose or an important ancillary activity. Its mission is to foster a communitywide climate for lifetime learning based on current resources and the potential for new learning opportunities from new partnerships and collaborations.

Pasadena: City of Learning was started in 2005 by Mayor Bill Bogaard and Erica Clark, vice president of Art Center College of Design, with the help of early members from Caltech, the Pasadena Unified School District Board of Education, the Pasadena Library, and others. CCSI has been the host and facilitator of the program since 2019.

Bringing our Expertise to Inform Policy Change
The goals of CCSI include developing strong and sustainable community partnerships, engaging in research and scholarship for community impact, and promoting service models for sustainable change. To support these goals, CCSI has informed policy and practice changes in our community, assisting the Pasadena Unified School District, The Pasadena City Council, and the Pasadena Community Foundation.