Starting June 1, Cassie McVeety will be taking over as Pacific’s vice president of university advancement. She took a few minutes to answer a few questions about her background, goals and view of Pacific.

1. What are you looking forward to in your new position?

I am very much looking forward to being a part of the Pacific community and working closely with President Hallick, the staff in University Advancement and the volunteers on the Board of Trustees, alumni board and all of our various community groups to advance Pacific’s mission.

2. Tell me a little about your background and why you think you were chosen to be our new Vice President of University Advancement.

I have a career in higher education advancement that spans more than 25 years at both private and public institutions. Specifically, I come with very relevant experience as I was previously the Vice President for University Relations at Portland State where I successfully led their first comprehensive fundraising campaign as well as an integrated marketing and branding effort. Having grown up in Washington County and working in the Portland metro area for most of my life, I also have a broad network of business and philanthropic contacts that can assist the university with our outreach and fundraising.

3. Is there anything that you are nervous about regarding the position?

I don’t think I am nervous at all about the position—in fact I am incredibly excited about the opportunity to get started!

4. What do you think Pacific’s weaknesses are from what you have seen? Its strengths?

The university has incredible strengths: We are very lucky to have an incredible and brilliant president and the leadership team in place is second to none. I am very impressed with each member of the faculty with whom I have met in all areas of the university both undergraduate and in the professional and graduate programs. We had the pleasure of attending the Pacific Lu’au a couple weeks ago and we were blown away by not only the talent and dedication of the students—but the spirit and enthusiasm expressed that evening. There really is a Pacific ‘Ohana’ and it is a huge asset to the entire community.

5. Most institutions are fundraising during this recessed economic climate. How do you plan to make Pacific stand out?

All colleges and universities, whether public or private, are engaged in fundraising and it is incumbent upon each institution to use their distinctive brand as well as the key goals and initiatives (like building our endowment, creating the new Health Professions Center building and renovating science labs and equipment) that are vital to the future of the university to make Pacific stand out. We also have unique opportunities in that we have very dedicated and loyal alumni and friends who believe so strongly in our mission that we’ll have great ways to engage and involve individuals, companies, foundations and donors in new, innovative and exciting ways.

6. During your visit to campus in February, you said that athletics and the performing arts are “vitally important.” How will this belief shape your work on the campaign?

When I mentioned athletics and the performing arts are vitally important, I was talking expressly about the unique ways that these events, activities and competitions can be the window to the university for many that may not know us yet. Whether it is the Mozart Requiem concert or our upcoming Boxer alumni pub talk or Pacific’s NWC league-winning baseball team—we are very lucky to have the opportunity to invite alumni, friends and donors to get to know us by showcasing the talent and hard work of our faculty, staff, students and community partners.

7. From your experiences at Mt. Hood, what are people willing to give for? Not willing to give for? What have you had the most luck with?

In the work we do at Mt. Hood Community College, we spend a great deal of effort raising money for student scholarships which resonates well with many of our donors. With more than 32,000 students attending MHCC—many of whom are the first generation in their family to get a college education—donors are looking for opportunities to directly assist students in making their educational dreams a reality. We, like many community colleges, have not been as focused on raising funds for overall endowment as a priority since the college needs have been so immediate and the case for support for our student s has been so compelling.

8. Is there anything else you believe the Pacific community should know about you or your goals?

I am so excited to have the opportunity to work at Pacific and I can’t wait to get started. Since I start June 1, I will really regret that I will miss meeting a lot of students and faculty who may be off for the summer—but I am very interested in getting to know as many people as possible in my first few weeks there so I am going to try to get around as much as possible—and please come by my office in Marsh to say hello anytime!

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