BOSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Giving With Purpose, the massive open online course (MOOC) on effective charitable giving, will feature a new guest speaker interview with actor and philanthropist Patrick Dempsey. Giving With Purpose was created by the Learning by Giving Foundation in partnership with Northeastern University. The free course was developed to raise awareness among the general public about effective charitable giving practices. Registration is now open.
While Patrick Dempsey is best known as an actor and for his role on the television show Grey’s Anatomy, he calls the The Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope & Healing his "life's work." The Dempsey Center provides free cancer support, education and integrative medicine services to anyone impacted by cancer. Though located in Patrick's hometown of Lewiston, Maine, the Dempsey Center's services are available regardless of where treatment is received, not only for those with a cancer diagnosis, but caregivers and families as well. The Dempsey Challenge, an annual run, walk and cycling experience, is the primary fundraiser for the Dempsey Center, enabling the organization to provide its services at no cost.
Patrick explains in his Giving With Purpose interview how his search for a meaningful way to give back led to the creation of The Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope & Healing after his mother was diagnosed with cancer. He also discusses how strategies he relies on as an actor and race car driver translate into his charitable giving, including balancing a willingness to take risks with careful planning and a true commitment to collaboration and teamwork. Patrick's interview will be paired with the sixth and final class.
In addition to Patrick serving as a guest speaker, both The Dempsey Center and The Dempsey Challenge will have students taking the course as part of the Positive Tracks Team. Patrick serves a national spokesperson for Positive Tracks, a national youth-centric nonprofit that helps Generation Next get active and give back using the global power of sport.
"I believe that philanthropy can drive change by empowering everybody in the room to play a role,” says Patrick Dempsey. “The MOOC technology gives us a bigger room and lets us invite more people into it. I'm eager to get the students' feedback about what we're doing in the Dempsey Center so we can continue to improve and touch more lives."
Course instructor and Director of The Social Impact Lab at Northeastern University, Rebecca Riccio, is excited to add Patrick Dempsey to the unique list of guest speakers.
“The Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope & Healing is intended to make people feel comfortable and cared for. Patrick is the same way as a person. He openly shared his deeply personal journey as a philanthropist,” says Riccio. “I think participants will find it fascinating not just because he's a well-known actor, but because he is so grounded and thoughtful about how to use his resources to make a difference."
Patrick’s interview complements the course lessons and remarkable list of guest speakers that includes Warren Buffett, Doris Buffett, Cal Ripken, Jr., Soledad O’Brien, Ben Cohen & Jerry Greenfield and Tom Werner. Giving With Purpose is comprised of six compact classes and a peer-review process for evaluating participant-nominated charities. Participants put their learning into action by awarding the Foundation’s money to local nonprofits.
Registration is open now. You must be registered for the course to help determine which charities will receive grants.
About the Learning by Giving Foundation
The Learning by Giving Foundation seeks to advance the next generation’s understanding of philanthropy by providing the financial, technological, and intellectual tools to experience community impact and to make that knowledge widely accessible through an online forum. Doris Buffett created the first Learning by Giving Foundation program in 2003 and has since partnered with over 30 colleges and universities around the country. Each class receives a $10,000 grant for the students to distribute to local nonprofit organizations. The Foundation launched Giving With Purpose, a free online philanthropy course, in 2013. Over 10,000 people took the first course and distributed $130,000 to 40 nonprofit organizations.