Never A Spectator: A Civic Engagement Forum

Never a Spectator 2022

Unfortunately, this year’s Never a Spectator event that was originally scheduled for March 15, 2022 has been postponed. Check back soon for details on our next event. Thanks for your understanding!

Why Attend

The Never a Spectator Civic Engagement Forum is a unique opportunity for Pitt students to network with some of the region’s most prominent leaders, including leaders from government and politics, foundation executives, and nonprofit and business leaders. Students join these visionaries and mentors for an evening and dinner reception devoted to sharing a vision for public service, inspiring action, and developing the pipeline of leadership needed to foster sustainable growth and regional transformation as Pittsburgh continues to evolve as one of America’s premier cities. 
During the event, students learn about the incredible legacy of Elsie Hillman and engage in small group discussions with their community mentors from the nonprofit, business, and government sectors to learn how they can jumpstart their own community involvement and make a positive impact. 


  • Connect and grow relationships with established regional leaders
  • Learn how you can make a difference by getting involved with civic engagement programs at Pitt
  • Earn Outside the Classroom Curriculum (OCC) credit - Leadership Development


All University of Pittsburgh students pursuing any major or degree are welcome to register and attend. 

Graduating from being a spectator to being spectacular.

On March 11, 2021, over 100 students and mentors joined the Elsie Forum to talk with each other about advocacy and activism. Our keynote speaker, Emmai Alaquiva, talked about graduating from being a spectator to being spectacular.

These were his five steps on how to go from being a spectator to being spectacular:

  1. Knowledge of Self
  2. Establish your Attributes
  3. Discover the Possibility
  4. Allyship & Advocacy
  5. Activate your Actions

In case you missed the event, check out Emmai's powerful keynote below.