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HEAA Engagement Survey

Mark Benson

The deadline for this survey is March 26, 2023 at 11:59PM ET.

Dear Harvard Extension Alumni Association (HEAA) Scholar,

As a member of our Harvard Extension Alumni Association (HEAA) community, you are a graduate of Harvard University, a place where you have already proven you possess the intellectual acumen, the strength of character, and the positively-inspired motivation, to guide you wherever and whenever you take a step in your lifetime learning journey to brighten our world. Our HEAA Board of Directors reaffirms our commitment to you, as we are all invested in a lifelong relationship with Harvard Extension School, one of the 12 degree-granting schools of Harvard University and the one appearing on the diploma you received at graduation.  Our HEAA Board is dedicated to the values Harvard University and Harvard Extension School represent and inspired to make the future brighter for each and every one of you.[I]  

We would like to invite you to participate in a three-pronged series of HEAA Surveys on Regional Engagement and Lifetime Learning (and Career Support) to identify where you stand in your journey, what your wants and needs are from our HEAA now and in the foreseeable future, so we as an HEAA Board may better serve you, and feed your dreams for yourselves and the communities where you live so all will have opportunities for a better quality of life in the places around our globe where you work, play and live.  

The first of the three prongs of our series of HEAA surveys elicits information helpful to our HEAA Regional Engagement Committee.  Our HEAA Board of Directors Regional Engagement Team Leader, Ariel Gamino, and his Team members Frank Caprino, Heather Friedmann and Svetlana Javakhian, are eager to know your wants and needs so they will work together successfully with other members of our HEAA Board and me to create a more responsive future for our community consistent with the vision and mission of Harvard Extension School.  While your participation in the first prong of our three-pronged series is completely voluntary, you should know we want to encourage each and every one of you always feel invested in our HEAA activities and our common future at Harvard University and Harvard Extension School.

The second and third prongs of our series of surveys will contribute to the growth and popularity of our Lifetime Learning (and Career Support) activities.   As I am the first to hold the position of HEAA Director of Lifetime Learning (and Career Support), I am invested in ensuring HEAA alums served by my committee will realize their hopes and aspirations for more educational achievement and meaningful career placements.  If you do respond to the second and third surveys, my HEAA Board colleagues and I will know the programming you believed was helpful, as well as your anticipated future wants and needs, so we will plan and implement a responsive, appropriate agenda to prepare us for our shared future at Harvard University and Harvard Extension School as we move forward into in the second decade of the 21st century.  You are always welcome to communicate your positive, forward-thinking advice, comments and suggestions via email at 

I would like to close my letter by thanking you.  Thank you for the time, care and attention you have given to complete your studies for each of your Harvard Extension Degrees, Special Programs or Certificates.  Thank you, too, for your participation in past Harvard programming.  Finally, thank you for considering if you would like participate in our three-pronged series of HEAA Surveys and so we, your allies and companions in your lifetime learning journey, will possess helpful information we need to create future programming you will find appealing.  If we get your survey responses, we will also thank you, as it ensures our future programming will be animated by the principles shining through Harvard Extension School’s history as an educational institution with a welcoming, positive, forward-thinking community of scholars committed to light the lamp of knowledge and creativity to prepare us to go forth successfully and make our world brighter.

Mark Benson ALM ’11
Harvard Extension Alumni Association
Director of Lifetime Learning (and Career Support)

[i]           The 12 Schools of Harvard University under the banner of “One Harvard” are dedicated to life-sustaining values to guide us as we stride confidently into the future, values I would like to illustrate with fun, fast facts about our Harvard Extension School.  Scholars gravitate to the 12 Schools of Harvard University to become their best possible selves.  As one of the oldest Schools of Harvard University, Harvard Extension School has long been recognized as a welcoming, positive, forward-thinking, inclusive, technologically-savvy educational institution, where its community members are devoted to honing their intellectual acumen, strengthening their character, and exuding the positively-inspired motivation, to prepare to take successful, progressive action to make improvements to help people living on Planet Earth. 

A fun, fast fact—the makings of Harvard Extension School came into being at the beginning of the 19th century, courtesy of the inspired philanthropy of the Lowells, a family of benevolent benefactors with a vision to make opportunities at Harvard for intellectual stimulation as well as personal and professional growth available to the general public.

Inspired by the Lowells generous gift, the educational institution we now know as Harvard Extension School has been illuminated by two guiding educational philosophies.  Our Harvard Extension School has shone as beacon of light in the world of academia as a model for inclusion and technological innovation. 

A second fun, fast fact–toward the midpoint in the 19th century, Harvard University Summer School (, later one of the four Divisions made part of the educational institution formed in 1910 as Harvard Extension School, was the first Harvard University School or Division to open its doors to female learners.

A third fun, fast fact–scholars at Harvard Extension residing at all points on the compass around our globe have long taken courses remotely via the latest advances technology—a progression from radio, to television, then followed by computer modem, and now, the internet.

You, as members of our HEAA community of alums, are invested in our past, present and future at Harvard Extension School, with a community of scholars devoted to realizing future educational achievements and meaningful career steps to inspire its members to make improvements in our world destined to solve pressing social, economic and environmental concerns evident in the 21st century.

Our current Harvard Extension School course catalogue ( reflects how we at Harvard Extension School continue to fulfill our historical commitment to give scholars exposure to Harvard’s erudition and opportunities for personal and professional career growth.   We as School continue our longstanding commitment to inclusion by making our courses accessible to people of all backgrounds, with an emphasis on helping scholars who are differently-abled succeed academically and professionally.  We also recognize a good number of our current courses feature instruction now depending upon the latest in internet technology, helpful to people from all backgrounds and accessible wherever an internet connection is available in the world. 

We at Harvard Extension School are with you wherever you may be whenever you take a step forward in your lifetime learning journey.  We welcome you at Harvard Extension School, one of the 12 Schools of Harvard University and a place with a community dedicated to help you realize your dreams and aspirations for future educational achievements and meaningful career steps.  We are here to help you, as a scholar with a Harvard University diploma, fulfill your destiny as you strive to take positive, forward-thinking action to solve our world’s most pressing concerns.