Dear PULSE Community,

With a mix of gratitude for your unwavering support and a heavy heart, we have an announcement regarding  an important decision for PULSE. After careful consideration, consultations with our staff, Board of Directors, funders, and third-party consultants, we have come to the difficult decision that PULSE will be sunsetting at the end of the current program year.

We were founded 30 years ago to address two significant needs being faced at the time: Pittsburgh was losing young professionals at a rapid rate, which contributed to the need for educated, skilled workers in our nonprofit sector. At the same time, college graduates across the nation were struggling to find creative, meaningful opportunities for service. Much has changed in the past 30 years and Pittsburgh is a different city than it was when PULSE was founded. Since the COVID pandemic, the landscape has continued to change at an increasingly rapid rate. Many of these changes are positive: the country is facing its lowest unemployment rate in decades and Pittsburgh is drawing and retaining young professionals from across the country and the world to well-paying positions in tech, robotics, banking, and more.

The changing landscape has had a significant impact on PULSE and other service programs nationwide. This has required us to take a hard look at our mission and our role in the community. While the need for talented people to support nonprofits will never end, the truth is that there are significantly more opportunities for people to engage in service experiences than there were 30 years ago. Colleges are now offering co-op and student consultation opportunities. Other service programs have become more widespread and provide benefits that we are unable to offer including ongoing operational funding, higher participant stipends, childcare, medical insurance, and student loan repayment.

Please know:

-All operations will be continuing as usual throughout this year.

-The staff and board are committed to supporting our Fellows and the nonprofits they’re serving.

Your support is still vital to help us fulfill our mission this year and 100% of your contributions will be used to support our Fellows and the important work they’re doing in the community.

Though we are sad to see this chapter close, we are also proud and grateful. We are grateful to you for being part of the PULSE community and helping us achieve the work for which we are proud: 30 years of supporting over 400 Fellows and over 200 nonprofits. Your support has sustained us – and has translated to substantial work throughout the Pittsburgh nonprofit community! Below are some highlights about the PULSE Alumni Community:

-375+ participants have partnered with almost 200 Pittsburgh nonprofits, contributing over 600,000 hours of service to the city and its residents

-134+ still live in Pittsburgh

-196+ are still working in Public Service

-20+ still work for the nonprofit where they were placed as a PULSE Fellow

-Several have started their own nonprofits

-At least 5 couples are still in relationships that began and blossomed during their time serving in PULSE together (2 couples have gotten married!)

Please stay in touch with PULSE throughout the rest of this program year. We will be having a fundraiser to generate support for the current Fellows’ transition funds to help them pay for their next steps after PULSE along with a PULSE farewell party in July to congratulate this year’s class and to come together one more time to celebrate this amazing community who has done so much to make these past 30 years a reason to celebrate. Stay tuned for more information.

Thank you again for being part of the PULSE community and helping us celebrate our Fellows past and present.

On behalf of PULSE,
Aaron Gray, Executive Director
Jess Manuel, Board Chair
Jeremiah Huth, Board Vice-Chair


PULSE's mission is to help increase the capacity of local nonprofits by connecting people with passion to organizations with purpose.

For thirty years, we have invited university graduates and other young professionals to partner with Pittsburgh nonprofits for a year of service, community, and leadership. The criteria to be a PULSE fellow is passion. A passion for change, community, and helping others. This year allows young people to get their foot in the door to a career in nonprofits while providing the foundation to make life-long meaningful relationships with those around them. A PULSE year is one that is challenging, but deeply rewarding personally and professionally. We are so proud of the 400+ fellows that have completed this year of service and the incredible impact they have made along the way.


Give to PULSE

Help us support our last cohort of fellows and honor 30 years of connecting people with passion to organizations with purpose in the Pittsburgh community.