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PATRICK COOK-DEEGAN

Founder + Director

Patrick is a leader in reimagining adolescent education through the lens of purpose learning. In 2015-2016, Patrick was an education innovation fellow at Stanford's d.school striving to answer a specific question: How do we help high school students craft meaningful lives? A year later, Project Wayfinder was born.

Patrick is a serial social entrepreneur. Over the last decade, he launched a number of programs and organizations including Inward Bound Mindfulness Education, Back to Earth, and Brown University’s Social Innovation Initiative. He also spent five years working as a human rights advocate in Burma. These experiences became the ingredients and backbone for the launch of Project Wayfinder at the Stanford d.school. Patrick is a longtime wilderness guide who has been deeply influenced by the history and practices of native traditions around the world. He is a graduate of the Tracking Project’s community mentoring training– a program focused on how to respectfully and thoughtfully bring native wisdom into the modern world.

Patrick has spoken at more than 100 schools including Duke, Yale, and UCLA. He has been featured in  Washington PostBoston Globe, and NPR and written for Fast Company , Stanford Social Innovation ReviewEdutopiaUC Berkeley’s Greater Good and the recently published book Purpose Rising. Patrick is an All-American high school lacrosse player, Fulbright Scholar, Brown University graduate, and lecturer at Stanford University. He is currently co-teaching a course called "Finding Your Purpose" at Stanford University.

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