PDF Print Email

Eugene (Gene) J. Alpert 
August 6, 1948 – October 9, 2020

Gene Alpert’s many friends in NSEE are tremendously sad to learn about his passing on October 9, 2020.  Gene had an immeasurable impact on NSEE and on the field of experiential education.    He was brilliant, funny, passionate and kind.  Gene was a connector, building partnerships and developing networks with creativity and enthusiasm.  He laughed easily and would stop whatever he was doing at any time to have a conversation and show genuine interest in every person he met.

Most recently, Gene was Vice President of the Osgood Center for International Studies in Washington DC.  He was also Vice President Emeritus for the Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars, after retiring from that organization as Senior Vice President in 2013.  A former professor of political science and department chair at Texas Christian University, Gene authored numerous articles pertaining to experiential education and the political process.

Gene was President of NSEE from 2002-2004.  As Senior Vice President for the Washington Center for Internships & Academic Seminars, Gene was instrumental in developing the decades-long partnership between that organization and NSEE.   He also represented NSEE on the Board of Directors for the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS) and was the principal author of the Internship Standards published by CAS and widely used by institutions around the country.

Gene was the first recipient of the Michael Steuerman Award for Distinguished Service to NSEE in 2008, in recognition of his tireless dedication to the Society and his stewardship during the challenging years of the early 2000’s.  Gene was appointed an NSEE Distinguished Scholar in 2016 and in another fitting tribute was the 2020 recipient of the John S. Duly Award for Lifetime Achievement.  He received that award on September 22 of this year.

Al Cabral, former NSEE Board Member said of Gene, “Personally, Gene was my mentor and guide in NSEE.  We first met in a shared van from the San Antonio airport to the hotel at the NSEE Annual Conference in 2000.  It was my first year on the Board of Directors and Gene became my sage, as he has for many others over the years.  That was the beginning of a 20-year relationship as colleagues and friends.”

Mary King, a close friend and long-time colleague of Gene’s and former NSEE Board member offered this in his memory: “Gene fully embraced the field of experiential education ---he believed in the cause and lived it in all of his professional affiliations. A loyal friend to and supporter of NSEE for decades, Gene worked tirelessly to make a difference that mattered to the Society and the field -- whether in the public's eye or behind the scenes.  A humble colleague and friend, he considered his accomplishments and contributions simply as what he should do -- as his responsibility to the work he loved.  His gentle, thoughtful, caring ways will be missed.”

We mourn Gene’s passing and the loss of a dear friend but take heart that his influence with NSEE will remain vibrant through the many programs and partnerships he developed and relationships he built.

Gene’s family has suggested the following for donations in his memory:

National Society for Experiential Education for scholarship support. www.nsee.org

Jewish Genealogy Society of Greater Washington for program support. www.jgsgw.org

Texas Christian University ( the honors college) www.tcu.edu

Osgood Center for International Studies for scholarships. www.osgoodcenter.org

Courtesy of Tony Cerise, a former colleague of Gene's at The Washington Center