Alumni Engagement

Welcome to Vanguard University's Alumni Community!

We exist to connect our alumni community to one another and to the University.
Through events, benefits, and relationships we seek to deepen your alumni experience. Create an account to connect with alumni, update your information, register for events, and more today!

2018 Alumni Award Honorees

April Bjornstad '94 - Alumnus of the Year

April Bjornstad
Click to read bio

For more than 20 years, April has worked at tech companies at the intersection of corporate development, strategy and finance.

In her current role at Microsoft, April leads the finance team supporting the Intellectual Property Group. She is responsible for strategic and long term planning, management of IP acquisitions, equity investments and licensing deals, and controllership across the IPG team.

Prior to Microsoft, April managed Mergers and Acquisitions teams at Applied Materials and Sybase where she led the deal teams resulting in $11 billion in corporate M&A. April’s move to M&A was preceded by an 11-year Corporate Finance consulting career at Ernst & Young. One of her favorite career moves was also her shortest, a 9 month secondment to a tech startup in Buenos Aires where she had the opportunity to build the startup’s business model and write their business plan, all while attempting to learn enough Spanish to minimize embarrassing moments at grocery stores and on buses!

April graduated with a BA in Finance from Vanguard University in 1994 and an MBA from Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University in 1999. As a first-generation college grad in her family, April credits her time at Vanguard with helping her to think critically and for giving her an early leadership opportunity as an RA her Junior year.

On a personal level, April lives in Seattle WA with her tech entrepreneur husband Shakil Haroon, their daughter Juliette and three grown stepsons. As a family, they love to hike, ski, and travel to warmer, sunnier climates whenever possible.

Alysia Ruiz '11 - Young Alumnus of the Year

Alysia Ruiz
Click to read bio

Alysia Ruiz ’11 is the Senior Social Media Manager at Lionsgate in the Theatrical Marketing department, overseeing all talent, filmmaker, and influencer social media promotions and activations on behalf of the studio. She has worked on the marketing campaigns for over 50 theatrical release films, including The Hunger Games, Power Rangers, La La Land, Wonder, and many more. Prior to Lionsgate, Aly was the Digital Producer at The Ellen DeGeneres Show, overseeing and cultivating Ellen’s massive Digital Network including websites, social media, apps, and on-air broadcast/digital integrations, where her work earned her Emmy Award wins for three consecutive years in the “New Approaches to a Daytime Series or Talkshow” category. Since graduating from Vanguard, Aly has remained an active member of the campus community, most recently serving as a Peer Mentor for undergrad Communications students. When she is not working, she is resuming her never-ending hunt for the best tacos in all of LA.

Cynthia (Larson) Frenn '86 - Distinguished Service

Cindy Frenn
Click to read bio

Cindee Frenn (born September 5, 1963) is an Ordained Minister, was raised in Latin America, and is the daughter of pioneer missionaries. Now a full time missionary, she divides her time as a minister, missionary, PhD student, wife and mother of three.

Cindee and her husband Jason and their three daughters have been missionaries since 1990. Their ministry, entitled Power to Change, organizes citywide campaigns. They have held more than 75 international outreaches where more than 600,000 people have made first time decisions for Christ. Under Cindee’s leadership the children’s portion of their evangelistic outreaches, Club E, has seen more than 50,000 children make first time decisions for Christ.

Cindee is also pursuing her Doctor of Philosophy in Intercultural Studies (Ph.D./ICS) at the Assemblies of God Theological Seminary. The purpose of her study is to form a theory of personal missional identity development by examining the experiences of Assemblies of God World Missions adult missionary kids of the Latin America Caribbean region.

Jason Frenn '88 - Distinguished Service

Jason Frenn
Click to read bio

Jason Frenn (born October 24, 1966 in Los Angeles, California) is an international missionary evangelist, author, and conference speaker, whose live ministry events have attracted a cumulative worldwide audience of over 6 million people. As a bilingual evangelist, he is widely known throughout the Spanish-speaking areas in the United States and Latin America. His ministry, entitled Power to Change, organizes citywide campaigns. He has held more than 75 international outreaches where more than 600,000 people have made first time decisions for Christ. Jason has preached twelve open-air campaigns in Cuba since 2008

He is also an occasional guest voice for the Washington Post. Frenn is a member of the Assemblies of God World Missions, but speaks for a wide variety of churches, denominations, and non-profit organizations. He serves as a motivational and corporate affiliate speaker for the Ziglar Corporation and co-founded the Ziglar Speakers Institute.

In addition to being a missionary evangelist, Jason is a bestselling author, spoke on the television program Hour of Power and has been a guest voice for the Washington Post. He has a daily live evangelistic radio program on Radio Nueva Vida with a listening audience of 1,000,000 people covering most of North America and Northern Mexico.

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Connect With Us

Vanguard Networker is an online community and directory to connect Vanguard friends, provide career opportunities, and connect with the university in a meaningful way. Register with LinkedIn or Facebook to gain immediate access to see Vanguard activity. This hub will provide the latest Vanguard news, opportunities to connect with alumni and current students alike, event information, and career opportunities.

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Vanguard Magazine is a quarterly printed magazine of robust Vanguard stories. We build on our tagline that at Vanguard, your story matters. Our alumni, students, faculty, and staff are making a difference in education, the arts, ministry, business, and more. Read stories of Christ-centered leadership and see how God is using them in powerful ways to shape this world.


Career Services provides free resources for our alumni and students. If you are going through a transition, allow them to empower and equip you to discover your interests, values, and abilities to transition into meaningful life work. They exist to provide relevant resources, avenues for exploration and experienced career advising.

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Get Involved

Pray for Vanguard

Join Vanguard alumni around the world who lift up our community in prayer. Pray for President Beals and the rest of our administration for wisdom in leading our university. Pray for our faculty that they would be renewed and empowered to impact our students for a Christ-centered life of leadership. Pray for our students that they might experience Christ in powerful ways, finding insights and freedom. Pray for our staff that they might experience strength and Christ in the work of the university. Pray for favor with donors and supporters to grow the university.

Disciple A Student

Join our Story Shapers program. Mentor a student 1-1 by listening, sharing God’s insights on your life, and helping a student thrive at Vanguard. This semester-long relationship involves eight meetings, and training is provided.

Refer A Student

You experienced the power of the Vanguard community. You also know students who would thrive here at Vanguard! Your insights and recommendations of students helps others experience the vibrant Vanguard community that equips Christ-centered leaders in every aspect of society.

Meet Our Team

Alyssa Aragon

Titles: Alumni Relations Coordinator

Laura Capo

Titles: Director of Alumni Engagement

Heather Clements

Titles: Assistant Director of Alumni Relations


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