Social Transformation Certificate

Wilmette Institute is pleased to announce an updated application process for its pilot Academic Certificate Program. 

Our current course catalog (3-credit courses): 

Approaches to Non-violent Social Change
Reconstructing Blackness: Anti-Racism and Unity in the US
Human Prosperity and Sustainable Development
Education for Spiritual and Material Prosperity

To obtain a certificate, participants must pass any three courses, and they can be taken in any order. There is no start date for the program, rather participants may enroll at any time. Participants can take up to three years from enrollment to complete the program. 

We are now inviting interested students to apply to the program using the link provided below. 


We have a total of 15 full scholarships available. Upon enrollment, some of the scholarships may be available, and will be awarded on a first come, first served basis for qualified applicants.

Donations are welcome and can be directly made to the WI student scholarship fund. For more details please contact the Registrar, at:

At present, only students resident in the United States and Canada are being accepted into the certificate program.

This is a graduate level program, so a Bachelor’s degree is required. We can also accept currently enrolled undergraduate students in their junior or senior year.

Wilmette Institute is currently seeking accreditation. Therefore successful students in the program will be awarded a certificate of completion and transcript. Until we receive accreditation, there is no guarantee that credits earned from the WI certificate program will be transferable to any higher education institution.

All students with a scholarship will be required to provide feedback on each course and the entire certificate program. Feedback will be used to assess and improve our offerings as we complete the accreditation application process.

In order to streamline the certificate application process, the requirement to submit official university transcripts can be deferred until completion of the first course. If you do have certified copies of transcripts available, you may of course submit them with your application. All other elements of the application process will remain in place. 

Dates and Deadlines:  

Program start date = Tuesday, September 5, 2023
Registration deadline = Monday August 21st

Late registrations may be accepted up to September 1st, unless the program is full.


Chitra Golestani, PhD

WI Associate Director, Faculty, Institute for Humane Education

Dr. Chitra Golestani is currently Associate Director of the Wilmette Institute and an Adjunct Faculty at the Institute for Humane Education/Antioch University. She also works as an educational consultant, guest lecturer, qualitative researcher, and a co-founder of the Paulo Freire Institute (PFI) at UCLA - an organization committed to social justice education locally and globally. Her areas of interest, lectures and research include Human Rights, Social Justice and Global Citizenship Education, Conflict Resolution and Restorative Justice, Youth Activism in Extended Education, Conscious Living and Social Action. She holds a PhD in Social Science and Comparative Education from UCLA and a Master’s in Education from University of California, Santa Barbara. Her areas of interest, lectures and research include Human Rights, Social Justice and Global Citizenship Education, Conflict Resolution and Restorative Justice, Youth Activism in Extended Education, Conscious Living and Social Action. In September 2019, she began a new administrative position as Associate Director of the Wilmette Institute. Her work is inspired by her lived experience with persecution in the country of her birth, Iran, where members of the Bahá’í Faith are not allowed to practice, are prohibited from accessing higher education, and denied other civil rights. While still a young child, her family escaped this marginalization and fled to the US in search of religious freedom, equality between women and men and human rights. Currently, Dr. Golestani is engaged in numerous grass-roots programs aimed at raising human capacity, locally and globally, to work towards a more just, united, and sustainable planet. Listen to Chitra's interview on "A Bahá’í Perspective."See Faculty Bio


Justin Scoggin, PhD

As Chief Academic Officer of the Wilmette Institute Justin has helped develop learning outcomes for community and credit-bearing courses and programs and helped align them to the current set of global Plans. Justin is currently exploring pedagogical principles for online learning coherent with the learning outcomes. Justin worked with FUNDAEC as teacher and program administrator, worked as principal in K-12 schools in Ecuador. Justin has a PhD in Education from the University of Idaho. See also Justin's Personal Educational Philosophy.See Faculty Bio