- In 2014, Pacific Lutheran University won first place in its category of Master's Institutions in the Second Nature Climate Leadership Awards for its "off and onsetting" educational program for study away air mile carbon mitigation. In addition to purchasing carbon credits to offset the negative effects of air travel, student fees will go toward addressing the social cost of carbon through "onsetting," funding sustainability projects here on campus and in our study away program sites around the world.
Watch PLU's award-winning video on Carbon Onsetting
- In 2013, the Wang Center received the Carol Sheffels Quigg Award for Excellence and Innovation through Pacific Lutheran University. This funding will help support "projects to enhance the quality, efficiencies and sustainable practices" of our Study Away programs and office.
- In the 2013 Open Doors study published by the Institute of International Education, Pacific Lutheran University was ranked #9 amongst United States Master's Institutions for percentage undergraduate participation in study abroad.
- In 2013, Pacific Lutheran University was recognized as a top producer of Peace Corps volunteers, ranking Number 18 on the Peace Corps’ 2013 Top Colleges for small schools for its high number of graduates who participate in volunteer programs around the world. PLU has a long history with the Peace Corps; since 1961 the university has produced around 250 Peace Corps volunteers.
- Pacific Lutheran University was named as a top producer of U.S. Fulbright students for 2012-13 as a master's institution by The Chronicle of Higher Education. In 2012 year, four PLU students were awarded Fulbright Student Fellowships, contributing to the nearly 100 PLU student Fulbright recipients since 1975. Sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, the Fulbright program was established in 1946 by the U.S. Congress to “enable the government of the United States to increase mutual understanding between people of the United States and the people of other countries.” It is the largest U.S. international exchange program offering opportunities for students, scholars and professionals to undertake international graduate study, advanced research, university teaching and teaching in elementary and secondary schools worldwide.
- In 2009, Pacific Lutheran University matched a $1 million grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to create a $2 million dollar endowment to assist low-income students to participate in study away programs. The Global Scholars Awards began assisting students to study away in the Fall 2009 semester.
- In 2009, Pacific Lutheran University became the first university is Washington state and the first private university on the west coast to receive the prestigious Senator Paul Simon Award for Campus Internationalization, recognizing the decades of hard work that staff and faculty across campus have contributed towards global education. A profile of PLU appeared in the publication, Internationalizing the Campus, published in Fall 2009 by NAFSA: Association of International Educators.
- In January 2006, Pacific Lutheran University became the first higher education institution to have students studying simultaneously on all 7 continents, an achievement that was subsequently repeated in 2008 and will also occur in 2010. The course in Antarctica that makes this achievement possible is a class in Environmental Literature, taught by Dr. Charles Bergman, Professor of English.