2019 University and Faculty Fall Conference

September 3 -4 with Post-Conference Workshops September 5-6

For many of us, the academic year officially begins with University Conference. All faculty and staff members are invited and encouraged to attend. Please see the current schedule of events below.

*Please note that in an effort to be sustainable, printed copies of the schedule will not be available at University Conference this year. Printable versions of the schedule are available below.

New Faculty Orientation is held August 28-29, 2019.


Guy Nave Jr.

Professor of Religion, Luther College

Dr. Guy Nave is a professor of religion at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa. His research focuses on the topics of Christianity, religion and social justice, the social construction of religious meaning, and race-religion-and-politics. Dr. Nave is currently researching the power, politics, and meaning behind the rhetoric of “change.”

8:15 - 8:45 a.m. Chapel

Ness Family Chapel
Karen Hille Phillips Center for the Performing Arts

8:45 a.m. - 10:00 p.m. Reception, Welcome, and Presidential Address

Olson Auditorium

8:45 – 9:05 a.m. – Reception

9:05 – 9:15 a.m. – Welcome
Katrina Hay, Associate Professor of Physics
Daniel Heath, Professor of Mathematics

9:15 – 9:45 a.m. – Presidential Address
President Allan Belton

10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Keynote Speaker

Olson Auditorium

Guy Nave Jr.
Professor of Religion, Luther College
Change by Practicing Change

12:00 - 1:00 p.m. - Lunch and Conversation

Olson Auditorium

5:00 - 7:00 p.m. - President's Reception

Join members of the PLU community at our traditional welcome back event. Spouses/partners are welcome.

1:00 - 1:30 p.m. - Faculty Committee Organizational Meetings

Academic Performance and Integrity – Anderson University Center 201
Convener, Tom Edgar

Core Curriculum – Hauge Administration Building 211 A
Convener, Scott Rogers

Educational Policies – Hauge Administration Building 211 B
Convener, Svend Ronning

Faculty Affairs – Hauge Administration Building 208
Convener, Priscilla St. Clair

Governance – Anderson University Center 212
Convener, Agnes Choi

Global Education – Anderson University Center 213
Convener, Erik Hammerstrom

Instructional Resources– Hauge Administration Building 206
Convener, Genevieve Williams

Long Range Planning – President’s Conference Room
Convener, Allan Belton

Rank and Tenure – Anderson University Center 134
Convener, Gina Gillie


1:40 - 2:10 p.m. - Interdisciplinary Program Committees

Environmental Studies – Rieke Science Center 108

Global Studies – Xavier 212

Holocaust and Genocide Studies – Hauge Administration Building 211 A

International Honors Program – Hauge Administration Building 204 B

Innovation Studies – Anderson University Center 212

Native American and Indigenous Studies – Hauge Administration Building 205

Women’s and Gender Studies – Hauge Administration Building 219

2:30 - 3:15 p.m. - School/Division Meeting

School of Arts & Communication – Mary Baker Russell Rehearsal Room (C-322)

School of Business – Morken 103

School of Education & Kinesiology – Anderson University Center 133

School of Nursing – Ramstad 206

Division of Humanities – Hauge Administration Building 200

Division of Natural Sciences – Leraas Lecture Hall, Rieke Science Center

Division of Social Sciences – Xavier 201

3:20 - 4:15 p.m. - Academic Departments

Division of Arts & Communication:
Department of Art & Design – Ingram 116
Department of Communication – Ingram 109
Department of Music – Mary Baker Russel Center 334
Department of Theatre & Dance – Karen Hille Phillips Center for the Performing Arts 127 (Green Room)

School of Business – Morken 103

School of Education and Kinesiology:
Department of Education – Anderson University Center 133
Department of Kinesiology – Anderson University Center 201

Division of Humanities:
Department of English – Hauge Administration Building 202
Department of Languages and Literatures – Hauge Administration Building 211B
Department of Philosophy – Hauge Administration Building 205
Department of Religion – Hauge Administration Building 204B

Division of Natural Sciences:
Department of Biology – Rieke Science Center 115
Department of Chemistry – Rieke Science Center 247
Department of Computer Science – Morken 180
Department of Geosciences – Rieke Science Center 108
Department of Mathematics – Morken 234
Department of Physics – Rieke Science Center 202

Division of Social Sciences:
Department of Anthropology – Xavier 140
Department of Economics – Xavier 117
Department of Marriage and Family Therapy – Garfield Station
Department of Psychology – Ramstad 103
Department of Social Work – Xavier 212
Department of Sociology – Xavier 150

Chris Knutzen Hall opens at 8:00 a.m. and refreshments will be available.  Addresses begin at 8:30 a.m.

8:30 - 9:40 a.m. - Welcome and Opening

Chris Knutzen Hall 

8:30 – 9:10 a.m. – Address – Provost Joanna Gregson
Introduction of New Faculty

9:10 – 9:40 a.m. – Address – Faculty Chair Michelle Ceynar

9:40 - 10:00 a.m. - Break

Need a quiet place to check email on your laptop, charge a device, or get a few things done between sessions? Workrooms have been set-up for your convenience in Anderson University Center 201, 212, and 213 (8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.).

10:00 a.m - 12:00 p.m. - Faculty Plenary Session I

Scandinavian Cultural Center

Actualizing the Power Within
workshop designed by Dr. Bette J. Dickerson and Dr. Kim Washington-Watson, lead by Dr. Kim Washington Watson

The objective of this workshop is to identify shared conflictual issues and to begin to develop consensual solutions for corrective collective action.

Kim Washington Watson Ed.D. (aka Dr. Kim) has served as an administrator and faculty for 20 years. She earned an associate in Arts and Science from Tacoma Community College, a bachelors and, master’s degrees in Public Administration from Evergreen State College, and Ed.D. in Education and College Administration from Oregon State University. While working at Tacoma Community College, Washington Watson designed the Job Assistant Center, served as the chair for the President’s Council on Cultural Diversity, directed Student Services and Instruction, and served for Tacoma Human Rights Department. Washington Watson’s work accomplishments with the National Science Foundation included the creation of an online advising avatar tool now serving Oregon, Phoenix, and California. She has worked with Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges and served as a faculty trainer for Clover Park Technical College and Montgomery College, Maryland. At American University she served as Interim Assistant Director for the D.C. Reads program and now serves as Special Initiatives Assistant to the Assistant Vice President–Student Engagement, Office of Campus Life.

In 2009, Washington Watson established her own business, KEW Consultants to assist with educational services for underserved communities in Pierce County. Through KEW she won a grant from Washington State Employees Credit Union (WSECU) in 2015 to which she created two computer laboratories in the Hilltop and Eastside of Tacoma, WA. Dr. Washington Watson maintains experience in multiple levels of college instruction including, faculty training, cross-disciplinary competency, online teaching, facilitation, and community service. Her publications include Learning communities and student affairs: Partnering for powerful learning (2007). Learning Communities and Educational Reform. The Washington Center for Improving the Quality of Undergraduate Education: The Evergreen State College. Olympia, WA.

Dr. Bette J. Dickerson is an Assistant Vice President in the Office of Campus Life, American University (AU), responsible for Student Engagement. Prior to that she was an AU Associate Professor of Sociology for twenty-eight years, retiring in 2017 as Associate Professor Emerita. Dr. Dickerson has served on the University Senate, as Chair of the Sociology Department and of the Women and Gender Studies Program. At the time of her retirement, she was Chair of the Sociology Graduate Program committee with primary responsibility for graduate student advising and internships. Professor Dickerson was a primary instructor for the Public Sociology Certificate program and taught in the Multi-Ethnic Studies and the African American and African Diaspora Studies interdisciplinary programs. She holds a PhD in Sociology from Washington State University and, before joining AU, had over 20 years of experience working in various philanthropic, nonprofit, and education venues. Dr. Dickerson is a past president of the Association of Black Sociologists, a recipient of its A. Wade Smith Award for Teaching, Mentoring and Service, and served on its History and Archives, Awards, Nominations, and Executive committees. Her publications include co-authoring an article on young Black women’s perceptions of childbirth, marriage, and career in the Journal of Sociology & Social Work (September, 2013), Black elder women and sexuality in Black Sexualities (Rutgers University Press, 2010), and a chapter on women’s leadership in sociology in Gender and Women’s Leadership (SAGE Publications, 2010). She authored a chapter on the Association of Black Sociologists in Diverse Histories of American Sociology (Brill, 2005) and was a co-editor for the recently released Notions of Family: Intersectional Perspectives (Emerald: Advances in Gender Research series, 2013).  Dr. Dickerson’s most recent participatory action-research projects were with South African grandmothers on their experiences with the HIV/AIDS pandemic in the aftermath of apartheid. She conducted community-engagement learning and service programs in South Africa and in Cuba where the focus was on race and gender identities.

12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. - Lunch

The Commons

Faculty, please collect a lunch card from the Office of the Provost Staff at the Commons entrance.

Need a quiet place to check email on your laptop, charge a device, or get a few things done between sessions? Workrooms have been set-up for your convenience in Anderson University Center 201, 212, and 213 (8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.).

1:30 - 3:30 p.m. - Faculty Plenary Session II

Chris Knutzen Hall

Understanding and Engaging our Core Curriculum

This session will be led by the Ad Hoc Committee on General Education Review and Revision, hoping to continue conversations about the Core Curriculum —what we teach to every undergraduate PLU student. The goal of the Committee’s overall process, and of this session, is to determine how the Core can best serve our students and exemplify the educational mission we share. The Committee will present the revised Liberal Arts Framework, compare it with our current General Education Program, and provide opportunities for conversation about each and about the best ways to assess whichever program is approved. The session will be followed by wine.

3:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. - Faculty Social Hour

Anderson University Center, Lower Plaza

Continue Faculty Conference conversations and celebrate a new academic year with colleagues while enjoying beverages and light hors d’oeuvre amidst Anderson University Center’s beautiful Lower Plaza.

10:00 - 11:30 a.m. - Ecology of Wellness at PLU: How do you participate?

Regency Room

Kuldhir Bhati, Executive Director of the Counseling and Health Centers
Eva Frey, Dean of Students
Joanna Royce-Davis, Vice President for Student Life

This session will focus on who are our students; how do we care for our students’ whole selves as a whole community.  We will be sharing data about our current population of students, campus initiatives and programs designed to support students success, and ways that we can increase our ability to support students through their educational journey at PLU.

~open to all staff

1:00 - 2:00 p.m. - The Growing Importance of Cybersecurity

Regency Room

Melanie Kingsley, Software Support Specialist
David Rebar, User Support Team Lead

Learn about best practices for protecting both personal, as well as university data, and find out what options are available to better protect your accounts. We will talk about identifying what types of data to be most concerned about and what resources are available to address some of these security concerns.

~open to all staff

9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. - ``Did that just happen?``: Navigating Tensions and Difficult Conversations in the Classroom

Regency Room

Jennifer Smith, Dean of Inclusive Excellence
~open to all faculty

By popular demand, this interactive* session is being offered to provide faculty with an opportunity to gain knowledge and develop skills to manage uncomfortable situations in the classroom with confidence. Together, we will
  • explore our role in establishing a climate where tense moments can be embraced as learning opportunities,
  • examine how our identities impact the way we engage these moments,
  • build on last year’s plenary about microaggressions and their impact on community, and
  • practice how to respond to tense situations when they arise in the classroom.
This session will be followed up by monthly opportunities to continue practicing these skills and talking with colleagues about the opportunities and challenges of creating inclusive classrooms. These follow-up sessions are scheduled for the following dates and times:
Wednesday, September 25, 1:00 – 2:00 p.m.
Tuesday, October 22, 2:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Friday, November 22, 9:00 – 10:00 a.m.
Locations TBD. An email will be sent to participants with location information, and it will also be included in the Provost’s Newsletter.
*Note: “Interactive” is code for activities and role playing so those of you who identify as introverts–and I count myself among you!–should come prepared to push yourselves. Of course, this work will take place in a supportive and affirming environment.

9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. - First-Year Experience Program Fall Workshop

Anderson University Center 133
~open to all FYEP faculty and staff colleagues

We invite all FYEP colleagues–both 101 and 190 faculty–to participate in this beginning-of-the-year program overview and update. Topics include: discussion of assessment results and common assignment revisions; overall program updates; a focus on assignment design and the FYEP library/information literacy curriculum. We’ve included an opportunity for faculty to provide ideas around the FYEP 102 initiative.
A light breakfast/snack is provided in the morning, and lunch/conversation at 12:00 p.m

9:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. - Getting Started with Sakai for Instructors

Library 140 Design Lab

Sean Horner, Senior Web Developer
~open to all faculty and course instructors, strongly encouraged for all new faculty/course instructors

Intended for new faculty and other instructors this workshop provides a guided walk-through for setting up a Sakai course site. Such tasks include uploading a syllabus and other introductory course materials. Participants will also learn how to publish weekly instructional content, administer a gradebook, and send announcements.
Note: Faculty who had participated in the PLUTO Essentials workshop will likely find this “Getting Started” workshop a repetition of previously covered content.

11:15 a.m. - 12:15 p.m. - Capture Your Content with Screencasts

Library 140 Design Lab

Misty Berlin, Instructional Technology Team Manager
Tommy Skaggs, Instructional Technologist
~open to all faculty and staff

Need to train employees, demonstrate a process, or record a lecture/presentation? Capture it with a screencast! Screencasts, which are video recordings of computer screens, are very effective instructional tools. In this introductory workshop you’ll learn how to create your own screencasts with easy-to-use software.

1:00 - 3:00 p.m. - 9 Things to Do for a Successful PLU Event

Regency Room
~open to all staff and faculty

This session will cover 9 key areas of focus for planning and promoting successful, collaborative events at PLU, and provide you with valuable resources to use while planning your next event.

1:15 - 3:00 p.m. - First-Year Experience Program Linked Course Curriculum Planning

Location TBA
~open to instructors of the Residence Hall Linked FYEP 101 sections

Instructors of the Residence Hall Linked FYEP 101 sections are invited to meet with Resident Hall staff to plan curricular connections for the fall. 

3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. - Center for Student Success and Faculty Advisors - Working Together

Chris Knutzen Hall

Center for Student Success (CSS) Staff
~open to all faculty 

Tools to support faculty advisors; lessons we’ve learned engaging with our first-year students; where our students need the most support and how CSS can help!

4:00 - 5:00 p.m. - Who Are Our Students & How Do We Care for and Support Them?

Chris Knutzen Hall

Eva Frey, Dean of Students
Kris Plaehn, Executive Director of the Center for Student Success
~open to all faculty


8:30 - 11:00 a.m. - Academic Program Leaders

Regency Room

Joanna Gregson, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs
~this session is by invitation only

Academic Program Leaders is an opportunity for leaders across the academic division to come together at the start of the academic year.

Invitations have been sent via Google Calendar. Please contact the Office of the Provost (provost@plu.edu) if you have any questions regarding Academic Program Leaders.

10:00 - 11:00 a.m. - Collaborating with Google Docs and Drive

Library 331

Layne Nordgren, Director for User Services/Instructional Technologies
~open to all staff and faculty

Interested in collaborating with your colleagues and students using documents, spreadsheets, and presentations? This workshop will focus on using the collaborative features of the Google Docs tool set. Hands-on activities will include collaborative document editing using Google Docs tools.


Faculty/Academic Deans


Note – Associates to Faculty Assembly may register using either the Faculty or Staff registration form depending on the sessions you plan to attend. 

Printable Schedules

University/Faculty Conference

Post Conference Workshops

Save the Dates

Save the Dates!

Faculty and Staff should also be aware of these other important Fall campus event dates.

  • September 6-9, 2019 | New Student Orientation
  • September 9, 2019 | Convocation, 10 am, Olson Auditorium
  • September 20, 2019 (4-6 pm) | First Faculty Assembly, Leraas Lecture Hall
    • Open to all Faculty and Associates to Faculty Assembly
  • October 4-6, 2019 | Homecoming Weekend
  • Friday, October 4, 2019 (4-5 pm) | Presidential Inauguration, Olson Auditorium
    • All members of the campus community are invited to attend.
  • October 17-19, 2019 | Fall Board of Regents Meeting

Exciting lectures, performances, sporting events, and other programs are scheduled throughout the fall semester. Visit the Campus Calendar frequently for updated event information. The 2019-2020 Academic Calendar is also available online.


Questions? Please contact the Office of the Provost, (253)535-7129 or provost@plu.edu.