2018 University and Faculty Fall Conference: Community Building

August 29 - 30 with Pre-Conference Workshops August 27-28

For many of us, the academic year officially begins with University Conference. All faculty and staff are invited and encouraged to attend. Please see the current schedule of events below (additional details will be added as they become available). Registration will open in early August.

*Please note that printed copies of the schedule will not be available at University Conference this year. Printable versions of the schedules are available below.

New Faculty Orientation is held August 21-22, 2018.


Rahuldeep Singh Gill, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Religion, California Lutheran University

Dr. Gill is Cal Lutheran’s Campus Interfaith Strategist, who launched CLU’s Asian Studies Minor, served as Associate Director for CLU’s Center for Equality and Justice, and served as the Center’s Director until 2016. He also teaches at Berkeley’s Graduate Theological Union as Visiting Associate Professor of Sikh Studies and works with organizations to Inspire Connected Communities. Dr. Gill has twice won CLU’s Diversity Professor of the Year. He encourages discussions in his classes, broadens students’ perspectives, deepens their appreciation of diversity, and inspires them to be more understanding and compassionate.

His research explores the life and works of the Sikh tradition’s most important interpretive writer, Bhai Gurdas Bhalla (d. 1636). His first book, Drinking From Love’s Cup (OUP, 2016) re-visages the life and context of this important poet, as well as translates a selection of poems.

9:00 am - 1:30 pm (Morken 103)

First Year Experience Program (FYEP)
Rona Kaufman, Director of FYEP and Associate Professor of English
Jan Lewis, Associate Provost for Undergraduate Programs
Scott Rogers, Director of the Writing Center and Assistant Professor of English

All FYEP faculty (and those interested in teaching FYEP) are invited to join this half day workshop. The workshop time will be divided into three segments:

  1. Learning what’s new in FYEP.
  2. Sharing our best practices. Faculty should bring what they think of as their best assignment (or one of their best assignments) in support of a particular learning outcome and be prepared to share those assignments in small groups.
  3. Teaching writing to diverse populations. How do you create an inclusive learning community? And how do those practices of inclusion apply to writing?

Light refreshments provided. This workshop is open to all current and interested FYEP faculty and staff colleagues. To RSVP, please select this workshop on your University/Faculty Conference Registration.

9:00 - 10:00 am (Morken 124)

Sakai: Getting Started
Sean Horner, Senior Web Developer

Intended for new faculty and staff this workshop provides a guided walk-through for setting up a Sakai course site. Such tasks include uploading syllabus and other introductory course materials. Participants will also learn how to publish weekly instructional content, administer a gradebook, and send announcements.

This workshop is open to all faculty and staff. To RSVP, please select this workshop on your University/Faculty Conference Registration.

10:30 - 11:30 am (Morken 124)

Sakai: What’s New, What’s Coming
Sean Horner, Senior Web Developer
Layne Nordgren, Director for User Services/Instructional Technologies

Learn about recent enhancements of Sakai including new course templates, a revised course request process, and searchable documentation. Get an overview of a major upgrade to Sakai 12 in August 2019, including key features and what to expect during the 2018-19 academic year to prepare for the transition. There will be ample time for questions and discussion.

This workshop is open to all faculty and staff. To RSVP, please select this workshop on your University/Faculty Conference Registration.

1:00 - 2:00 pm (Library 331)

Academic Dashboard Introduction
Ardys Curtis, Director of Information Systems

If you are a dean or chair and have not learned about the power of the Academic Dashboard, sign up for this important session. The Academic Dashboard is a data reporting tool developed specifically for department chairs, deans, and administrators which yields student, course, enrollment, registration, graduation, and other pertinent data. This tool provides a way to extract metrics and key performance indicators in a consistent manner. Information is displayed in graphical, spreadsheet, and other useful report formats. This session is held in a computer lab, providing you hands-on experience using the Dashboard. Maximum number of seats available: 17

This workshop is open to academic deans and department chairs. Please RSVP to Ardys Curtis, curtisae@plu.edu, x 7149.

3:00-5:00 pm (Anderson University Center, Room 133)

PLU Cares for Students and Advisors – How the Student Care Network, the Center for Student Success and the Registrar’s office can help
Kevin Berg, Registrar
Eva Frey, Dean of Students
Kris Plaehn, Center for Student Success

Student Care Network – how to use, when to use, what happens when you use
First part of the session focuses on the Student Care Network (SCN) which is now entering its second year at PLU. The SCN is designed for immediate outreach to students who are experiencing issues that affect them in class (academic and otherwise) ranging from missing class to self-harming behaviors. We will review templates for outreach that faculty may use and will provide faculty greater context to understand student behavior and the level of consultation and support by the SCN for faculty regarding student behavior.

Center for Student Success – what and who it is for, how it complements faculty advisors’ work
Second part of the session will focus on the Center for Student Success (CSS) and its connections with faculty in its first year. Who will it be serving and how will it affect faculty advisors? Review of the assistance the Center can offer to all students; initial discussion of what a 4-year planning process for students would look like including academic milestones (32/64/90 credits) and federal financial aid implications for students not meeting milestones.

Tools for Advising – Banner tools, CAPP report, Advising Notes, Google Forms
Third part of the session will be a ‘how-to’ and ‘what’s available’ as tools for advisor use. How can CAPP (Curriculum, Advising and Program Planning) be used most efficiently; How to use Advising Notes in Banner; How to use Google forms for course substitutions and declaring students into a major or minor; two-year course cycles and 4-year advising guides – how best to use them.

There will be opportunities for participants to ask questions and a promise of a good pace and good information. for other areas. Participants may bring their laptops/tablets to practice locating information.

This workshop is open to all faculty and staff. To RSVP, please select this workshop on your University/Faculty Conference Registration.

9:00 - 10:00 am (Morken 103)

Cybersecurity Awareness and Protecting your Data
David Rebar, User Support Team Lead

Learn about best practices for protecting both personal as well as university data and find out what steps PLU is taking 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.

This workshop is open to all faculty and staff. To RSVP, please select this workshop on your University/Faculty Conference Registration.

11:00 am - 12:00 pm (Morken 124)

Google Docs and Drive Collaboration
Layne Nordgren, Director for User Services/Instructional Technologies

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

This workshop is open to all faculty and staff. To RSVP, please select this workshop on your University/Faculty Conference Registration.

1:00 - 3:00 pm (Scandinavian Cultural Center)

Academic Program Leaders Meeting
Joanna Gregson, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs

All Academic Deans, Department Chairs, and Multidisciplinary Program Chairs/Directors should plan to attend this important invitation-only meeting where we will discuss the major academic topics for 2018-19.

This workshop is for Academic Dean, Department Chairs, and Multidisciplinary Program Chairs/Directors and is by invitation only. Please RSVP via the Google Calendar event invitation.

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

Ness Family Chapel
Karen Hille Phillips Center for the Performing Arts

8:45 - 9:45 a.m. - Reception and Presidential Address

Olson Auditorium 

8:45 – 9:05 a.m. – Reception

9:05 – 9:15 a.m. – Welcome
Rebecca Wilkin and Daniel Heath

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

9:45 - 10:00 a.m. - Break

10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. - Keynote Address and Workshop

10:00 – 11:00 a.m. – Keynote Address

Do the Right Things: Inclusion, Resilience, and the Vocation of a University
Dr. Rahuldeep Singh Gill
Olson Auditorium

In this talk, Dr. Rahuldeep Singh Gill will share his thoughts on communal resilience, and identify aspects of cultures that act as resilience resources. From his perch as faculty and Campus Interfaith Strategist at California Lutheran University, Dr. Gill will open a conversation about what it means to be a West Coast university in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America in this cultural moment.

11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. – Workshop
Dr. Rahuldeep Singh Gill

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

Olson Auditorium

4:20 - 4:50 p.m. - Meeting with the Center for Student Success on Advising for Entering First Years and Transfer Students

Scandinavian Cultural Center

Interested departmental co-advisors, please join the Center for Student Success for a discussion on the work that we will do together with first-year/incoming students.

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

Admission and Retention  – Anderson University Center 201
Convener, Tom Edgar

Campus Life – Hauge Administration Building 211A
Convener, Harry Papadopoulos

Educational Policies – Hauge Administration Building 211B
Convener, Rebekah Mergenthal

Faculty Affairs – Hauge Administration Building 208
Convener, Rebecca Wilkin

Governance – Anderson University Center 212
Convener, Agnes Choi

Global Education – Anderson University Center 213
Convener, Peter Davis

Instructional Resources – Hauge Administration Building 206
Convener, Romey Haberle

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

Rank and Tenure – Anderson University Center 134
Convener, Rona Kaufman

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

Environmental Studies – Rieke, 108

Global Studies – Xavier 212

Innovation Studies – Anderson University Center, 212

Native American and Indigenous Studies – Hauge Administration Building, 205

Women’s and Gender Studies – Hauge Administration Building, 219

2:20 - 3:15 p.m. - School/Division Meetings

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

School of Business –  Morken 137

School of Education & Kinesiology – Anderson University Center, 133

Division of Humanities – Hauge Administration Building, 202

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

School of Nursing – Ramstad, 206

Division of Social Sciences – Xavier Hall 201

3:20 - 4:15 p.m. - Department Meetings

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 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

School of Business – Morken 137

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

School of Nursing – Ramstad, 206

Moving forward from a very difficult year last year, the purpose of Faculty Fall Conference 2018 is to build community and cultivate shared vision. The two foci of the sessions are practices of inclusion, that empower each one of us to equitably enact PLU’s mission of care, and General Education, through which we express our shared educational vision.

8:00 - 9:40 a.m. - Reception and Opening

Chris Knutzen Hall

8:00 – 8:30 a.m. – Reception

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

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

Scandinavian Cultural Center 

Building an Inclusive Community through Awareness: The Impacts of Bias on Individuals and Organizations
~a conversation facilitated by Ilsa Govan, co-founder of Cultures Communicating

Discussing issues of privilege, power, and identity strengthens a campus community by creating a climate where we can connect across a myriad of perspectives, where everyone’s unique experiences are valued as essential to the learning and office community, and where talent is attracted and retained. However, there is also the risk that when we engage in such conversations, we may say something that not only offends someone but also reinforces the power structures that marginalize and exclude them based on their identities, thus negatively impacting their sense of belonging. This leads not just to feelings of anger and stress for individuals but also weakens their investment in the community, which is thus deprived of their talents, skills and perspectives and hampers its ability to be innovative and excellent. In such instances, we may not even recognize when a word or comment is tied to an experience of marginalization.

How we handle these difficult moments depends on our level of comfort and skill. Some people may avoid such conversations or become defensive, furthering our divides, rather than effectively engaging in ways that foster learning and working environments that are inclusive and creative for everyone. This interactive workshop builds on previous University Conference sessions about identity and diversity and is designed to increase participants’ self-awareness and knowledge of racial microaggressions and other common, sometimes well-intended, comments that are laden with unconscious bias. Gaining awareness and knowledge of our biases is at the heart of critical inquiry and will strengthen our learning community and enable us to thrive in the coming years.

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

The Commons

Faculty, please collect a free lunch card at the Commons entrance.

1:00 - 2:00 p.m. - Faculty Plenary Session II

Scandinavian Cultural Center 

Building an Inclusive Community through Action: Skills for Interrupting Bias
~a workshop facilitated by Ilsa Govan, co-founder of Cultures Communicating

Communities are only as strong as their communication skills. Directly addressing instances of bias is the surest way to create an inclusive and welcoming learning and working environment for all students, faculty, and staff. In this session, participants will learn strategies for effectively engaging in situations when they commit, witness or are the target of a microaggression. Practice will be based on actual scenarios that PLU faculty have experienced.

2:00 - 2:20 p.m. - Break

2:20 - 4:20 p.m. - Faculty Plenary Session III

Chris Knutzen Hall

Mission, Distinction, Collaboration: General Education at PLU

The Faculty Assembly formed an Ad Hoc Committee to consider whether revisions to the General Education Program “might better serve our students and our educational mission” with the goal of bringing “a revised curriculum to the assembly for vote sometime in Fall 2018.” The Committee has continued its work through the summer and is facilitating this session to ask faculty to help refine the proposal which will be coming to the faculty for a vote this fall. This session will:

  • Briefly review the evidence we have gathered from students, faculty, alumni, and other schools suggesting that we should consider revisions to PLU’s General Education Program to better serve our educational mission, create a more distinctive core for the PLU undergraduate experience, and meet internal and external goals for assessment.
  • Briefly explain the proposal we have developed over the summer for the revised curriculum we are calling the “Liberal Arts Foundation.” This presentation will offer a basis for discussion at the first Faculty Assembly of the year.
  • Invite faculty to work together to imagine how courses we already teach and could develop fit into a revised curriculum. This interactive portion will be the primary focus of the session, providing opportunities to collaborate across disciplines, share what you hope to bring to a revised curriculum, and express what you most want from our university’s Liberal Arts Foundation.

4:30 - 6:00 p.m. - Faculty Social Hour

*New Event!* Continue Faculty Conference conversations and celebrate a new academic year with colleagues while sampling bubbly concoctions amidst Anderson University Center’s beautiful Lower Plaza.

Conference Registration

Faculty/Associates to Faculty


PLU Retirees

Printable Schedules

Pre-Conference Workshops

University/Faculty Conference

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