2023 University and Faculty Fall Conference

Wednesday, August 30 – Thursday, August 31

Stay tuned for details:

University Conference will be held the morning of Wednesday, August 30, 2023 followed by Faculty Fall Conference that afternoon and all day Thursday, August 31, 2023.

Pre-Conference Workshops will be held Monday, August 28 – Tuesday, August 29, 2023.


*If you are a staff member and do not see the workshop you are interested in, please register through the “Faculty / Staff with Faculty Status / Academic Deans (& those that use Sakai)” registration form.

Please email provost@plu.edu with any questions.

Printable schedules

Pre-conference Workshops & Events

Pre-Conference Workshops & Events

Monday, August 28 – Tuesday, August 29, 2023

A variety of virtual and on-campus workshops and events have been scheduled for faculty and staff during Pre-Conference Workshops.

*Registration is required for Pre-Conference Workshops and Events.

Monday, August 28

8:00 – 10:00 a.m. | Getting Started with Sakai for InstructorsZoom
Sean Horner, Senior Web Developer

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.

This workshop is open to all faculty/instructors. Registration is required.

8:30 – 10:00 a.m. | CAPP RefresherZoom
Kelly Poth, Registrar; and Kris Plaehn, Executive Director Center for Student Success

CAPP – the degree roadmap! Join us for a refresher on how to utilize CAPP effectively for you and your students. We’ll discuss transfer credit, majors/minors, degree requirements and more. Advisors are especially encouraged to attend.

Open to all faculty/instructors and advisors. Registration is required.

10:00 – 11:00 a.m. | Navigating the use of Artificial Intelligence in Teaching and Learning AI – Morken 103 Hauge Admin 101 & Zoom
Facilitated by APIC (Academic Performance & Integrity Committee) and the Office of the Provost

Join members of APIC and the Office of the Provost in a workshop on faculty and student use of AI, including ChatGPT. Facilitators will share sample syllabi language and course assignments.

This workshop is open to all faculty/instructors. Registration is required.

11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. | Staff PhotosKaren Hille Phillips Red Square
Sy Bean, Campus Photographer

Are you new to PLU, or would you like a new staff photo? Time slots are limited!

(Note: If you have been invited to New Faculty Orientation, a separate time has already been reserved for you! Please do not sign up for this time slot.)

Open to all faculty/instructors and staff. If time slots are full, please register to be added to a mailing list for the next photo opportunity.

11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. | Navigating and Engaging Student-Focused Wellbeing Services and Resources – Morken 103
Joanna Royce-Davis, Vice President for Student Life
Eva Frey, Dean of Students
Austin Beiermann, Director for Accessibility and Wellbeing Resources
James Innocent, Assistant Director for Outreach/Counselor

This session provides faculty and staff with an overview of the range and expanded capacity of wellbeing services and resources available to PLU students, including the intentional use of public health population level approaches for community skill building. This session also offers opportunities for participants to engage the collective wisdom of the group regarding embedding wellbeing strategies in their courses and programs; initiating wellbeing conversations; making referrals; and closing loops.

This session is open to all faculty/instructors and staff. Registration is required.

1:00 – 5:00 p.m. | FYEP 102 Faculty Development Workshop – Hauge Admin 101
Rona Kaufman, FYEP Director

This workshop will support FYEP 102 instructors with syllabus development and assignment design. Faculty will discuss strategies for equity-minded teaching. They will participate in the development of the FYEP 102 common assignment.

This session is by invitation only for faculty teaching FYEP 102. Please RSVP via the Google Calendar event invitation and contact rogerssm@plu.edu with questions.

4:00 – 5:00 p.m. | Developing Transparent Research Assignments – Hauge Admin 101 & Zoom
Roberto Arteaga, Instruction and Reference Librarian

Transparency in Teaching in Learning (TILT) aims to create more equitable teaching and learning practices. In this interactive workshop, attendees will learn about transparent assignment design practices that can help them create a more direct connection between their learning outcomes and the work of the course. Attendees are encouraged to bring an assignment to work on during the workshop.

This session is open to all faculty/instructors. Registration is requested, but drop-ins are welcome.

Tuesday, August 29

9:00 – 10:30 a.m. | Academic Program Leaders MeetingAUC Scandinavian Cultural Center
Joanna Gregson, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs

All Academic Deans, Department Chairs, and Interdisciplinary Program Chairs/Directors should plan to attend this important meeting where we will discuss the major academic topics for the 2023-2024 academic year.

This meeting is by invitation only; please RSVP via the Google Calendar event invitation. Contact provost@plu.edu with questions.

10:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. | Gender Diversity Workshop, presented by the Rainbow CenterAUC Scandinavian Cultural Center

In recent years, we have seen troubling trends in the student success data for students who identify as transgender, non-binary, or who prefer not to identify their gender. Therefore, this workshop is being hosted so that we all can learn more about gender identity, gender expression, intersectionality, and how to help break down those barriers and make a sensitive, affirming, and welcoming space for the gender-diverse community.

This workshop will be facilitated by Charlie Best, Education Manager at the Rainbow Center. Charlie is a proud queer, transgender man who has been having difficult discussions about gender, sexuality, and intersectional identity for most of his life. At the Rainbow Center, Charlie develops and delivers trainings to organizations and businesses around Washington designed to teach about the LGBTQ+ community and provide the tools to make the world a safer, more affirming, and accepting space through an intersectional, actively anti-racist lens.

Also, in advance of the workshop, you may submit your questions about the LGBTQ+ community anonymously here. Responses will be collected by our facilitator. You may submit questions to this survey as often as you would like.

All faculty/instructors and staff are encouraged to attend. Registration is required.

12:30 – 2:30 p.m. | HPRB Workshop for UD and Committee MembersAUC Scandinavian Cultural Center
Marianne Taylor, Professor of Psychology, Chair of HPRB (Human Participants Review Board)

Intended for unit Designates and Committee members who will review online HPRB proposal submissions and provide feedback through Axiom Mentor system.

This workshop is by invitation only. Contact hprb@plu.edu with questions.

1:00 – 3:00 p.m. | FYEP 101 WorkshopMorken 103 & Zoom
Rona Kaufman, FYEP Director

This workshop will focus on the First-Year Experience Program’s essential role in a revised General Education program and in retention.

Faculty who teach FYEP are especially encouraged to attend, but all faculty and staff are welcome. Registration is required

3:00 – 4:30 p.m. | Developing an Inclusive SyllabusMorken 103
Jennifer Smith, Dean of Inclusive Excellence

In this interactive workshop, instructors will have the opportunity to engage in structured reflection on a syllabus that they have created. Using portions of the Syllabus Review Guide for Equity-Minded Practices, we will review how well we know our syllabi, who our syllabi serve, and in what ways our syllabi do or don’t reflect equity-minded practices: “As artifacts of practice that capture how faculty see the course, what they assume students should be able to accomplish, and what they will do to advance student learning, inquiry into syllabi has the potential to reveal the assumptions, attitudes, values, and beliefs that shape teaching” (2). Thus, regularly participating in syllabus review is a key strategy not only for teaching inclusively but for “mak[ing] inquiry a key, routine aspect of your practice” (4). 

All participants should bring a syllabus to the workshop.

All faculty/instructors are encouraged to attend. Registration is requested, but not required.

3:00 – 4:00 p.m. | HPRB Workshop for FacultyZoom
Marianne Taylor, Professor of Psychology, Chair of HPRB (Human Participants Review Board)

Open to all faculty whose classes submit HPRB proposals. Overview of HPRB process and resources including online submission of research through Axiom Mentor system. 

This workshop is open to all faculty. Registration is required.

University Conference

University Conference

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

9:30 – 10:00 a.m. | Chapel – Karen Hille Phillips Center for the Performing Arts – Ness Family Chapel

All are welcome for the first chapel of the new Academic Year

10:00 – 10:30 a.m. | Morning Refreshments – Karen Hille Phillips Center for the Performing Arts – Red Square

University Conference opens with coffee/tea and mingling in Red Square — come at 10:00 a.m. to connect with your colleagues from across campus before heading into the auditorium at 10:30 a.m.!

10:30 – 11:30 a.m. | University Conference – Auditorium of Karen Hille Phillips Center for the Performing Arts

With a focus on our shared purpose and on centering community, this year’s program will feature President Belton’s remarks outlining the state of the university. Additionally, a panel of the vice presidents and senior leadership will provide insights into their division’s strategic direction, previewing collective inspiration and collaborative efforts in the year ahead.

11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. | University Conference Lunch – Karen Hille Phillips Center for the Performing Arts – Red Square

Following the program, join us in Red Square for lunch, celebration, and further opportunities to connect with colleagues!

Faculty Fall Conference

Faculty Fall Conference Day 1 | Faculty Committee Organizational Meetings

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

1:15 – 2:00 p.m. | Faculty Committee Organizational Meetings

Academic Performance & IntegrityPaul SuttonAdmin 217
Core CurriculumJacob EggeAdmin 202
Educational PoliciesJessica SchwinckAdmin 219
Faculty AffairsBeth Griech-Polelle & N. JusticeAdmin 211B
GovernanceOksana EjokinaAdmin 211A
Global EducationHeather MathewsAdmin 200
Rank and TenureCharlie KaticaAdmin 204B

2:15 – 3:15 p.m. | College Meetings

Health ProfessionsClinical Learning and Simulation Center 200
Liberal StudiesXavier 201
Natural SciencesTBD
Professional StudiesTBD

3:30 – 4:15 p.m. | School/Department Meetings – Meeting details communicated by unit

4:30 – 5:15 p.m. | Interdisciplinary Program Meetings – Meeting details communicated by program


PLU Staff Council and University Scholars Association

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

5:00 p.m. | Welcome Back Social – University House

Join the PLU Staff Council and University Scholars Association (known to most as the “University House”) as they celebrate the start of the academic year with a faculty and staff welcome back social at the University House! Meet members of the University Scholars Association Board of Directors, and learn about membership (open to all faculty and staff!) as they kick off their opening event of the year. Representatives for PLU’s Staff Council will be available to introduce themselves and answer any questions about Council, as they co-host the social. Close out the workday with this fun opportunity to mix and mingle with colleagues from across campus. Refreshments will be provided! Event registration is required.


Faculty Fall Conference Day 2 | Cultivating “Flourishing” in Lutheran Higher Education – Chris Knutzen Hall

Thursday, August 31, 2023

9:00 – 9:30 a.m. | Informal Morning Social
With coffee, tea, and scones

9:30 – 9:40 a.m. | Welcome & Invocation
Welcome – Co-chairs
Invocation – Pastor Jen Rude

9:40 – 10:10 a.m. | Provost’s Address
Joanna Gregson

10:10 – 10:40 a.m. | Faculty Chair’s Address
Neal Yakelis

10:40 – 11:00 a.m. | Break

11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. | In Search of ‘Thriving’ in Higher Education
Presented by Dr. Bryan Dewsbury

About Dr. Bryan Dewsbury

Bryan Dewsbury is an Associate Professor of Biology at Florida International University where he also is an Associate Director of the STEM Transformation Institute. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Biology from Morehouse College in Atlanta, GA, and his Masters and PhD in Biology from Florida International University in Miami, FL. He is the Principal Investigator of the Science Education And Society (SEAS) program, where his team conducts research on the social context of education. He is a Fellow of the John N. Gardner Institute and Director at the RIOS (Racially-Just Inclusive Open Science) institute. He conducts faculty development and support for institutions interested in transforming their educational practices pertaining to creating inclusive environments and in this regard has worked with over 100 institutions across North America, United Kingdom and West Africa. He is a co-author on the upcoming book Norton’s Guide to Inclusive Teaching and author of the upcoming book What then shall I teach? – Rethinking equity in higher education. He is the founder of the National Science Foundation (NSF) funded Deep Teaching Residency, a national workshop aimed at supporting faculty in transforming their classroom to more meaningfully incorporate inclusive practices. Bryan is originally from the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago and proudly still calls the twin island republic home.

12:00 – 1:00 p.m. | Lunch with Dr. Bryan Dewsbury
Faculty lunch provided

1:00 – 2:45 p.m. | In Search of ‘Thriving’ in Higher Education continued
Presented by Dr. Bryan Dewsbury

2:45 – 3:00 p.m. | Break

3:00 – 4:00 p.m. | General Education
Facilitated by the CCC (Core Curriculum Committee) Scott Rogers and Jacob Egge

New Student Orientation

New Student Orientation

Becoming a Lute: A Reception and Resource Fair for Families, Supporters, and Students
Friday, September 1, 2023, 4:00–5:00 p.m.
Upper Campus Grassy Quad (between Hauge, Xavier, Karen Hille Phillips Center for Performing Arts, and Hong Residence Hall), near Red Square

This joyful event welcomes new Lutes with refreshments, music, a short program, and an  ice-breaker game of community bingo. We are excited to welcome our incoming students and their families and supporters to campus on Friday, September 1, 2023. Check out the full Lute Welcome Schedule here. We are writing today specifically to invite you to join and assist us at the Becoming a Lute Reception on Friday, September 1. Our goal is to have as many faculty and staff as are available join us to welcome our new Lutes to campus! Please consider joining us as members of our Lute community to welcome our new Lutes as they seek their early points of connection at PLU!

There are two ways you can join us in welcoming these new Lutes to our community!

  • Mix and mingle: Meet and mingle with new students and their families/supporters.
  • Event support: Volunteer at one of the event stations (e.g., serving snacks, providing waste diversion, assisting with the community bingo game, staffing our prize table, and more).

RSVP by Monday, August 21, at 9:00 a.m.: Please let us know if you can attend the Becoming a Lute event by completing this RSVP form!

LUTE Welcome: New Student Orientation Schedule: Check out the rest of the LUTE Welcome: New Student Orientation schedule on our website!

Safety Protocols: Masking is not required for this event. If determining factors arise, we will alert attendees if masking becomes a requirement. Vaccination is required for new students, and families/supporters coming to campus are strongly encouraged to participate in testing prior to their arrival.

Additional opportunities to support new (and continuing) students at the beginning of the fall semester:

  • Queer Connections | Wednesday, September 6, 2023 | 10:30–12:00 p.m. | AUC Atrium
  • Engagement Fair | Thursday, September 7, 2023 | 4:00–6:00 p.m. | Red Square

To participate in tabling, fill out this form by Friday, September 1, 2023.



Tuesday, September 5, 2023

The Convocation ceremony dates back to customs from medieval universities, meant to welcome new students and faculty and set intentions for the year ahead.

In keeping with a specifically PLU tradition, faculty process down Hinderlie Hill and welcome new Lutes in an outdoor receiving line as students enter Olson Auditorium. Faculty then process in after the incoming class has entered and take their seats on the floor of Olson for the remainder of the ceremony. This ceremony takes on a special meaning as students will convene together in Olson Auditorium to participate in the first ceremony of their academic experience at PLU. The next time the incoming class will gather in this manner will be at Commencement.

Convocation schedule for Tuesday, September 5, 2023:

  • 9:30 a.m. — Faculty begin to line up in the Mortvedt Library Lobby for processional down the hill
  • 9:45 a.m. — University offices close to allow all employees to attend Convocation
  • 10:00 a.m. — Convocation ceremony
  • 11:15 a.m. — University offices reopen
  • 11:50 a.m. — Classes begin

Save the Dates

Please also save the dates for the following events:


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