Welcome to the Parkland Literacy Center

The Parkland Literacy Center (PLC) is an organization at Pacific Lutheran University (PLU) that establishes, implements, and conducts various programs that serve the academic needs of our local community. The PLC is composed of PLU student staff as well as student volunteers.

The mission of the PLC is to serve the greater Parkland community through literacy training and academic support. Currently, we provide any subject of tutoring to K-12 students within the Franklin Pierce and Bethel School Districts. In addition to our academic tutoring services, we offer language tutoring assistance as well. This includes English Language Learners (ELL) for people of any background and/or experience, as well as assistance in learning Spanish, and preparing for the STAMP test (allows for students in high school to earn language credits in college).

The PLC is an encouraging and safe space. We want to challenge common myths that some students are naturally better students, better readers, or better writers. The truth is that every student has a wealth of experience to share and any student can be an excellent reader, thinker, writer, or speaker. What does it take to improve? It takes support! And we’re here to offer it. We help students learn by building confidence, supporting skill development, and demystifying the learning process. We offer these resources through tutoring drop-in hours and/or through virtual or in-person appointments by emailing us at literacy@plu.edu.

Parkland Literacy Center Logo

Contact Information

Parkland Literacy Center
Phone: 253-535-7494
Email: literacy@plu.edu

Anderson University Center 135
Tacoma, WA 98447

Spring 2024

The PLC is open for drop-in hours until May 16, 2024. We will be closed after May 16th until Septebmer.

Daily schedule:  Monday-Thursday, 4pm-6pm

You can also email us to schedule appointments outside of these hours, based on tutor availability: literacy@plu.edu

Please specify the area(s) you need help with, as well as the times you are available.

Clases de inglés / English classes for adults are Tuesdays, 6:30-8:30 – join any time!  The classes resume February 13, 2024 and end in May.

Who is eligible for tutoring services?

Any K-12 students in the greater Parkland area, including but not limited to Franklin Pierce and Bethel School Districts. This includes ELL/MLL students and special education students.

How do I sign up for tutoring?

If you come in during our drop-in hours above, you don’t have to sign up! If the times above don’t work for you, reach out to set up a different time. Email is best, but a phone call will work too. If we aren’t in the office, leave us a message!

How do I contact the Parkland Literacy Center?

You can contact us via email at literacy@plu.edu or on the phone at (253)-535-7494.

What subjects are offered at the PLC?

At the PLC we offer tutoring in every subject! This includes general study skills, math, science, writing, and world languages.

Where do I go for tutoring?

As of Fall 2022, we are located on the Pacific Lutheran University Campus in the Anderson University Center building (AUC). For our drop-in hours, we are in AUC 135 on Mondays and Wednesdays, and AUC 134 on Tuesdays and Thursdays. These rooms are on the bottom floor and across from the Lute Locker. Most PLU students know where the Lute Locker is, if you need help. Appointments usually take place in AUC 135.

How much does it cost?

Nothing! All of our services are absolutely free!

Are there free snacks available?


Who are the tutors?

The tutors are all college students from PLU. We have tutors from the education, social work, psychology, and Peace Corps Prep programs, among many others. K-12 students are always more than welcome (and encouraged) to ask questions about what college life is like.

Along with the student being tutored, does there have to be a parent/guardian present?

Elementary students need a parent/guardian to stick around, but middle schoolers and high schoolers can attend unaccompanied.

The Parkland Literacy Center supports students from our community (currently Franklin Pierce and Bethel School Districts) by providing them assistance with their studies. The PLC is specifically committed to helping students succeed in several contexts: 1) AVID and AP coursework and exams, 2) the World Language Credit for Proficiency Assessment (STAMP test), 3) effective writing in any course, as well as SAT and college prep. Our tutors are all volunteers who work closely with PLC staff to create a welcoming and supportive space for students from any background.

If you have any questions about working in the PLC, please contact the staff by emailing literacy@plu.edu.

Do I need to complete a background check?

All PLC tutors (in fact, anyone supporting Franklin Pierce Schools) must complete the Franklin Pierce Volunteer form. This will take 15 to 20 minutes. You can find the link here (or paste in this url https://franklinpiercevolunteers.hrmplus.net/).

How do I make or change my volunteer schedule?

Contact the PLC staff using the literacy@plu.edu email address or speak directly with one of the Directors or Assistant Directors.

Assistant Director Lydia Downs

Lydia is in her second year at PLU, majoring in elementary education and minoring in Peace Corps Preparation. Lydia is from Portland, OR. Education is something Lydia is very passionate about. She has been a camp counselor, teaches swim lessons, and coaches swim team every summer. On campus, Lydia is involved in Residential Life as an RA, the music program where she plays violin, and the International Honors Program (IHON). Outside of the PLC, you can find Lydia running or hiking outside, or relaxing with friends. She is very excited for the future of the PLC!

Assistant Director Kaila Harris

Kaila is in her 4th year at PLU, majoring in elementary education and minoring in music. Kaila plays the French horn in on-campus ensembles and loves to arrange horn music! Growing up, Kaila loved helping her classmates with their math homework and loves to help people learn. Kaila is very thankful and eager for the opportunity to work with her community and help other students grow. Outside of PLU, you’ll usually find Kaila substitute teaching in local schools or playing video games.

Monroe TorkelsonAssistant Director Monroe Torkelson

Monroe is a junior at PLU double majoring in acting and communications, and minoring in Norwegian and dance. She is involved in many activities on campus, including the improv team and dance team. She has volunteered all her life and enjoys helping and teaching others. Outside of tutoring, you can usually find Monroe eating in the AUC or sitting around campus. She is so excited to be back in person and looking forward to the future of the PLC!