For over 30 years, Pacific Lutheran University has helped students translate their “love of books” into a “life of books,” through an exciting professional career in publishing. One of the only such undergraduate programs in the country, PLU’s Publishing & Printing Arts (PPA) program is highly respected by employers for its combination of preprofessional skills and solid liberal arts education. This six-course (12-credit) interdisciplinary minor gives students a head start into the world of publishing and related fields. Other such programs in the nation focus only on this history of the book, publishing studies, or traditional printing arts. PLU’s program is unique in its combination of all three areas of study with elective credits that combine for the most comprehensive program of its kind in the nation.
PPA readily complements majors like English, communication, foreign languages, public relations, journalism, marketing, and graphic design. But students in other disciplines also benefit from PPA’s links to publishing opportunities in those fields.
One special feature of the PPA program is the variety of internships it supports, both full-time and part-time. Internship sponsors in the United States have included Parenting Press, Copper Canyon Press, the Minnesota Historical Society Press, NavPress, and the ELCA, as well as several libraries and museums. Students have also enjoyed internships abroad, including with Gamsberg Macmillan Publishers in Namibia. New opportunities are always emerging with publishers, booksellers, and printers, in the growing field of technical communications, and in the publication departments of a diverse range of companies.
PPA minors are also leaders in PLU’s student publications, including the Mooring Mast and Saxifrage.