Two students looking at an iPad together with text near them reading, "Students of Color."
Taezha and Jamae (First Year Students, Residents of the DJS Community - Students of Color) “The SOC community offers us an opportunity to meet people who can relate to how we feel. We value the feeling of knowing each neighbor by name and being friends with everyone. Our hall is known for dancing to music, cooking, and playing games that bring us closer together ay. We love our hall because it gives us a home away from home with a community that feels like a second family.”

About Students of Color (SOC)

For Students of Color interested in exploring their racial and ethnic identities.

With a commitment to creating more spaces where Students of Color can connect with one another, Students of Color (SOC), in the Diversity, Justice, and Sustainability (DJS) Learning Community seeks to honor, celebrate, and uplift the stories and experiences of residents. The SOC community will focus on the cultural wealth Students of Color bring to the Pacific Lutheran community by celebrating their linguistic and familial capital.

Residential Life worked with the Diversity Center, student groups such as ‘the collective’, and individual residents to listen to feedback about sense of belonging of Students of Color in the Residence Halls. A common narrative that emerged was the need for affinity space. A huge part of the value added of spaces such as the Diversity Center or the Students of Color retreat, and now the SOC floor, is that these are places where Students of Color, who are nearly always the minority in other spaces on PLU’s predominantly white campus, can be together with other students who have similar experiences of being a minority on campus.

In solidarity with the Students of Color retreat held every year by the Diversity Center, the SOC community is a place where residents are invited to explore the intersectionality of identities and learn from one another in order to build a sustainable community. All students who self-identify as a Student of Color and would like to genuinely participate in the community are welcome and encouraged to apply.

Great For Students Who ...

  • Enjoy studying and/or talking about social justice and social identities related to race and ethnicity
  • Are interested in participating in the Diversity, Justice and Sustainability (DJS) community and related co-curricular activities with the other two DJS sub-communities (i.e., First in the Family and Environmental & Social Justice)

Program + Learning Outcomes

By participating in SOC Wings, students will:

  • productively engage in DJS-related activities that support their own racial/ethnic identity development
  • participate in DJS-related activities outside of the classroom that promote social justice
  • have increased access to peers and faculty outside of the classroom to support their learning about social justice and identity development

Linked Course(s)

YES (for new First-Year Students)

All first-year students have the option to enroll (on a first-come, first-served basis) in a linked First Year Experience Program (FYEP) course on the topic of social justice. Examples of linked courses from fall 2021 include:

  • Smushed with Strangers and Other Public Transit Stories | Rebecca Wilkin | FYEP 101 Section 06
  • Democratic Citizenship | James Albrecht | FYEP 101 Section 08
  • Asian American Experience | Rick Barot | FYEP 101 Section 09
  • Banned Books | Lisa Marcus | FYEP 101 Section 13

Linked Residence Hall(s)

Ordal Hall  (two wings)

Example Programs

Below are a few examples of programs that have happened in this Learning Community in the past! If you have an idea for a wing or hall program, contact your Resident Assistant or Community Advocate to see about planning it!

  • DJS Retreat at the Center for Diversity, Justice, and Sustainability
  • Habitat for Humanity Volunteering
  • Staycation Parkland Immersion Alternative Spring Break | sponsored by the Center for Community Engagement and Service
  • My Culture is Not a Costume | Conversations with the Diversity Center about cultural appropriation in Halloween costumes
  • Tunnel of Oppression


For more information about this Learning Community option you may contact:

Dream Gonzales, Community Director for Ordal and Stuen Halls |