Student Code of Conduct

2018 - 2019

PLU admits and enrolls students who possess the capacity for success both intellectually and personally at the collegiate level. It is our belief that each student is responsible for their behavior at all times. When accepted for membership into the PLU community, each student assumes the responsibilities and rights emerging from the university’s goals and objectives. These include, but are not limited to, dedication to exploring human knowledge and culture while promoting the intellectual, physical, social, and spiritual development of students, and nurturing each student’s preparation for responsible participation not only on the campus but also in local, state, regional, national, and international settings.

Once accepted for admission into the PLU community, PLU assumes that each student who enters the university possesses an earnest purpose; the ability to exercise mature judgment; the ability to act in a responsible manner; a well-developed concept of, and commitment to honor, morality and integrity; and a respect for laws and the rights of others. This assumption prevails unless a student negates it through misconduct.

The university adopts only such policies, rules and regulations that seem necessary for the welfare of the educational community. Regulations include those items that fall within policies set by the Board of Regents and the university administration, along with local, state, and federal laws. Each student associated with PLU is expected to be familiar with and to follow all policies, rules and regulations promulgated by the university. Failure to abide by the policies, rules, and regulations may result in disciplinary action(s) outlined in “Student Conduct Procedures.”

In addition to the Student Code of Conduct, rules and regulations developed by the university to maintain a safe and orderly environment may be found on the PLU website, in the Course Catalog, Living on Campus brochure, Master Housing and Meal Plan Agreement, and Student Parking Regulations.  The print publications may be obtained from the Residential Life Office, LuteCard and Information Center, Campus Safety and Information and the Student Financial Services.  Additional resources are found on the respective websites of these offices.

The Student Code of Conduct may be revised when, in PLU’s discretion, the need arises. This may occur during the course of an academic year, as well as a break between academic years. Revisions occur under the direction of the Dean of Students, in consultation with the Director for Student Rights and Responsibilities, appropriate student, faculty, and administrative committees/councils and legal counsel. Members of the PLU campus community requesting changes to the Code of Conduct may do so through the officers of ASPLU or RHA, as a request to the Campus Life Committee of the Faculty, or directly with the Dean of Students. Students will be notified of changes as they become effective. Notification will be made via email.

Students are separately accountable both to local, state, and federal laws and to the PLU Student Code of Conduct. When local, state, or federal law and the PLU Student Code of Conduct overlap, the university may invoke the Code to protect its own interests and standards.

A student who breaks the law must be prepared to accept the consequences, since they have no more immunity from the law than other citizens. Students participating in PLU study away programs, or who are enrolled at PLU as international students, are also expected to adhere to the laws of their host country and uphold the standards outlined in PLU’s Student Code of Conduct.

The Student Code of Conduct contains policies and procedures that apply to all students enrolled in courses at Pacific Lutheran University. Individuals involved in incidents prior to or during a break between successive terms of enrollment may be subject to action in the Student Conduct System.

The University reserves the right to follow the procedures outlined in the Student Conduct System if a student’s behavior violates the Student Code of Conduct, regardless of where the behavior occurs. The University will generally, but not exclusively, respond to off-campus behavior if an alleged violation occurs while a student is engaged in a PLU-sponsored or sanctioned event (i.e., study away, alternative spring break, athletics, music performance, outdoor recreation), the behavior raises concern for the safety of those on-campus or in the neighboring community, or the behavior jeopardizes the university’s interests in the community.

In addition, the university may follow the procedures outlined in the Student Conduct System whenever a student is accused of a criminal act, regardless of the location of its occurrence.

Pacific Lutheran University does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, age, mental or physical disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or any other status protected by law in the educational programs or activities which it operates. Numerous federal, state and local laws, including but not limited to the following federal laws, prohibit discrimination in educational programs, activities, admission to and employment at PLU: Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Title VI and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.


An essential dimension of Pacific Lutheran University’s mission is to provide for the intellectual, social, physical, emotional, and spiritual development of students.  Faculty, students, and administrators share responsibility for accomplishing these goals.  Academic integrity is honesty concerning all aspects of academic performance.  Academic integrity must be fully integrated into the campus academic environment, including norms for student life and classroom expectations.  Integration is best accomplished when faculty and students understand and accept standards of academic behavior, and when the standards are fairly and uniformly enforced.

The faculty’s authority over the classroom and grades reinforces the principles of academic integrity and the consequences of academic misconduct.  Expectations and policies regarding academic dishonesty should be clear within and across academic units, and the classroom should be conducted in a manner to support those policies.  Instructors need to know the following enforcement system and are obligated to use it when academic dishonesty occurs.  Enforcement supports honest students and promotes our commitment to academic integrity.  Enforcement also allows for the ability to better monitor the quantity and nature of academic dishonesty incidents and to track students who repeatedly commit acts of academic dishonesty so that such behavior by students is discouraged but dealt with accordingly.

PLU’s expectation is that students will not cheat or plagiarize, and that they will not condone these behaviors or assist others who cheat or plagiarize.  Academic misconduct not only jeopardizes the career of the individual student involved, but also undermines the scholastic achievements of all PLU students and attacks the mission of this institution.  Students are inherently responsible to do their own work, thereby insuring the integrity of their academic records.

Administrators shall disseminate this policy through publications and presentations to all students while the Campus Life Committee (CLC) shall also publicize this policy to all faculty.  Administrators must promote uniform interpretation and enforcement of this policy, and the CLC shall regularly report summarized data to the campus community concerning instances and outcomes of academic misconduct.  The CLC will review this policy every three years.

What is Academic Dishonesty?

PLU defines Academic Dishonesty as violating procedures prescribed to protect the integrity of an assignment, test, or other evaluation. The most common forms of academic dishonesty are cheating and plagiarism.

Cheating includes, but is not limited to:

  • Submitting material that is not yours as part of your course performance, such as submitting a downloaded paper off of the Internet; or
  • Using information or devices not allowed by the instructor (such as formulas or a computer program or data); or unauthorized materials (such as a copy of an examination before it is given); or
  • Fabricating information, such as data for a lab report; or
  • Collaborating with others on assignments without the instructor’s consent; or
  • Cooperating with or helping another student to cheat; or
  • Other forms of dishonest behavior, such as having another person take an exam for you, altering exam answers and requesting the exam be re-graded, or communicating with anyone other than a proctor or instructor during an exam.

Plagiarism occurs when one omits, misrepresents, or inaccurately documents how the work of others appears in and influences one’s own work.  Plagiarism can involve both products (such as words, formulas, or images) and ideas (such as ideas, intellectual approaches, or concepts), and can result from an intent to deceive or from a lack of due attention to the responsibilities of accurate documentation.

In short, plagiarism is the act of using any source (published, unpublished, or one’s own) that appears in or directly influences one’s own work without properly identifying it, such as (but not limited to):

  • Directly quoting the words of others without attribution and without using quotation marks or other accepted formats to identify them; or
  • Using any course work previously produced by the same student without prior approval from the current instructor; or,
  • Using altered wording, materials, or ideas of others without properly identifying their source; or
  • Representing an idea or strategy that is significant in one’s own work as one’s own when it comes from someone else.

Because plagiarism involves a misrepresentation of principles and processes fundamental to the integrity of the university, matters of plagiarism are taken very seriously by both administration and faculty.  If a student is unsure about something that they wants to do or the proper use of materials, it is the student’s responsibility to ask the instructor for clarification.

Reporting Suspected Academic Dishonesty

Generally, instructors are strongly encouraged to report any suspected violations of the university’s academic integrity policy (AIP) through formal channels by submitting an electronic Academic Dishonesty Report Form (ADRF) with appropriate documentation. When an instructor believes a student has violated the university’s AIP, they may, at their discretion, contact the student to inform the student of the issue.

When an ADRF is submitted, it will be sent to the Student Rights and Responsibilities Office (SRRO) for processing. The SRRO will inform the student than an ADRF has been filed and will provide the student with a copy of the AIP along with information on the review process.

Resolving an Academic Dishonesty Incident

When an instructor believes a student has violated the university’s AIP, they may resolve the incident in accordance with one of the following options. Instructors are encouraged to consult with any member of the CLC regarding these procedures.

  1. The instructor may meet informally with the student to resolve the matter.
  2. The instructor may ask to meet with the student in the presence of witnesses to resolve the matter.  In this case, the student will be informed in writing of the purpose of the meeting, and of their right to have a witness present.
    • If an instructor is unable to meet with a student, as at the end of Spring Term or a term before a student studies abroad, the instructor will document the suspected violation and send it to the student, via certified mail or email, together with a letter stating the penalty to be imposed.
  3. The instructor may submit an electronic ADRF with appropriate documentation and an indication of the severity of the violation.
    • The electronic ADRF has two checkbox options:
      • Minor Academic Dishonesty: This option indicates that the suspected violation was non-egregious, and that the student should receive additional education in order to avoid future violations or suspected violations. Instructors are encouraged to discuss the situation and the reasons for filing the report with the student.
      • Major Academic Dishonesty: This option indicates that the suspected violation was egregious, and that the student should receive a hearing from an Academic Dishonesty Hearing Panel (ADHP). Instructors are encouraged to discuss the situation and the reasons for filing the report with the student.
    • When an ADRF has been filed, it will generate one of the following outcomes:
      • Reports of Minor Academic Dishonesty
        • If a report of minor academic dishonesty is the first report that has been filed against a student, the SRRO will inform the student that an ADRF has been filed and that they must attend a mandatory meeting with the Director for Student Rights and Responsibilities or a designated university official, during which the student will receive additional education about academic integrity in an environment removed from perceived bias in order to avoid future violations or suspected violations.
          • In this meeting, no determination of responsibility will be made, but the student will be advised: 1) that the ADRF will remain on file 2) that it will be used to make determinations of responsibility if subsequent reports are submitted involving the student 3) of the possible sanctions that could be imposed if subsequent reports are submitted involving the student; and 4) that a single ADRF with a minor indicator will not be considered a student conduct record and will be automatically expunged from the student’s education record upon graduation. The student will also be directed to Academic Assistance, to their instructor, and to other resources that may help the student understand how to avoid future violations or suspected violations.
          • The instructor will be informed of the content of the mandatory meeting.
        • If a report of minor academic dishonesty is not the first report that has been filed against a student, it will be treated as a major report of academic dishonesty.
      • Reports of Major Academic Dishonesty
        • The SRRO will inform the student that an ADRF has been filed and initiate a hearing as outlined below in “Formal Hearing Process.”
  4. The instructor has the full authority to impose penalties with respect to their class. The minimum penalty grade for dishonesty in coursework that constitutes 30% or more of a course grade shall be an “E” for the course, unless the student is enrolled “pass/fail” in the class, and then the course grade will be an “F.” Dishonesty in other required course work shall result in a minimum penalty grade of zero for that work.

Occasions When an Academic Dishonesty Hearing Panel Must Be Called

  1. When academic dishonesty includes flagrant behavior.  Examples include, but are not limited to, having a substitute take an exam, fabricating experimental data, or buying a written term paper from someone.
  2. When more than one ADRF is filed for the same student at any time during that student’s PLU career.

Student Request for Formal Hearing

Students who disagree with a penalty imposed or the filing of an ADRF by an instructor may request a formal hearing by an ADHP.  Such a request must occur within five business days of notification of the grade in question or the notification of suspected academic dishonesty.  When filing such a request, the student must contact the CLC chair and provide a rationale for why they are challenging the instructor’s decision.  The CLC chair will then notify the instructor and coordinate a date and time for the formal hearing.  The student and instructor will be given at least 48-hours notice of the date, time and location of the formal hearing.

ADHP - Composition and Jurisdiction

An ADHP shall include two faculty and one student member assisted by the Director for Student Rights and Responsibilities or designee as a non-voting, advisory member.  During the academic year, faculty members will be appointed by the CLC chair from the faculty membership of the CLC; the student member will be appointed by the CLC chair from a pool of ten students (one appointed by the dean of each of the seven academic areas and three members appointed by ASPLU, all serving renewable one-year terms).  Every effort shall be made to conduct ADHPs during the academic year whenever possible.  In cases where conducting an ADHP during the summer months cannot be avoided, the Director for Student Rights and Responsibilities or designee will appoint available trained students to serve on ADHPs.  The Provost will also recruit, subsequently assign, and financially compensate available faculty from the membership of the previous academic year’s CLC to serve on ADHPs in these cases.  If members of the previous academic year’s CLC cannot be recruited, the Provost may ask faculty with 12-month contracts to fill these faculty positions on ADHPs.  A faculty chair for each ADHP shall be elected from its membership.  Training for potential ADHP members will be provided as needed by the Director for Student Rights and Responsibilities.

ADHPs are authorized to review and make decisions regarding allegations of misconduct brought by instructors, appeals from a student whose instructor has imposed penalties on them, student contests of the filing of an ADRF by a professor, and/or multiple alleged infractions of the policy, as identified by the Associate Director for Student Rights and Responsibilities.

Formal Hearing Process

The purpose of an ADHP is to determine whether a student is responsible for academic dishonesty as described in the university’s Academic Integrity policy.  ADHP hearings are structured educational discussions, which focus on the student’s alleged misconduct within the university community.

ADHP hearings will be convened in a timely fashion relative to the request, either at the student’s request or due to the filing of an Academic Dishonesty Report Form by an instructor who requires a panel hearing.  Instructors may attend ADHP hearings as a witness either if requested by the panel or at their own request. ADHPs are conducted as review meetings as described in the Student Conduct Procedures (Section VII – Review Procedures).  Throughout the review process, the following rights will be maintained and respected.

For the student, these include:

  • The right to receive a written notice of the date, time and place of the ADHP hearing and a copy of the relevant Academic Dishonesty Report Form, at least 48-hours in advance of the ADHP;
  • The right to have an individual ADHP hearing if more than one student is charged with misconduct;
  • The right to request disqualification of any ADHP member the student believes to be biased.  Final determination of disqualification is made by the CLC chair;
  • The right to have witnesses with direct knowledge of the incident in question speak on the student’s behalf (character witnesses are not permitted);
  • The right to have a support person who is a non-familial student, staff member, or faculty member of the university community (excepting a lawyer) assist them in the proceedings.  A support person who accompanies a student is present for emotional support only and may not speak on the student’s behalf;
  • The right to fair and impartial decision-makers;
  • The right to a written copy of the ADHP’s decision;
  • The right to a self-initiated appeal.

For the instructor alleging misconduct, these include:

  • The right to have a support person, as described above.
  • The right to be informed of the ADHP’s decision (excluding recommended sanctions that do not directly affect the instructor) at the same time the student is notified of the decision.  In cases in which the instructor disagrees with the ADHP’s decision, they may provide the Provost’s Office with a document asserting their dissent within three business days.

The chair of an ADHP oversees the review meeting while the Director for Student Rights and Responsibilities or designee responds to questions about an ADHP’s procedures, and may decide procedural matters not already established by an ADHP, with or without the advice of the other members.  Otherwise, a majority vote of the three voting members will decide a procedural question.  The chair is the spokesperson for an ADHP and is responsible for all communication on behalf of an ADHP.


The minimum penalty grade for dishonesty in coursework that constitutes 30% or more of a course grade shall be an “E” for the course, unless the student is enrolled “pass/fail” in the class, and then the course grade will be an “F”.  Dishonesty in other required course work shall result in a minimum penalty grade of zero for that work.

Academic Dishonesty Hearing Panels may render a finding of either “responsible,” “not responsible,” or “inconclusive.”  The ADHP shall use majority vote to reach decisions.  ADHP decisions of “not responsible” or “inconclusive” should not be used as a record of previous academic misconduct.

An ADHP is empowered, at its discretion, to take the following actions in accordance with its findings:

  • Recommend a change of grade to the instructor; and/or
  • Impose sanctions as listed in Section IX of the Student Conduct Procedures (except suspension, expulsion, or grade changes); and/or
  • Recommend suspension or expulsion of a student to the Provost.  Suspension and expulsion may be considered in severe cases and in cases where there is a previous history of academic dishonesty; grievous offenses such as academic dishonesty in capstones or culminating experiences may result in expulsion.  Penalties of suspension and expulsion must be endorsed by the Provost.  The Provost will convey their recommendation and reasons that support their position to the Dean of Students and confer with the Dean of Students regarding the import of the incident.  Sanctions of suspension or expulsion are imposed by the Dean of Students.  No specific mention of Academic Dishonesty will appear on the student’s transcript; however, suspensions and expulsions will be recorded as detailed in Section IX in the Student Conduct Procedures.

An ADHP may also recommend that the instructor reduce a penalty that the ADHP believes was arbitrary or too severe.  If an ADHP finds that academic dishonesty did not occur, it will recommend to the instructor that the penalty imposed be rescinded and for the instructor to grade the course work on its academic merit.

When the penalty grade is an “E” or an “F” for the course, the instructor will notify the Registrar that the student may not withdraw from the class.  The Registrar will not record a final grade for the course until the date for the student to request a formal hearing has passed.  Students requesting a formal hearing shall be permitted to attend and fully participate in the course until the process is complete.

Generally, ADHP decisions will be made within five business days of the formal hearing and will be either available for pick-up by the student at the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities or personally delivered to the student, or sent by certified mail to the student’s most recent local address, permanent address, or via email, whichever is most appropriate as decided by the chair of the ADHP.  The decision will include an outline of the appeal process.  In the event that additional time for review, further investigation and/or deliberation is required, the instructor(s) and student(s) involved will be notified in writing or via email of the revised timeline.

Student Appeal Process

All imposed sanctions may be appealed on the grounds of lack of a fair review or severity of sanction within five working days of being notified of the sanction.  Students who wish to appeal a sanction should submit a written request for appeal to the chair of the CLC.  The letter must include: the appeal date; a detailed explanation of the grounds for the appeal; any information that was not available at the time of the formal hearing, and the signature of the student filing the appeal.  Electronic submissions of appeals will be accepted.  In cases that do not involve suspension or expulsion, the appeal is submitted by the chair of the CLC to the Provost for consideration of the appeal of the ADHP’s decision.  In cases involving suspension or expulsion, the appeal will be forwarded to the Dean of Students for action by the Vice President for Student Life. Students may not appeal a sanction more than once.


The University expressly prohibits retaliation against any person who has reported academic misconduct to a member of the university community or who has participated in any way in the conduct of a case of academic misconduct or in the imposition of a sanction for academic misconduct.  Any person who violates this policy may be subject to disciplinary action, including suspension or expulsion from the university.

Maintenance of Records

Records of academic integrity violations will be maintained in accordance with the university’s Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) policy and the Student Conduct Procedures.  The records will be housed with the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities and will be kept according to the PLU Student Conduct Procedures.

The university is concerned about students and their total physical, mental, and emotional well-being.  The university recognizes that a complex cluster of student and social issues surround the use of alcohol in society and that student views concerning its use vary widely.  The following policy has been established in recognition of Washington State law and out of desire to create a living/learning environment consistent with the university goals and mission.  Community members participating in PLU sponsored study away programs are expected to respect the drinking laws of their host country while upholding the university policy outlined below.  Students living off campus are expected to adhere to local drinking laws.  Violations of local law may be considered violations of the PLU Alcoholic Beverages Policy. In the case where a student is violating the Alcoholic Beverages policy, the University reserves the right to confiscate and dispose of alcoholic beverages and/or containers found on the premises.

  1. Possession and/or consumption of Alcoholic Beverages Of Age: Possession of alcoholic beverages is prohibited in or on university premises, including residence halls, regardless of age. Empty alcohol containers and brewing equipment are similarly prohibited. The only exceptions include: Gonyea House (the President’s private residence), the Garfield Commons, events that use University’s Catering and request alcoholic beverages to be served, the University House (which is privately owned), a Community Director’s university housing, South Hall and Kreidler Halls (as outlined in the South Hall Alcoholic Beverages Policy and the Conference and Events summer policies), and for the purpose of approved religious worship.
  2. Possession and/or consumption of Alcoholic Beverages Under Age: The use or possession of alcoholic beverages is prohibited on campus and in the residence halls for any student under the age of 21.  Empty alcohol containers and brewing equipment are similarly prohibited.
  3. Misconduct under the Influence: Misconduct related to consumption, provision of alcohol to others or misuse of alcohol that creates risks for one’s safety, threatens the safety of others, detracts from the living-learning community, disrupts the university community either on or off campus may be a violation of PLU’s Alcoholic Beverages Policy.
  4. Providing Alcohol to Others/Minors: Students who provide alcohol to students under the age of 21, or provide alcohol to apparently intoxicated individuals students, in addition to providing alcohol to students in non-designated areas, are in violation of the expectations of the living-learning community.
  5. In The Presence of Alcohol: Students who are present when an Alcoholic Beverages Policy is being violated are expected to remove themselves from the room/situation and are encouraged to report the violation. Students who do not leave will be documented on an incident report and referred to the Student Conduct System. See Residence Hall Communities Policy for further information.
  6. Transport/Medical Attention: Students who need medical attention due to their alcohol consumption, or which threatens the safety of themselves or others, either on or off campus, may be in violation of the PLU’s Alcoholic Beverages policy.
  7. Event Guidelines: If approved alcoholic beverages are available at PLU sponsored off-campus events, then non-alcoholic beverages must also be available. Students must show current valid identification (driver’s license and PLU ID) in order to obtain alcoholic beverages at PLU sponsored on or off-campus functions. At any event sponsored by PLU, alcoholic beverages must be refused to minors, apparently intoxicated individuals, or persons in a state of helplessness.

Use of student government funds or residence hall dues and funds to purchase alcoholic beverages is prohibited.

Students voluntarily seeking assistance for an alcohol-related problem may do so without fear of disciplinary action, and will be treated with the utmost sensitivity and confidentiality.  Such assistance may be sought through a residence hall staff member; the Residential Life Office, 253-535-7200; Health Center, 253-535-7337; Counseling Center, 253-535-7206; Campus Ministry, 253-535-7464; Campus Safety 253-535-7441; and the Office of Student Life, 253-535-7191.  Students who are documented for violating the alcohol policy, and who subsequently request assistance for alcohol related problems, are not exempt from the review process or any sanctions that may result.

Students who bring guests onto campus and to PLU events are responsible for informing their guest(s) of conduct appropriate to the university. PLU students may be held responsible for the conduct of the guest(s) during the visit, and may be subject to conduct proceedings if their guest is in violation of a campus policy.

It is the responsibility of all members of the university community to care for the security of the buildings.

Unauthorized presence in campus buildings, academic rooms, or residence hall rooms is prohibited and may be cause for action via the Student Conduct System and/or referral to a local law enforcement agency.  Locked or closed buildings may be entered only with permission of supervisory personnel.

The unauthorized duplication of any university key and/or LuteCard or the use of an unauthorized key and/or LuteCard is prohibited and may be cause for action via the Student Conduct System and/or referral to a local law enforcement agency.

In the residence halls, students are urged to report the presence of unaccompanied and/or unknown non-residents to hall staff or Campus Safety.

Students are expected to adhere to safety and security with campus buildings. Persons and/or items should not be passed through windows in the residence halls or other campus buildings. Persons are also not allowed on rooftops or other unauthorized areas within the residence halls and/or campus buildings.

Pacific Lutheran University provides Information Technology (IT) services in support of the university’s educational mission.  IT services include computer labs, data and voice networks, classroom and instructional technologies, and the Banner student information system.  Policies related to these services extend also to copyright infringement, content accessed or downloaded over the network (even with personally owned computers), and appropriate use of all modes of electronic communication within PLU systems.  These policies are maintained and available for review at:

Use of IT services is a privilege granted to PLU to students, faculty, and staff for learning and working in community.  All members of the PLU community are expected to comply with PLU IT policies.

If a student is in violation of the Computer or Network Use policy, students will be required to remove the copyrighted materials, and may have network privileges removed until all misuse is corrected.

The University holds as basic the safety and well-being of every person in the community. Students are therefore expected to demonstrate common sense and good judgment in all areas where safety, health and cleanliness are concerned.  The University prohibits activities that cause or threaten mental, emotional or physical harm, suffering or exhaustion; or which may cause damage or constitute a safety or health hazard for the university and/or its component parts, as well as for self and/or others.  Such actions are subject to referral to Student Rights and Responsibilities.  The University reserves the right to restrict students whose behavior violates this policy from campus until professional clearance is obtained that indicates the student may return without posing a threat to the University and/or its component parts, or to others.

The Concern for Self and Others policy has been applied in a broad spectrum of cases. It is, of course, not possible to list all forms of conduct that could be considered a violation of this policy.  The following are examples of conduct that could violate the Concern for Self and Others policy, but they are provided for illustration only and should not be considered all inclusive.  In addition to incidents that obviously fit into this policy description such as threatening others or disrupting the safety and effectiveness of the residence hall living/learning environments, Concern for Self and Others is applied to incidents involving pranks, presence on rooftops, throwing items out of University building windows, and others.

The university reserves the right to confiscate items considered illegal, hazardous or harmful to the community, and those items that are prohibited per university policy. PLU, in its sole discretion, may dispose of any confiscated materials.

The University holds as basic the integrity and well-being of every person in the community. PLU is committed to providing a living, learning and working environment that is fair, consistent, caring, and supportive of intellectual and personal growth. Further, PLU is committed to protecting the rights of its community members to engage in dialogue and express ideas in an environment that is free from harassment, discrimination, and exploitation. This freedom of expression does not, however, entail the freedom to threaten, stalk, intimidate, harass, or abuse.

Students are therefore expected to treat every individual with respect and civility. The University prohibits any activities which cause or threaten physical or mental harm, suffering or exhaustion, which demean the dignity of any individual, and/or which interfere with one’s academic progress, living environment or employment responsibilities.

Students are also expected to demonstrate respect and good judgment by acting in a manner that is appropriate to the university setting, on campus or while engaged in a University sponsored activity. Disruption or obstruction of teaching, research, administration, or any PLU sponsored activity is prohibited.

Individuals who directly or indirectly demand unreasonable access to university resources or disrupt community business by denying others the ability to live, learn and work in the environment that PLU seeks to maintain for all community members may be found responsible for disrupting university community.

The University reserves the right to restrict students whose behavior violates this policy from campus until professional clearance is obtained that indicates the student may return without posing a continued disruption to the university, residential communities or to others who learn and work at the university.

Students who do not attend a Student Conduct Review Meeting without making prior arrangements also may be found responsible for disrupting university community. (See Student Conduct Procedures, “Section IV – Student Rights and Responsibilities“, Subsection A.)

The Disruption of University Community policy has been applied in a broad spectrum of cases. It is, of course, not possible to list all forms of conduct that could be considered a violation of this policy. The examples provided are of conduct that could violate the Disruption of University Community policy, but they are provided for illustration only and should not be considered all inclusive. In addition to incidents that obviously fit into this policy description such as harassing a staff member, Disruption of University Community has been applied to incidents involving pranks, public urination, classroom disruption, and others.

Pacific Lutheran University is committed to providing equal opportunity in education for all students without regard to a person’s race, color, national origin, creed, religion, age, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, mental or physical disability, or any other status protected by law. The university community will not tolerate any unlawful discrimination, harassment, or abuse of or toward any member of the university community.

The university holds as basic the integrity and well-being of every person in the community. It is committed to providing an educational environment which is fair, consistent, caring, and supportive of intellectual and personal growth. Further, it is committed to protecting the rights of its community members to engage in dialog and to express ideas in an environment which is free from harassment, discrimination, and exploitation. This freedom of expression does not, however, entail the freedom to threaten, intimidate, harass, or abuse.

The university prohibits any activities which cause or threaten physical or mental harm, suffering, or exhaustion; which demean the dignity and personhood of any individual; or which interfere with one’s academic progress. Examples of such actions are verbal threats or abuse, harassment, intimidation, stalking, threatened or actual physical assault, or consistent disregard of the rights and welfare of others. In particular, the university will see as a violation of this policy, any behavior which communicates a message that is threatening, intimidating, or demeaning or which causes physical harm to a person or persons because of race, color, national origin, creed, religion, age, gender, gender identity, marital status, sexual orientation, mental or physical disability, or any other status protected by federal, state, or local law. Any person or persons who are found to have violated this policy will be subject to disciplinary action up to and including suspension, expulsion, or termination.

University equipment may be used only for university functions during the hours and at the locations that have been approved through advanced scheduling. A violation of equipment misuse may come with a fine, which includes any damage to the equipment, and potential probation of using university equipment in the future.

Students who provide false information to a university member or who forge, alter or misuse university documents or records may be subject to Student Rights and Responsibilities and/or local law enforcement action.

Everyone must leave the building when the fire alarm sounds.  Obstructing or discouraging participation in a building evacuation will be subject to disciplinary action.  Any prank, joke or other intentional act involving fire (including alarm covers, alarms, extinguishers or smoke alarms) is prohibited and will be subject to disciplinary action and/or local law enforcement action.  Please review “Prohibited Possessions” in the current PLU Housing and Meal Plan Guide and Contract for additional items related to Fire Safety in the Residence Halls. If a student has a prohibited item in their possession, Residential Life personnel or Campus Safety personnel may confiscate the item, in addition to the student being subject to disciplinary action.

Items potentially hazardous to members of the campus community are prohibited.  This policy applies to the campus, university vehicles and at any university sponsored off-campus event.

Students who are aware of a weapon on campus are encouraged to make a report with Campus Safety at 253-535-7441 or call the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department anonymous gun hotline at 1-800-862-4867.

Given recent events on university campuses, PLU students are expected to demonstrate common sense and good judgment when engaging in activities using toy or fake firearms, explosives or weapons (i.e., water guns, Nerf guns, Nerf swords, etc.). It must be obvious that these items are toys and they must be used in a way that cannot be perceived as threatening or real to a reasonable standard (i.e., playing Russian Roulette, Assassins, etc.). In instances where toy firearms, explosives, or weapons are not used with good judgment, PLU may initiate the Student Conduct process in relation to this and/or the Concern for Self and Others policy in addition to potentially confiscating the item(s).

PLU has a zero-tolerance policy for firearms and all guns are prohibited on-campus.  Guns include, but are not limited to: air-soft guns, bb guns, stun guns, flare guns, toy guns designed to replicate authentic, operable guns, paint guns and pellet guns.

Explosive materials, including but not limited to, firecrackers, fireworks and other explosives, live ammunition, combustible liquids (except where authorized for university use) and flares are prohibited on-campus.

Weapons, including but not limited to: hunting weapons, swords; knives (e.g. hunting knives, switch blades, etc.) and martial arts weapons are prohibited.  Additionally, possession of any instrument or weapon of the kind usually known as sling shot, and club, or metal knuckles, or spring blade knife, or any knife, the blade of which is automatically released by a spring mechanism or other mechanical device, or any knife having a blade which opens, or falls, or is ejected into position by the force of gravity, or by an outward, downward or centrifugal thrust or movement, or any pocket knife with a blade length longer than three inches, are prohibited.

Kitchen knives will be allowed in the residential halls, but are to be used for food preparation purposes only, and must be stored in individual student rooms and/or kitchens.

Self-defense items (examples include but are not limited to, mace, pepper spray, electronic shock devices including nonlethal stun guns) are allowed on the PLU campus, but must be used for self-defense purposes only. Please note that projectile stun guns are prohibited from campus property. If these self-defense items are used in ways other than the intended self-defense purpose, this will constitute a violation of the PLU Weapons policy, and PLU has the ability to confiscate the item.

Students who function and live in a university environment are encouraged to exercise freedom of expression and to participate responsibly in the freedoms of membership in a democratic society. Every student has the right to express a personal opinion as long as it does not infringe on the rights of others, disrupt community or university functions, or otherwise violate university policy, or local, state or federal laws.

The university welcomes opportunities for students, faculty, staff and community members to come in direct contact with issues, candidates and the political process. While the university does not endorse a specific political party or candidate(s), recognized campus organizations may present educational programs on campus that are consistent with the university’s mission and policies. Such programs may include candidates and political party activities so long as the activities do not disrupt or obstruct university business. All such activities must be scheduled in accordance with university guidelines and procedures.

All university facilities, including materials, are to be paid for personally. University stationery and envelopes are not to be used for private matters.

Pacific Lutheran University does not permit wagering or games of chance on campus or at scheduled events off campus. Recognized student clubs and organizations are authorized to conduct events that include raffles, casino activities and auctions, provided participants do not pay for participation and the event is approved by the Student Engagement (SE) Office.

Students planning fundraising activities need to request permission from the SE Office and meet with SE staff to review compliance with PLU policy and Washington State law.

Students voluntarily seeking assistance for a gambling-related problem may do so without fear of disciplinary action, and will be treated with the utmost sensitivity and confidentiality. Such assistance may be sought through a residence hall staff member; the Residential Life Office, 253-535-7200; Health Center, 253-535-7337; Counseling Center, 253-535-7206; Campus Ministry, 253-535-7464; and the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities, 253-535-7462. Students who are documented for violating the gambling policy, and who subsequently request assistance for gambling related problems, are not exempt from the review process or any sanctions that may result.

Each student, upon showing their PLU ID card, may bring a maximum of three guests to scheduled university events for which no fee is charged. Those events that charge a fee reserve the right to limit the number of guests each student may bring if appropriate.

The University reserves the right to declare a guest unwelcome, when the guest has violated a regulation, code, or rule. Guest behavior that violates this policy may result in separation from all university grounds, facilities and services. Persons who are designated as Restricted From Campus (RFC) are not allowed to be guests on campus, reside in PLU housing or attend PLU off-campus events.

Guests who are violators of this policy are viewed as trespassers and are subject to arrest.  (See also, Visitation and Guests in Residence Halls)

PLU is first and foremost an educational institution. Hazing prevention policies, and response procedures for hazing incidents, grow from and embody the institution’s mission. Membership in clubs, organizations, and other university-affiliated groups can increase leadership and service potential; provide athletic, recreational, intellectual and spiritual opportunities; and otherwise contribute positively to personal and social development of our students. Where membership is linked with involvement in hazing activities, the educational purpose of the endeavor is compromised and safety of students is endangered. Hazing is therefore prohibited by university policy.

A. Policy Statement and Definition

In conjunction with Washington State Law (RCW 28B.10.901 and RCW 28B.10.902), PLU defines hazing as any act of initiation (committed by a person, whether individually or in concert with others) into a student organization, athletic team or living group, or any pastime or amusement engaged in with respect to that organization or group with or without the consent of the participant(s), which:

  1. causes, or is likely to cause, bodily danger or physical harm, or serious mental, emotional or psychological harm to any student or other person; or
  2. may abuse, mistreat, degrade, humiliate, harass, ridicule, intimidate or endanger him or her, or which may in any fashion compromise his or her inherent dignity as a person; or
  3. subjects a student or other person to conduct or conditions which a reasonable person in the circumstances would find harmful, including but not limited to
    • excessive mental or physical discomfort
    • alcohol or drug abuse
    • physical confinement
    • abandonment
    • verbal or physical abuse
    • or substantial interference with the person’s educational pursuits; or
  4. otherwise involves a violation of a law or University policy or which encourages a student or other person to violate a law or University policy, including but not limited to the “Student Code of Conduct”, “Alcohol and Drug Policy”, and “Sexual Harassment Policy”.

Hazing also includes soliciting, directing, aiding, or otherwise participating actively or passively in such acts. Hazing occurs regardless of the consent or willingness of persons to participate in the activity. Hazing is prohibited no matter if it occurs on or off campus.

B. Sanctions

  1. Individual Sanctions: A student who participates in or encourages hazing shall be subject to disciplinary action by the University through its Student Conduct Code and Procedures. Hazing that endangers a person’s mental or physical safety is also a criminal offense. As required by state law, a student who participates in criminal hazing, in addition to the possibility of being subject to prosecution shall forfeit any entitlement to state-funded grants, scholarships, or awards for a period of time determined by the university, but not less than one academic term.
  2. Group Sanctions: A student organization or living group that permits hazing to occur by its members or by others, subject to its direction or control, shall itself be subject to sanctions, including but not limited to the University’s withdrawal of its recognition of the group. Violations of the hazing policy by athletic team members will result in department-imposed sanctions, which may include department service dismissal from the team or cancellation of competition. In addition, the organization or group may be liable under state law for resulting harm to persons or property.

Pacific Lutheran University provides students with a free university identification card at the time of the student’s enrollment.  This card, called a LuteCard, is the property of PLU. LuteCards support many privileges granted to members of the PLU community.  These privileges include access to events, facilities and parking areas, meal plan access, convenient purchasing power and identification for university business.  Students must carry their LuteCard with them at all times while on campus.  Failure to provide a LuteCard to university staff members who are performing their job function may result in disciplinary action. (Note: See “False Information” and “Non-Cooperation sections.)  Cards deemed unusable may be confiscated or refused by university employees performing their job functions.  Unusable or confiscated cards must be replaced at the holder’s expense.

As university property, LuteCards must not be altered or defaced in any manner. LuteCards and the privileges they support are not transferable. Under no circumstance is a student to provide their LuteCard to another individual to use for any purpose. Under no circumstance is a student to use a LuteCard issued to another member of the PLU community for any purpose. Unless reported lost, students are responsible for any use or misuse of their LuteCard. Misuse of a LuteCard may result in confiscation of the card and disciplinary action via the Student Conduct system. Any student found to be in violation of this policy via the Student Conduct system is subject to removal of privileges supported by the LuteCard and/or responsible for restitution for financial damages caused by misuse.

Students are responsible for reporting lost LuteCards and replacing their LuteCard immediately at their own expense. Cards must be returned upon graduation or withdrawal from the university. The LuteCard and Information Center is located on the main floor of the University Center.

The following policy has been established in recognition of federal law and Washington State law, and out of a desire to create a living/learning environment consistent with the university goals and mission. Community members participating in PLU sponsored study away programs are expected to respect the drug laws of their host country while upholding the university policy outlined below.

The unauthorized possession, use, distribution, and/or sale of the following is prohibited:

  • Illegal drugs (illegal drugs include, but are not limited to, those categories often known as cannabis, acids, hallucinogens, barbiturates, amphetamines, and narcotics).
  • Prescription medications.
  • Any other substance identified to be dangerous by PLU, in its sole discretion.
  • Drug paraphernalia.

Students voluntarily seeking assistance for a drug-related problem may do so without fear of disciplinary action, and will be treated with the utmost sensitivity and confidentiality.  Such assistance may be sought through a residence hall staff member; the Residential Life Office, 253-535-7200; Health Center, 253-535-7337; Counseling Center, 253-535-7206; Campus Ministry, 253-535-7464; Campus Safety 253-535-7441; and the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities, 253-535-7462.

Students who are documented for violating the drug policy, and who subsequently request assistance for drug-related problems, are not exempt from the review process or any sanctions that may result.

Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act

Each student will be notified of PLU’s policy on alcohol and drugs posted on the web.  The information describes health risks associated with alcohol abuse and illicit drug use, legal sanctions, disciplinary sanctions, and resources for counseling and treatment.

All full-time and part-time undergraduate and graduate students who are accepted into degree programs are required to provide to PLU’s Health Center documentation of their immunizations for measles, mumps, and rubella. Documentation means official records signed by a health care professional. Students with a PLU Medical History Record and immunizations in compliance with the PLU Immunization Policy on file with the Health Center are considered cleared. Those students not in compliance are placed on medical hold and will not be allowed to register, drop or change classes after their initial (entry) registration.

Any student born before January 1, 1957 is considered immune to measles, mumps, and rubella. Students born after January 1, 1957 must provide records for required immunizations. The full-text of this policy is available online at

Any questions concerning immunizations should be directed to PLU’s Health Center at 253-535-7337.

PLU is an integral part of Parkland, and therefore all members of the PLU community have a responsibility for the quality of the greater Parkland neighborhood. PLU expects all students to act safely, legally and neighborly and may intervene if students’ behavior off-campus negatively impacts campus-neighbors or the on-campus community.

Any PLU student who lives off campus may be required to meet with a University official or referred to Student Rights and Responsibilities if the student engages in or acquiesces in behavior that results in (1) complaints by their neighbors; and/or (2) intervention by law enforcement. Any such incident will be recorded in the student’s conduct file for future reference. Any student who fails to participate in the meeting with the University official or the Student Conduct process will also be referred to Student Conduct for a “Disruption of University Community” policy violation.

Residence Halls

Students are expected to realize that in a community setting, and especially in an academic environment, consideration and courtesy for others is a most important factor at all times. While it is a fact that some amount of noise is bound to occur, students who continually infringe on the rights of others by maintaining unacceptable noise levels will be subject to disciplinary action. Students are expected to comply with all designated quiet hours. Residence hall quiet hours are minimally established from 10:00 pm to 8:00 am Sunday through Thursday and 12:00 am to 10:00 am Friday and Saturday. These hours may be extended by the individual hall communities.


Between 8:00 am to 10:00 pm, noise on campus is to be kept to a level that does not disturb university classes or business. Between 10:00 pm – 8:00 am, quiet hours are in effect and noise on campus is to be kept to a minimum.

Faculty, staff and student workers at PLU are charged with responsibilities appropriate to their training and authority. Students are expected to comply with the directions of any university employee acting in performance of their duty. Students involved in violations of university policies are expected to be responsible for their actions and to accurately identify themselves to university employees when requested to do so. Any individual who believes that an employee has made an inappropriate request is encouraged to talk with the employee’s supervisor or a grievance facilitator.

The university recognizes the important role of pets in the lives of some employees and students. This defines the policies within which pet visits to campus are welcome.

For the purposes of this policy, the following definitions will apply:

Pet Owner: Anyone working or studying at the university, including faculty, staff, administrators, students, temporary employees, or others who bring a pet to campus.

Pet: A domestic animal that is owned by, resides with, and is cared for by an employee or student. This will include dogs, cats, and fish in aquariums holding less than 25 gallons of water. For the purposes of this policy, pets are not snakes, ferrets, rats and spiders. Those with questions about domestic animals that are not specifically addressed here should call the offices listed at the end of this policy statement. Decisions about the appropriateness of bringing a pet to campus will be made on any potential risk to the pet and to people in the community, and to the perceived disruptions caused by the pet.

University Commitment

The University will ensure that applicable legal requirements are met. These include, but are not necessarily limited to:

Washington Industrial Safety and Health Act (WISHA), Responsibility: The university has a general duty to create a safe and healthful working environment for employees.

  • Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Responsibility: The university must provide reasonable accommodations for employees and students with documented disabilities as defined by law. This policy recognizes that Service Animals, under the ADA, are accepted on the PLU campus. Service Animals are defined as dogs that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities. Service Animals are not defined as “pets.”
  • The work or task a dog has been trained to provide must be directly related to the person’s disability. Dogs or animals whose sole function is to provide comfort or emotional support do not qualify as service animals under the ADA. Service Animals must be harnessed, leashed, or tethered, unless these devices interfere with the service animal’s work or the individual’s disability prevents using these devices. In that case, the individual must maintain control of the animal through voice, signal, or other effective controls.
  • Service Animals are allowed to accompany people with disabilities in all areas of campus where the public is normally allowed to go.

Allowed and Restricted Areas

In consideration for the general well-being, health and safety of all members of the campus community, the following lists detail areas where pets are allowed and restricted areas.

Areas Of Campus Where Pets Are Allowed

  1. Outdoors, on leash, and accompanied by pet owner.
  2. Individual private offices with walls and door. This includes the private office of the pet owner as well as the private offices of colleagues of the pet owner, where advance permission has been obtained from that person. For example, a pet owner may bring their pet to a small meeting in a colleague’s private office, provided that the colleague has given permission to the pet owner to do so. (Note: see exceptions under “Restricted” section below.)
  3. All areas used by employees or students with documented disabilities who are assisted by designated guide or working pets.
  4. Classrooms and instructional facilities only when pets or demonstration animals are used by faculty members for teaching purposes.

Restricted Areas

Pets are not allowed in locations or situations other than those noted as allowed in the previous section. Such areas of campus where pets are not allowed include:

  1. Areas that are open to the public and commonly used, such as libraries, foyers, bathrooms, copy rooms, lounges, meeting and conference rooms, except as necessary to travel en- route to permitted locations.
  2. Classrooms and training labs (except for instructional purposes as noted above).
  3. Dining and food preparation areas; kitchenettes; break-rooms.
  4. Health and medical facilities.
  5. Private offices that are essentially public areas due to the frequency with which they are visited by others and used for meetings.
  6. The Anderson University Center.
  7. Computing and Telecommunications machine room.
  8. Residence halls and offices in residence hall buildings, except as allowed per Student Life Division policies. (Note: see Residence Hall Communities section below.)
  9. Any area or situation in which another person has raised a legitimate concern for health or other reasons about the presence of a pet, except for designated guide or working pets assisting employees or students with documented disabilities.

Residence Halls

No pets other than fish are allowed in the residence halls. Aquariums may not exceed 25 gallons of water.

Pet Owner Commitment

Employees and students are welcome to bring pets into the working and learning environment in accordance with this policy and PLU’s “Pets in the Workplace” procedures.  Pets must be cared for in a responsible manner that ensures the safety of those on campus, as well as the safety of the pet.

Copies of the procedures will be available at Human Resource Services. It is the responsibility of the pet owner to obtain and follow the procedures.


Before bringing a pet to campus, the pet owner will check first with others in the work or learning environment to ensure that there are no concerns, such as allergies to dogs, etc. In the event of legitimate health problems, the pet may not be brought to that area. Otherwise, employees and/or students are encouraged to work together to find a reasonable compromise that is acceptable to everyone. If the pet owner requires the animal’s presence due to a documented disability, then reasonable accommodation will be made through the appropriate channels

Lab Animals

Procedures governing the use of lab animals in Rieke Science Center or other locations and situations will be addressed by the Division of Natural Sciences, the Animal Usage Committee, and/or other appropriate offices and committees.


Employee questions about this policy should be directed to Human Resource Services at 253-535-7185. Student residence hall questions should be directed to Residential Life at 253-535-7200.

Physical attacks on another and/or an attempt or threat to harm another will not be tolerated at PLU. A student reacting to physical attack, or the threat of physical attack, with the use of physical contact may be referred to Student Conduct for alleged physical assault. Unwanted physical contact by one person upon another may also constitute assault.

University property and services may be used only for university functions during the hours and at the locations that have been approved through advance scheduling. Inappropriate use of university property and/or services may result in referral to the student conduct system.

Attempted or actual theft of and/or damage and/or vandalism to university property or the property of a member of the PLU community are prohibited.  In addition, knowingly possessing or utilizing stolen property, or being a bystander to damage or vandalism will also be seen as a violation of this policy.  Students reported for property damage and/or theft are subject to one or more of the following: (a) prosecution for criminal charges; (b) assessment of the costs for repair, replacement or recovery of the property; and/or, (c) university and/or disciplinary action via the student conduct process.

The university has determined that some control of and procedure for commercial solicitation and advertising is needed to:

  1. Maintain a community respectful of individual right to privacy;
  2. Regulate the means by which commercial advertising occurs on private property;
  3. Offer procedure for students and businesses to request appeal of policy issues.

The intent of Pacific Lutheran University’s solicitation policy is to maintain the community living rights extended to all students, staff and faculty. Basics tenants of this policy include:

  1. The University will maintain its community standards in the advertisement or promotion of commercial interests, goods, services, events, etc.
  2. Publicity must not interfere with satisfactory maintenance of university property;
  3. Publicity must not limit the orderly operation of university affairs. Distribution by means of accosting individuals or hawking is not permitted.

Commercial Solicitation

Commercial solicitation is not permitted on the campus of Pacific Lutheran University. Companies and their representatives, student representatives of commercial and/or personal enterprises, and employees of Pacific Lutheran University may not: post or distribute promotional materials on-campus or using PLU electronic resources; attempt to make sales through phone, room-to-room or electronic contacts.

Exceptions to this policy are as follows:

  1. Officially recognized student organizations may use the avenues discussed below for purposes of solicitation and/or promotion of their programs and the programs of other organizations that have been approved.
  2. Within guidelines specified in this policy, individual students may advertise the sale of their personal goods, such as books, or their personal services, such as car rides or typing.
  3. The Residential Life Office, in consultation with the Residence Hall Association and/or the Community Directors, may authorize individuals or organizations to post promotional materials on residence hall bulletin boards or sell items in the lobby of individual residence halls if it is deemed to be of service to students, and following standard procedures does not seem the best approach. Those seeking approval must complete a request form that may be obtained in the Residential Life Office. Those approved will be given approval in writing and are asked to carry that written approval when conducting business.
  4. Sales persons who are not members of the university community may be on campus, as it relates to sales, for the following reasons only:
  5. to meet students with whom they have previously made appointments;
  6. to make a request for an exception to the Residential Life Office;
  7. to discuss the policy on solicitation with the university administration.

The presence of door-to-door salespersons on campus shall be reported to the Residential Life Office, the Student Engagement Office, and/or Campus Safety Office.

Approved Types of Solicitation, Advertisement, and Promotions for Student Organizations on Campus

University affiliated groups, organizations, or publications will advertise or sponsor only those commercial interests, goods, services, events, etc., that are legal or permitted on campus. (Alcohol, guns, gambling and credit cards may not be advertised or promoted, consistent with the University’s ban on such items.) This restriction does not apply to the editorial content of student media. Editorial content includes all non-advertising material.

  • Publications, Event Brochures, Sponsorships: Recognized student organizations are authorized to solicit revenue from non-university businesses for advertising, sponsorship and promotional support of events. In keeping with university community standards that prohibit alcohol (and alcohol containers), and weapons (as described in the PLU Student Code of Conduct “Firearms, Explosives, or Weapons” section), campus groups are restricted from advertising/publicity that encourages or promotes possession, consumption, or use. Advertising/publicity/sponsorship is restricted from businesses that are open only to adults 21 years and older.

Pacific Lutheran University community standards strongly encourage individual choices that do not put students at risk of incurring credit card or gambling debt. To support this, standard campus organizations are restricted from soliciting revenue from credit card purveyors or businesses engaged in gambling, including, but not limited to, casinos and online gambling activities.

  • Use of Residence Hall Mailboxes: The use of residence hall mailboxes by student organizations is permitted with the approval of the respective Community Director. United States mail addressed to individual students, regardless of its nature is approved for distribution.
  • Room-to-Room Contact: Room-to-room student contact by student organizations is permitted for purposes of program promotion or election campaigning. It includes placing promotional materials under the doors of individual residents. This type of contact is subject to the approval of the Residential Life Office (who will consult with both Residence Hall Association and the Community Directors).
  • Campus Bulletin Boards:
  1. Commercial advertising signs are not permitted except when sponsored by a university department (e.g., the bookstore, athletic department), ASPLU, or Residence Hall Association, or when the Residential Life and/or Student Engagement determine they are in the general interest of the university community.
  2. Except for the residence hall bulletin boards, all university bulletin boards are classified as either general or reserved. Only “general” university bulletin boards may be used for commercial advertising purposes. These boards are located in the Columbia Center, Karen Hille Phillips Auditorium, Hauge Administration Building, Ingram Hall, Memorial Gymnasium, Mortvedt Library, Olson Auditorium, University Center and Xavier Hall. All materials posted on boards must be approved for posting and be stamped accordingly or they will be removed. Approval for general bulletin boards may be obtained in the ASPLU Office, and in the Residential Life office for residence halls. Posters will be removed within 24-hours of the event.
  3. Students who wish to advertise personal goods (such as books) or services (such as rides) may use residence hall bulletin boards with the approval of the Community Director.
  4. To maintain the beauty of campus, no promotional materials may be affixed to trees, shrubbery, light standards, benches, sculptures, signs, vehicles, trash receptacles, fire hydrants, flag poles, or exteriors of buildings.
  • Chalking: All chalking must be approved by Student Engagement. Students must submit a Chalk Advertising Request Form to the Student Engagement office if you would like to chalk on campus. Chalk that is not approved will be washed off as it is noticed. Any group or individual not following these instructions or chalking in unapproved areas will not be allowed to chalk in the future.
  1. Do not chalk within 25 feet of any door
  2. Do not chalk under any overhang
  3. Do not chalk on brick
  4. Do not chalk on Synthetic Surfaces
  5. Alternate sidewalk blocks so you do not chalk on every one
  6. Chalking on any vertical surface (buildings or walls) is strictly prohibited
  7. The use of markers, paints, oil-based products, or spray chalk is prohibited
  8. Chalking may not occur in the following spaces: Red Square, AUC Atrium, MBR Amphitheatre, Soccer field, baseball field, track, or tennis courts.
  • Lawn Signs: Lawn signs must not be used for individual purposes or to advertise student events or programs on campus. Any unauthorized signs will be removed, and the individual or organization may be subject to a conduct violation.
    1. If any club or organization feel they should have an exemption, students must meet with the Office of Student Engagement and follow instructions as given.

A student or group of students may represent the university with written authority from the university (e.g., the chairperson of the appropriate department, the advisor of an organization, etc.). Otherwise, students must not use the name of Pacific Lutheran University to imply university endorsements of private activities or business endeavors. Individuals, students, or organizations may not use either university business telephones or addresses for private business endeavors.

The quality of PLU’s residential communities is everyone’s responsibility. Off-campus students are expected to abide by the Residential Life policies when visiting the halls. Students who are present when a policy is being violated are expected to remove themselves from the room/situation and are encouraged to report the violation. Students who do not leave will be documented in an Incident Report and referred to the Student Conduct System. For more information about living on campus, please see the Residential Life Policies.

Residential students are responsible for all activity in their rooms, even if a guest or visitor allegedly commits the violation, and/or if the student is not in the room at the time of the violation. Individuals residing in South Hall are responsible for all activity in common areas of their apartment as well as the bedroom to which they are assigned.

The University will furnish each student with a single bed, desk, chair, room light, dresser, closet, and blinds in each residence hall room. University furnishings may not be removed from student rooms, lounges, or halls. All attached room furnishings must remain attached. Penalties for moving such furnishings may include fines and/or disciplinary proceedings, without prior permission from the Director of Residential Life or designee. Non-PLU lofts/bunks are prohibited on-campus. All lofts/bunks must only be University provided, and be checked out through the University.

Pacific Lutheran University requires that all single, full-time students live in university housing unless:

  • Living at home with parent, spouse, or child within 25 miles of PLU’s address.
  • 20 years of age or Junior Status (60 semester hours) on or before September 1 to be exempt for the academic year, or on or before February 1 to be exempt for the spring semester.

Students in violation of the Residency Requirement will be referred to the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities for disciplinary action.

Pacific Lutheran University’s Sexual Misconduct policy covers student to student-related concerns of Sexual Harassment, Sexual Assault and Sexual Misconduct, Dating Violence or Domestic Violence (“Relationship Violence”) and Stalking. Please see the Sexual Misconduct Policy in its entirety.

Pacific Lutheran University supports all of our community members taking part in social media and posting, blogging, or tweeting about their experiences. While there are great opportunities within social media, there is also the possibility of a host of unintended consequences. Pacific Lutheran University does not monitor all activity on social media; however, if social media activity that is deemed inappropriate or offensive is brought to the attention of PLU, actions may be taken. Specifically, if a social media activity is connected (either formally or informally) or tagged in reference to Pacific Lutheran University, students are expected to adhere to expectations and standards of the institution. These following guidelines are intended to help all students understand these implications and the risks associated with participating in social media.

When Posting as an Individual

Pacific Lutheran University uses social media to supplement press and marketing efforts. PLU encourages and supports students and community members to share University news, events, and happenings over social media. It is important to acknowledge that when social media is used for personal purposes, but connects to Pacific Lutheran University, that individual might be perceived as an agent or expert of PLU, and be associated with PLU and the University’s mission. Students should understand that by mentioning PLU or sharing PLU’s information over social media, they are automatically serving as a representative of the University, and need to understand those implications in what they are posting.

What Happens If a Complaint Occurs?

PLU officials will never search for social media activity by students, staff, or faculty members. However, if notification comes to PLU regarding activity that could be construed as inappropriate, disrespectful, or offensive, action can be taken. Additionally, if potential violations of the Student Code of Conduct are brought to the attention of PLU administrators, action can be taken. If activity on social media can be construed as being a representative of PLU, additional responsibilities need to be understood. Examples of such conduct may include, but are not limited to:

  • Content that can be interpreted that could infringe on the rights of an individual’s identities, including race, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, club or organization affiliation, etc.
  • Content in violation of state or federal laws
  • Content that displays clear violations of the PLU student code of conduct

The Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities acknowledges that all individuals have a right to freedom of speech and expression as it relates to online activity. However, it is also the responsibility of all PLU community members to understand the impact words or actions can have on other people, and how that could infringe on the rights of individuals.

Residence hall room telephones are available for check out from the office of Residential Life. Any student who checks out a telephone will be responsible for its return in good condition.  Telephones at PLU are digital and work only when plugged into their assigned station.  They will not work in any other place, on or off the campus.  Only PLU telephones will work in the residence hall outlets with the exception of South Hall bedrooms where students may provide their own phone.

Students who misuse the telephone system or tamper with the equipment will be subject to disciplinary action.  Accepting collect calls on a campus phone is illegal.  Violators are subject to prosecution, administrative fees and loss of service.

Problematic phone calls of any type (obscene, harassing, threatening, etc.) will be handled directly through the Campus Safety Director’s Office.  The Campus Safety Director will determine the security issues involved and decide if a search of PLU’s call records is needed.  A request is then submitted directly to the PLU Telecommunications Office.  Any information obtained about the telephone incident is considered highly confidential and reported only to the Campus Safety Director for assessment.

Telephone and voice messaging systems fall under the FCC Telecommunications Act, which makes tampering with another person’s voice mail or making prank or obscene phone calls illegal.  The university vigorously prosecutes these violations both criminally and via the student conduct system.

Cell phones

Cell phones are to be turned off while attending classes.  Disruption of class time is considered disruption of university community and may be processed through the Student Conduct System.

Smoking is not allowed in the residence halls, in campus buildings, and on campus grounds. This includes tobacco, marijuana, hookah (except for approved cultural and religious celebrations), e-cigarettes, vaporizers, or any items that emit gas or smoke. Possession of cigarettes, e-cigarettes, vaporizers, and hookahs is permitted, as long as these items are not being used on campus or in campus buildings and for legal purposes only.

Parking on the PLU campus is by decal only. All members of this community must register their vehicles with the Campus Safety while parking on campus. An appropriate decal is issued upon registration. Because parking space is at a premium on campus, it is imperative that everyone parks in their assigned area(s). Parking tickets are written for failure to register and for parking in reserved or unauthorized areas. Registration decals are valid from September 1 through August 31 of the following year.

Registration decals are valid only for the person and vehicle(s) to which they are originally issued. Decals are to be placed on the inside of the front windshield on the lower left hand (driver) side. Motorcycles are required to be registered but are exempt from displaying a decal. Persons with state issued Handicapped Parking decals, plates or placards may use any available Handicapped Parking space.

The university administration has established regulations for the control of parking, traffic, and other matters on campus.

Parking lots are enforced from 7:00 am-5:00 PM, Monday through Friday, twelve months a year (whether classes are in session or not). Areas that are enforced 24 hours each day are: fire lanes, restricted areas, handicapped spaces, loading zones and reserved 24 hour spaces. Driving on inner campus is strictly regulated. Generally, student vehicles are not permitted on the inner campus except during official move-in and out days. The university reserves the right to change designated use of parking lots at any time to provide for special needs.

Campus Parking Designations

Neighborhood parking is available on many of the county streets surrounding the campus and is subject to Pierce County parking regulations.  Drivers are responsible for knowing these regulations.  A complete list of violations is in the Pierce County tickets section of the Vehicle Parking Regulations Guide.  If you park in the neighborhood surrounding PLU, please keep safety in mind and be considerate of those living in these neighborhoods.

Visitors may park in designated visitor parking spaces and in designated parking lots after obtaining a Temporary Parking Permit from the Campus Safety Office or the office being visited. Short-term parking is available in the East and West Hauge Lots. Visitors may park on the street without obtaining a permit.

Parking in an unauthorized place will result in a ticket being issued and subjects the vehicle to being towed at the owner’s expense.

The following areas are designated for parking as indicated:

South Hall Decal:

South Hall Gated Lot (additional fee)

Resident Decal:

Columbia Center

Harstad Lot

Ivy Lot

Morken Lot

Nesvig Lot

Olson Lot

Yakima Lot

Tingelstad Fenced Lot

Resident Freshman Decal:

Morken Lot

Olson Lot

Commuter Student Decal:

Harstad Lot

Ivy Lot

Morken Lot

Mortvedt Library Lot

Nesvig Lot

Olson Lot

Tinglestad Fenced Lot

Wheeler Lot

Faculty/Admin/Staff Decal:

East Hauge Lot

Health Center Lot

Ivy Lot

Morken Lot

Mortvedt Library Lot

Nesvig Lot

Northwest Lot

Olson Lot

Tingelstad Reserved Lot

University Center Lot

West Hauge Lot

Wheeler Lot

Operating a vehicle on the inner campus is strictly regulated.  All vehicles must adhere to a five mile per hour speed limit. Student vehicles are not usually permitted on the inner campus except during official move-in and out days.  For the purpose of driving on campus, these dates are defined as the three days following the opening of the residence halls in fall and three days prior to the closing of the residence halls in spring.  Students may also drive on campus the last day of classes preceding Christmas and Spring Break and the day preceding the start of classes at the end of Christmas and Spring Break.  Students needing to drive on campus at times other than those listed must receive pre-approval by contacting Campus Safety and Information.

Motorcycles, scooters, motorized bicycles, etc., are not allowed on campus sidewalks or lawns and may be stored only in approved areas.

Individuals found responsible for operating vehicles on campus are subject to parking fines in addition to sanctions issued through the Student Conduct System.

Bicycles, skateboards, etc., may be used for the purpose of transportation only and at the operator’s own risk. All other uses will be violations of this policy. They may be ridden on outdoor paved surfaces only; unpaved paths may not be used.  Only the road behind Hinderlie Hall may be used to ride a bicycle between upper and lower campus.  Bicyclists, skateboard riders, etc. are to stay on the right-hand side of the road/path and are to ride at speeds less than 5 miles per hour.  Pedestrians retain the right of way.  Wearing protective equipment, such as a helmet, is highly encouraged.  Pierce County law states that all bicyclists must wear a helmet.

Introduction and Purpose

The university, its employees and students, strive to provide a safe and secure learning, living and work environment in an atmosphere which respects each person’s dignity.  Toward this end, the university will take appropriate action against anyone who is found to have engaged in threatening or violent behavior on campus or at university-sponsored programs or events.  Employees and students are responsible for reporting situations that are, or could become, threatening.

Verbal threats, threatening behavior, or acts of violence by an employee, student or other member of the campus community against other employees, students, vendors, or campus visitors will not be tolerated.  Persons found to have violated this policy are subject to appropriate disciplinary action, including potential dismissal.  Arrest and criminal prosecution by off-campus authorities are also possible.

Threats or acts of violence will be taken seriously.  Reported threats and acts of violence are investigated by the university.  Employees, students or other members of the campus community who are found to have made substantial threats, exhibited threatening behavior, or engaged in violent acts on university property are subject to removal from the campus as quickly as safety permits.

For the purpose of this policy, employee includes all faculty, administrators, staff, temporary employees, and student workers; student includes any enrolled student.  The prohibitions in this policy apply to all members of the campus community, including employees, students, and volunteers.

Prohibited Behavior

While it is not possible to describe all the actions which might constitute threatening or violent behavior or a risk to safety and security, the following behaviors are strictly forbidden in the workplace or on the PLU campus:

  • Using threatening, intimidating, or abusive language and/or gestures.
  • Using or possessing firearms, explosives, knives, or any other type of weapon.
  • Stalking or similarly harassing behavior toward employees, students, or campus visitors.
  • Destroying or damaging university property, computer files, and/or other acts of workplace sabotage.
  • Assaulting or physically attacking another person.
  • Verbally threatening to harm another person or destroy property.
  • Possessing or consuming illegal drugs.
  • Possessing or consuming alcoholic beverages.
  • Working under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs.

Reporting Requirements

  1. Students and employees are required to notify Campus Safety immediately at 253-535-7911 if they observe the following:
    • A life-threatening situation that is in progress (physical confrontation, robbery, etc.)
    • An act of violence or threat in the workplace, residence halls or on campus property;
    • A threat of domestic violence potentially affecting the campus environment;
    • Any action or conduct that is imminently threatening or violent, or that has the potential to become threatening or violent;
    • The presence of any person on campus who is the subject of a Restricted From Campus Order, or a Restraining or Anti-Harassment Order that lists the university as a restricted location.
  2. Employees are required to notify their supervisors promptly of any action noted in items “a” through “e” above.  In turn, supervisors are required to notify Campus Safety of any threats of which they are informed and any threats they receive or witness themselves.
  3. Students and employees are required to notify Campus Safety promptly in the event that they have secured a Restraining or Anti-Harassment Order that lists the university as a restricted location.
  4. All students and employees are required to complete a University Violence Prevention Report after observing any behavior or circumstances noted in items “a” through “e” above.  Employees should complete the report with assistance from their supervisor, and students should complete it with assistance from a Student Life staff member (Resident Director, or Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities) or with their workplace supervisor.  The completed report must be filed with Campus Safety.
  5. Other members of the PLU community, including volunteers, are strongly encouraged to follow these same reporting procedures if they observe acts of violence or threatening situations.
  6. Campus Safety will notify Human Resources in a timely manner regarding reports and information shared with them.
  7. The university will use reported information with as much discretion as possible, balancing privacy with the need to provide a safe, secure environment.


Student Life staff members are available to consult with, assist and/or refer students with any issues related to the behaviors or procedures noted above.

Human Resources staff members are available to consult with, assist, and/or refer employees and supervisors regarding:

  • Talking through difficult situations and determining what next steps might be appropriate
  • Referring employees to the Employee Assistance Program or other services for support in counseling, anger management, or mediation.
  • Documenting and managing sensitive performance issues.

Supervisors are directed to seek the assistance of Human Resources and/or Campus Safety during potentially high-risk situations, such as employee dismissals, work restructuring, or instances in which an employee’s medical condition may be a contributing factor.

Human Resources and Student Life will coordinate and conduct periodic training sessions regarding measures to prevent violence, recognizing early warning signs of a troubled or potentially violent person, and procedures for responding to and reporting such incidents.


Office Phone / Contact Numbers Contact For
Campus Safety Emergency, dial 7911

Non-emergency, 253-535-7441

·         Emergency assistance

·         Filing University Violence Prevention Report Forms

Human Resources 253-535-7187 (Director)

253-535-7185 (Front Desk)

·         Consultation for employee situations

·         Assistance with completion of University Violence Prevention Report Forms

·         Referral to support services

SRR 253-535-7462 ·         Consultation for student concerns

·         Consultation for residence hall , campus and classroom situations

·         Assistance with completion of the University Violence Prevention Report Forms


Retaliation Prohibited

The university will not tolerate any retaliation against any person who reports or participates in the investigation of a situation under this policy.  Any person who is found to have engaged in retaliation prohibited by this policy is subject to appropriate disciplinary action, including immediate dismissal and exclusion from campus.

Not a Contract

No part of this policy is intended to, or shall be construed to, limit the university’s right to manage its workforce or address student conduct issues, operate the university or to handle specific situations based on the specific facts involved.  This policy is not, and shall not be, construed as a contractual commitment on behalf of or to any person.

If a student violates the Student Code of Conduct further while on conduct probation, the student may be subject to additional sanctions up to and including suspension or expulsion.

PLU is committed to maintaining safe, respectful and healthy residential environments that are conducive to living and learning. This commitment to residential students takes precedence over any one resident’s preference to host a visitor or guest. The university believes that overnight visitors and guests have the potential for being an infringement upon the community by compromising the privacy and convenience of the people sharing residence hall space. Therefore, PLU selectively restricts visitation and expects overnight guests be hosted on a limited and infrequent basis.

The university encourages roommates to discuss issues of privacy and personal space. It is recommended that roommates discuss courtesy guidelines for the use of their room during visitation hours proactively and early in the semester. If any assistance is needed, contact a residence hall staff member.

Visitation is unrestricted:

  • in residence hall lounges, hallways and kitchens at all times. Residents and guests are expected to act courteously and abide by campus policy at all times.
  • in resident rooms between the hours of 8:00am and 2:00am, Monday – Friday, and 8:00am – 3:00am, Saturday and Sunday.
  • in South Hall and Kreidler Hall at all times.

Visitation is restricted in:

  • resident rooms between the hours of 2:00am and 8:00am, Monday – Friday, and 3:00am – 8:00am, Saturday and Sunday. Guests must not stay longer than four consecutive nights, any four nights out of seven, or any eight nights out of thirty. Out of consideration for roommates and neighbors, overnight guests must not be in an intimate relationship with any resident of the hosting room.

Guests and residents are not permitted to sleep in university lounges and lobbies. If the guest or their host refuses to abide by university rules, regulations, notices or directions, as given by the staff members or other authorized notices issued by the university or its staff members, the visitor may be required to leave.

Residence halls and/or residential wing communities may amend these guidelines to be more restrictive by working with the Resident Assistant and/or Residence Hall Council and the Community Director of the hall.

The university reserves the right to remove a visitor or overnight guest from the residence hall or the campus at any time it deems that the guest’s or their host’s behavior is contrary to the goals and objectives of the university. (See also “Guests on Campus and at PLU Events“.)

Students who need assistance addressing an unwanted guest are encouraged to contact Campus Safety at 253-535-7441.


As stated in its Equal Opportunity policy, Pacific Lutheran University will not discriminate against any student because of the presence of a mental or physical disability. As part of its long-range plan, the University has committed the financial and human resources necessary to provide access to University facilities according to the recommendations and requirements of the ADA. Where a student with a disability is able to perform essential academic/program requirements or job functions, the University may be obligated to provide reasonable accommodation to the needs of that student, unless such accommodations would provide undue hardship to the University.

Students with medically recognized and documented disabilities and who are in need of special accommodation have an obligation to notify the University of their needs by contacting the Director of Disability Support Services in University Center 300. Students with disabilities who want to appeal a decision regarding accommodation should contact the Director of the Counseling Center per the guidelines outlined in the Policy, Procedures and Guidelines for Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability for Students Attending Pacific Lutheran University,


Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974

In accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, popularly known as the “Buckley Amendment” and carrying the acronym “FERPA,” PLU has adopted the following policies and procedures. This policy was designed to protect the privacy of education records, to establish the right of students to inspect and review their education records, and to provide guidelines for the correction of inaccurate or misleading data through informal and formal hearings. This is a notice of students’ basic rights under the law, and explains certain procedures for PLU’s full compliance with the law.


Pacific Lutheran University uses the following definitions in this policy:

Student: any person who attends or has attended PLU.

Education Records: any record maintained by the university that is directly related to a student, with the following exceptions:

  1. Personal records maintained by university employees which are in the sole possession of the maker and are not accessible or revealed to any other person except a temporary substitute;
  2. Employment records unless the employment records are contingent on the fact that the employee is a student;
  3. Records maintained by Campus Safety solely for law enforcement purposes;
  4. Medical treatment records – records created and maintained by the Health Center and Counseling Center (health records may be reviewed by a physician or psychologist of the student’s choosing). These are maintained under the provisions of the Washington Administrative Code;
  5. Pastoral counseling records maintained by the University Pastors; and
  6. Alumni records containing information about a student after he/she is no longer attending the university, and which do not relate to the person as a student.

Annual Notification to Parents of Students & Currently Enrolled Eligible Students

Parents of students and currently enrolled eligible students will be notified of their FERPA rights annually by publication of the PLU FERPA Policy in the Student Handbook. Notices of students’ right of review of the policy in the Office of Student Life may also appear in the Schedule of Classes and the university Catalog.

Types, Locations, and Custodians of Education Records

The following is a list of the types of education records that Pacific Lutheran University maintains, their locations, and their custodians.

Admission and Academic Records : Registrar

Hauge Administration 102

Records Coordinator

Financial Aid Records : Student  Financial Services

Hauge Administration 102

Records Coordinator

Disciplinary & Student Conduct Records : Student Rights and Responsibilities

Lee House

Dean of Students/Director for Student Rights and Responsibilities

Physical/Learning Disability Records : Disability Support Services

Lee House

Dean of Students/Coordinator for Disability Support Services

Progress and Advising Records : Faculty Office at each Academic Department/School, Academic Advising Office, and Career Development Office

Ramstad 112

Department Administrative Assistant/Advisor

Student Account Records : Student Financial Services

Hauge Administration 102

Records Coordinator

Procedure to Inspect Education Records

Students may inspect and review their education records upon request to the appropriate record custodian. Students should complete the Request to Review Records form, available in the Registrar’s Office, identifying as precisely as possible the records they wish to inspect. The custodian will arrange for access as promptly as possible and will notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected and/or copied. Access will be allowed no more than 45-days after receipt of the written request. When a record contains information about more than one student, the student may inspect and review only the records that relate to him or her.

Fees for Copies of Records

The fee for an official transcript of the student’s permanent academic record is $5 per copy. The fee for copies of other education records is $1 per page.

Right of the University to Refuse Access

Pacific Lutheran University reserves the right to refuse to permit a student to inspect the following records:

  1. The financial statement(s) of the student’s parents.
  2. Letters and statements of recommendation for which the student has waived his or her right of access, or which were placed in the file before January 1, 1975.
  3. Records connected with an application to attend Pacific Lutheran University if that application was denied.
  4. Education records containing information about more than one student, in which case the university will permit access only to that part of the record that pertains to the inquiring student. (May seek release from other student(s) to reveal record.)
  5. Those records which are excluded from the FERPA definition of education records.

Right of the University to Refuse to Provide Copies

Pacific Lutheran University reserves the right to deny official transcripts and/or copies of other educational records (not required to be made available under FERPA) if the student has an overdue financial obligation to the university, or if there is an unresolved disciplinary or academic dishonesty action against the student.

Disclosure of Education Records

Pacific Lutheran University will disclose to third parties information from a student’s education records only with the written consent of the student, except:

  1. To school officials who have a legitimate educational interest in the records. A school official is:
    • A person employed by the university in an administrative, supervisory, academic, research, support and staff position (including student safety officers and student workers);
    • A person elected to the Board of Regents;
    • A person employed by or under contract to the university to perform a special task, such as legal counsel or an auditor.
      • A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official is:
        • Performing a task that is specific in his or her job description or by a contract agreement; or
        • Performing a task related to a student’s education; or
        • Performing a task related to the discipline of a student; or
        • Providing a service or benefit relating to the student or student’s family, such as health care, counseling, job placement, financial aid, or writing letters of recommendation.
  2. To officials of another school, upon request, in which a student seeks or intends to enroll.
  3. To certain officials of the US Department of Education, the Comptroller General, and state and local educational authorities, in connection with certain state or federally supported education programs.
  4. In connection with a student’s request for or receipt of financial aid, as necessary to determine the eligibility, amount, or conditions of the financial aid, or to enforce the terms and conditions of the aid.
  5. If required by a state law requiring disclosure that was adopted before November 19, 1974.
  6. To organizations conducting certain studies for or on behalf of the university.
  7. To accrediting organizations to carry out their functions.
  8. To parents who claim the student as a dependent for income tax purposes.
  9. To comply with a judicial order or a lawfully issued subpoena.
  10. To appropriate parties in a health or safety emergency.
  11. To an alleged victim of any serious act of violence, disclosure will be limited to the decision of any institutional disciplinary proceeding against the alleged perpetrator.

Record of Requests for Disclosure

Pacific Lutheran University will maintain a record of all requests for and/or disclosure of information from a student’s education records. The record will indicate the name of the party making the request, any additional party to whom it may be re-disclosed, and the legitimate interest the party had in requesting or obtaining the information. The parent(s) and/ or eligible student may review the record.

Directory Information

Pacific Lutheran University has designated the following items as directory information (available to the public): student name, local and permanent addresses and telephone numbers, E-mail address, date and place of birth, participation in officially recognized activities and sports, photo, weight and height of members of athletic teams, dates of attendance, class standing, previous educational agency or institution(s) attended, major and minor fields of study, anticipated date of graduation (if that has not yet occurred), and degree(s) and award(s) conferred (including dates). The university may disclose any of those items without prior written consent unless notified in writing to the contrary to the Office of Student Life by the last day of registration for any given academic term at Pacific Lutheran University.

Correction of Education Records

A student who believes that information contained in her/his education records is inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of privacy rights may request in writing that the office, which contains those records, amend them. A student should identify the part of the record she/he wants changed and specify why it is believed to be inaccurate, misleading, or in violation of privacy rights.

That office will reach a decision and inform the student within a reasonable amount of time after receiving the request. If the records custodian refuses to amend the record, the student has the right to a hearing. A hearing officer appointed by the Provost, Vice President for Administrative Services, or Dean of Students will conduct this hearing. The hearing officer will be someone who does not have a direct interest in the outcome of the hearing, but may be an official of the university. The hearing will be held within a reasonable amount of time after it is requested. The hearing officer will notify the student, reasonably in advance, of the date, place, and time of the hearing.

The student will be afforded a full and fair opportunity to present evidence relevant to the issue raised. One or more other persons, including an attorney, may accompany the student. The hearing officer will make a decision in writing based on the evidence presented at the hearing. The decision will include a summary of the evidence presented and the reasons for the decision. If the hearing officer supports the complaint, the education record will be amended accordingly, and the student will be so informed. If the hearing officer decides not to amend the education record, a student has the right to place in the education records a statement commenting on the challenged information and/or stating the reasons for disagreeing with the decision. This statement will be maintained as part of the education record as long as the contested portion is maintained, and whenever a copy of the education record is sent to any party, the student’s statement will be included.

Pacific Lutheran University’s policy statement implementing FERPA is maintained by, and available for review in the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities, Nesvig Alumni Center/Garden Level. Students should address questions, concerns, or problems to the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities. Students may file complaints regarding alleged failure of the university to comply with FERPA with The Family Policy Compliance Office, US Department of Education, 600 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20202-4605; (202) 260-3887, FAX: (202) 260-9001.


Students who believe an instructor has unfairly or inaccurately evaluated their coursework may appeal a grade. Each school and division (Arts, Business, Education, Humanities, Natural Sciences, Nursing, Kinesiology, Social Sciences) has its own grade dispute procedure. Students should first attempt to resolve the dispute with their instructor, and, only if that effort fails, contact the office of the dean of the school or division in which the course was offered for information on how best to proceed.


Pacific Lutheran University is committed to the internal resolution of disputes arising within the university community. To that end, the President has appointed a University Dispute Resolution Committee (UDRC) that includes representatives from the faculty, student life, human resources and academic administration. The Committee appointments shall each be for a minimum two-year term.

The University Dispute Resolution Committee is charged with reducing conflicts and helping members of the community resolve disputes appropriately, expediently and fairly. The committee does so by educating the community about campus policies and dispute resolution options; coordinating dispute resolution services; investigating grievances when appropriate and advocating for review of university policies and procedures when necessary.

It is the intent that the University Dispute Resolution Committee be a resource for all members of the PLU community. The UDRC may assist any faculty, administrator, staff or student who needs consultation or referral to resolve an on-campus conflict, or who desires conflict resolution services. The UDRC also processes all formal grievances as allowed by the University’s Grievance Policy, except those that relate to faculty tenure or discipline or which otherwise arise under the faculty constitution and bylaws or which arise under the Student Conduct System. The UDRC shall have authority to establish separate policies and procedures for certain types of grievances. Subject to faculty approval, the UDRC shall also have authority to enact special policies and procedures for resolution of grade disputes and issues of academic dishonesty. The University Dispute Resolution Committee has the authority to appoint additional committee members on an as needed basis, for example, when one or more UDRC members would be unable to participate in a specific matter or when an additional member would assist in serving the mission of the University Dispute Resolution Committee.

The university encourages community members to resolve their disputes at the earliest and most informal level (i.e. by talking directly with the individual(s) involved; through facilitated conversation and/or through conflict mediation). When informal resolution is not possible, every member of the university community, whether faculty, student, administrator or staff, has the right to file a grievance and access the grievance procedures established by the UDRC. Grievances may be initiated by contacting any member of the Committee. Grievances first reported elsewhere in the community should be referred to the Committee for resolution, except for grievances that arise under the faculty constitution and by-laws or under the Student Conduct System.

If, at any time during a conflict resolution or grievance proceedings, a participant believes that a member of University Dispute Resolution Committee has a conflict or the appearance of a conflict, or that the dispute/grievance involves or potentially involves a member of the Committee, that member will be excused from any further involvement in the grievance proceedings. In such circumstances an additional UDRC member may be appointed by the remaining University Dispute Resolution Committee members.

The grievance policy and procedures will be published bi-annually and distributed to all members of the university community.


PLU takes photographs and video of students throughout the year. These images most often include students in spaces that are typically considered public community spaces at the university. These spaces include, but are not limited to, classrooms, labs, dining spaces, walkways and outdoor spaces, athletic events, and other university activities.

PLU reserves the right to use these photos and videos in the promotion of the university. Students who enroll at PLU do so with the understanding that photos and video of them taken in PLU public community spaces may be used in university publications, newspapers, web, social media, and other communication mediums that may be utilized for promotional purposes. Student public directory information may also be released when describing student involvement in academic and extracurricular activities.

Students wishing to opt out of use of their image for university purposes are asked to communicate that desire formally by filling out the opt out form at:  When a request for use of personally identifiable student images is made by an entity external to the university, students whose images will be used will be asked, whenever reasonably possible, to complete a formal release indicating agreement for use of their image. (Please see Policy and Privacy statement at


Pacific Lutheran University is committed to educating students for lives of thoughtful inquiry, service, leadership and care – for other persons, for the community, and for the earth. In accordance with this principle, any recognized university organization may invite speakers to campus that further PLU’s educational mission. Effort should be made to inform the academic and larger community that sponsorship of a guest speaker does not necessarily imply approval of the views expressed or endorsement of them by either the sponsoring group or the university.

Routine scheduling procedures required by the university must be followed before completing arrangements for any speaker. Availability of suitable space for the event that does not conflict with the university’s regularly scheduled program and the possibility of disruption of university business are factors to be considered in approving a proposed meeting. It shall be required that the audience be given an opportunity to question speakers at the conclusion of their presentations. This latter requirement may be waived only by Student Engagement by appeal to the university president.

For any event, either of these people may also require:

  • The appointment of an approved moderator for the event with the authority to close the meeting if, in their judgment, it becomes disorderly or disruptive.
  • The restriction of the audience to members of the campus community or to members of a specific organization.


Pacific Lutheran University is committed to sustaining a healthy, safe, and caring community. The use of tobacco is a health hazard and is the leading cause of preventable death in the United States. More than 1,000 Americans die every day from tobacco-related illnesses, and more than eight million Americans are living with diseases directly attributable to smoking. For these reasons, on June 1, 2012, PLU became a tobacco-free campus. PLU recognizes that tobacco cessation can be both a physical and psychological challenge, and we are committed to supporting students, faculty and staff through this transition. Our initiatives include tobacco cessation classes and one-one-one counseling for students, faculty and staff. Further, we will continue to educate our community about the hazards associated with tobacco use, provide resources, and encourage healthy behaviors. PLU seeks not only to graduate healthy students and employ healthy faculty and staff, but to serve as an example for the community around us. As we eliminate tobacco use from our campus, we hope that the trend will continue, and that other communities—in Washington state and beyond—will follow our lead toward a healthier tomorrow.

Substances and Delivery Tobacco includes any lit cigarettes, cigars, pipes and hookahs (except for approved cultural and religious celebrations); use of snus, snuff, chewing tobacco and e-cigarettes are also not permitted. (E-cigarettes are not FDA approved devices, and banned in public places in Pierce County: Link to the Pierce County Dept. of Health FAQ on e-cigarettes)

Courtesy and consideration will be exercised when informing others unaware of and/or in disregard of the policy. This policy is enforced as any other university policy is enforced. This includes community members talking with one another and with visitors. Retaliation against any person for requesting compliance with the policy or reporting an alleged violation is prohibited. While not preferred, if necessary, disciplinary actions for violations, appropriate to each constituency within the community, may be taken.

The successful implementation of this policy depends on the involvement, courtesy and cooperation of the entire campus community. Appropriate signage will be posted in campus facilities, on the PLU website and elsewhere to inform members of the campus community and visitors of the Tobacco-Free Campus Policy. PLU will provide access to tobacco cessation resources to both students and employees. The policy will be communicated in appropriate university publications and contracts. University publications include but are not limited to electronic notifications, handbooks, brochures and other university-generated materials. Small cards, as friendly reminders, will be printed with policy information as well as cessation resources. The policy is effective June 1, 2012 and applies to the entire campus, including personal offices and parking lots. Boundaries for campus may be found here.