Pacific Lutheran University & the Center for Vocation encourage students to participate in the inaugural Wild Hope Essay Contest

Vocation: What Does it Mean to You?

Vocational exploration has been at the root of PLU’s mission since its founding in 1890. The Wild Hope Center for Vocation carries on the work of PLU’s Wild Hope Project, which began with a generous grant from the Lilly Endowment in 2003. Then, in May of 2011, the Board of Regents recognized the good that the project brought to the university and ensured its continuance by establishing what is now the Wild Hope Center for Vocation. The Wild Hope Center honors PLU’s commitment to Lutheran Higher Education by supporting students as they seek meaning and purpose — in their learning, in their work, and in their lives.

PLU invites currently registered students to write an essay on the topic of vocation. Faculty and staff who are members of the Center for Vocation Steering Committee will judge the essays. The first-place essay writer will be awarded a $500 prize; the second-place award will be $250.

Essays should discuss vocation in light of PLU’s mission including purpose, reflection, community, and service. More on the way the Center engages with and defines vocation may be found here:
Topics may also be discussed and negotiated between contestants and the Center Director or Associate Director prior to submission.

Essays must demonstrate that students have read and interacted with three specific articles related to vocation. A fourth is provided as optional context. These are available from the front desk in the Student Life Suite located on the lower level of the AUC or here: Essay Contest Articles.

Please submit your essay, formatted as a Word document and sent electronically, to Laree Winer, Associate Director for the Center for Vocation, no later than April 2, 2018, 4:00 p.m. Email submission is

Submissions must include a cover sheet and the completed essay. The cover sheet is to include your name, your PLU I.D. #, a current mailing address, email address and telephone number. Format must follow these guidelines: the essay should be at least 3-5 pages in length, the pages should be numbered, double-spaced with 1” margins and a font size of 12 pt. The essay should include either footnotes or endnotes and those citations must be in either the Chicago Manual of Style or the MLA format.

All contestants will be honored and the winners announced at an awards ceremony as part of Calling All Lutes: A Celebration of Vocation held on Monday, April 9th, 2018, at 3:30 p.m. in the Regency Room, Anderson University Center.

For additional information or questions, contact Professor Sergia Hay: (253)-535- 7736 Laree Winer or 253-535- 7192