2021-2022 Undergraduate Academic Catalog 
    Oct 07, 2022  
2021-2022 Undergraduate Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Student Life and Formation

The mission of the Office of Student Life and Formation is to faithfully call the Point Loma Nazarene University community to spiritual vitality centered on the Lordship of Jesus Christ. As an office, we believe in whole person development and are called to journey with each student, providing opportunities to learn, grow, and serve. It is the office’s goal and prayer to equip the PLNU community to love God, love others, and love the world with body, mind, and spirit.

Student Life and Formation at Point Loma Nazarene University is dedicated to engaging students in the active and energizing process of learning. The Office of Student Life and Formation coordinates a multitude of co-curricular programs in the area of Spiritual Life, Student Life, and Residential Life.

Corporate Worship


Chapel is offered four times a week. We have morning gatherings on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 9:45 a.m., as well as an evening gathering on Thursday at 9:00 p.m. On Wednesday, Chapel is offered at the Point Loma campus and the Liberty Station campus. Chapel gatherings are designed to encourage greater intimacy with God and one another while also inviting us to respond to God’s calling to minister and serve in our greater community. Chapels engage a diverse number of voices from outside the PLNU community as well as PLNU faculty, staff and students. Wednesdays are usually our Community Chapel days, when the Chapel preaching team will teach from Scripture in connection with the Chapel theme for the year. It is the university’s belief that Chapel has an important role in Christian liberal arts education and, as such, is required for all undergraduate students.

Spiritual Care

I Thessalonians 2:8 expresses the heart of the work in the Office of Student Life and Formation: “We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the Gospel of God but our lives as well, because you had become so dear to us.” Spiritual care offered in the context of loving relationships is at the center of the Office of Student Life and Formation.

Spiritual Direction and Pastoral Care

Encouraging a personal relationship with Jesus Christ is the university’s highest priority. The prayer for every student is that, in their time at Point Loma Nazarene University, God’s voice will be heard, God’s will discovered, and God’s mission embraced. The office staff is available to all members of the university community for prayer support, spiritual guidance, pastoral counseling, and pastoral care.

Worship Arts

Worship Arts creates opportunities for students to assist in leading people in praise, worship, and response to God’s voice. The team seeks to partner with and develop students who are pursuing integrity in their relationship with God and neighbor and who demonstrate ability in their area of art or technology.

Chapel Worship Leaders and Bands

In the spring semester, students interested in becoming Worship Leaders on campus for the following academic year are interviewed and auditioned. Those selected begin an internship in Student Life and Formation in the fall, providing leadership in various worship gatherings on campus, primarily in Chapel. In the fall, PLNU students interested in serving and growing within Worship Arts are invited to attend an informational meeting, followed by an audition and interview. From this process, a network of students is created from which the student Worship Leaders and the director of Worship Arts can draw, as they lead throughout the year. In addition, one band is created from students new to PLNU. This band works closely with the director of Worship Arts, rehearsing on a weekly basis and joining the worship leading rotation.

Summer Ministry Teams

In the spring, one or two paid teams of 7-9 students are selected and trained to travel during the summer throughout the Southwest Educational Region of the Church of the Nazarene, ministering at churches, youth and family camps, conventions, and retreats. Their primary ministry vehicle is music, but it is a highly relational ministry. These students are selected through an interview and audition process.


Students interested in writing songs, primarily for use in corporate worship, are invited to gather on a bi-monthly basis to provide encouragement and constructive criticism to one another. Staff partner with various professors to help provide further feedback in a song’s theology and music. From this program the office hopes to develop ability and confidence in song-writers as they hone their skills, writing songs that are both theologically sound and musically accessible for corporate worship.

Discipleship Ministries

Discipleship Ministries create opportunities to seek and discover ways of living that reflect the life of Christ. When people engage in faithful ways of learning in order to live out what it means to love God, neighbor, and self, practices become a sacred obligation that express joy, hope, and discernment. Programs in Discipleship Ministries invite the student to engage in rhythms that include faithful reflection, spiritual nourishment and friendship, study of the Word, discussions on relevant issues in the culture and world, and the worship of God expressed in creative ways.

Alpha Groups

Alpha Groups provide an intentional, embedded, and directed small group experience in every on-campus freshman dorm for the fall semester. Each hall is connected with two leaders who meet weekly to go through a unified curriculum that aims to grow student knowledge of their faith, community, and self.

Discipleship Groups

By participating in a D group, students enter into a weekly rhythm of creating a time for rest, encouragement, learning, and spiritual friendship. D groups encourage participating in ways that make an impact on the world in which students live.

Spiritual Mentoring

Students are invited to participate in intentional one-on-one relationships with someone slightly further along in their faith. Senior students volunteer to mentor their sophomore peers while staff, faculty, and friends of the university volunteer to mentor juniors and seniors. These relationships provide mutual growth for both participants.

Created Space

Created space offers several workshops each semester to a limited group of students who engage in prayer and worship through various forms of creative expression: art journaling, drawing, painting, sculpturing, etc. Each semester, a large prayer and worship event provides space for the student body to outwardly express spiritual growth and formation through creativity.


Student Life and Formation also partners with other departments to offer spiritual formation retreats, men’s retreat, and a women’s retreat for the PLNU community. These weekend retreats offer opportunities for students, faculty, and staff to come together and build relationships with one another outside the normal university setting. Retreats focus on Christian formation through fellowship, worship, discussion, and sharing about personal life journeys.

Student Ministries

Student Ministries provides opportunities to serve with and alongside our neighbors throughout the greater San Diego area. Student groups connect weekly with established nonprofit organizations serving many diverse populations including: homeless individuals and families; adults and children with special needs; seniors living in assisted care facilities; kids and teens in tutoring programs; and many others. Every PLNU student can find a place to serve. No special skills or abilities are required, just a desire to give, receive, and be blessed by the rich relationships formed in Christian ministry. Seasoned student leaders oversee each ministry and transportation is provided to ongoing ministry opportunities as well as special events.

International Ministries

International Ministries offers opportunities to those who want to partner with, fellowship with, and learn from Christian brothers and sisters around the world. International Ministries participants are privileged to come alongside church leaders, missionaries, and international development professionals and support on-going ministry in a variety of places around the world. While each location, culture, and ministry is unique, all programs genuinely value devoted Christian service with an attitude of humility, hospitality, and intercultural understanding.

LoveWorks Short-Term Missions

The LoveWorks short-term mission program is a resource to church leaders, missionaries, pastors, and congregations serving Christ in various places around the world. Through the LoveWorks program, over 3,000 students, faculty, staff, and alumni have served and built relationships in Christ’s name. LoveWorks has a reputation for sending well-trained, respectful, and energetic teams who have been a blessing to the church on every continent. Participant preparation, safety, and well-being are taken into account at all times. All team members are required to participate in weekly training sessions conducted by the Office of International Ministries.

Ministry with México

Ministry with México offers the opportunity to serve in Northwest Baja (Tijuana, Tecate, and Rosarito) with student-led groups that partner with the Church of the Nazarene, orphanages, and government agencies. We offer three Saturday trips a month and all trips are accompanied by a faculty/staff/alumni sponsor.

Border Pilgrimage

The Border Pilgrimage is a partnership between International Ministries and the Center for Justice and Reconciliation. One weekend each semester, we explore the border and learn about the complexities of this fascinating region. The experience includes expert presentations, travel to and across the border, and worshiping with a sister church in Tijuana.

Spring Break Build

Over spring break 50 staff, faculty, alumni, and students work together to build a new sanctuary building with one of the Nazarene churches on the Northwest Baja district. Lazarian World Homes is an organization that has developed a sustainable building model using foam blocks. We use their technique and partner with their staff to accomplish this huge task. The evenings are spent in fellowship, worship services, and preparation for the next day’s work.

Residential Life

Approximately two-thirds of undergraduates live in university provided residence halls. The primary goal of The Office of Residential Life is to foster an environment in which vital Christianity is encouraged, experienced, and modeled. Residential life is an integral part of the co-curricular experience and encourages the academic, spiritual, and social growth of students. In addition, residential living provides students with an opportunity to meet students from a diverse variety of backgrounds.

Application for admission to the university and application for on-campus housing are two separate steps. Students may refer to admission procedures for further information regarding housing. Residential housing options include eight traditional residence halls and two apartment buildings. The university does not guarantee housing for all four years.

Off-Campus Housing

All single undergraduate students under the age of twenty-three (23) years of age are required to live in university housing. Exceptions to this policy are married students, students living with parents, or students residing in a live-in work situation. Seniors can choose to live on or off campus, and do so during the spring housing selection. The choice to live on campus is for the full academic year. Occasionally, due to high housing demand, some junior students are permitted to live off campus. Campus housing is guaranteed to freshmen, sophomores, and juniors. PLNU cannot guarantee housing for senior students but works to facilitate as many students who desire to live on-campus as possible.

Students requesting to live off campus must indicate their desire to do so on the housing application within established deadlines, through the Office of Residential Life. Each petition is carefully verified.

Any change of residence or phone number must be changed on the student portal immediately.

Residential Housing

Application for Housing. Students planning to live in a residence hall must file a Residence Hall Application and Contract as well as a housing deposit. For returning students, once registration for the fall semester is completed (which constitutes a reservation for the fall semester), the housing deposit is non-refundable. For new students, the deposit is refunded consistent with the dates published in admission materials. Refunds of board charges are made for any student who moves out of the residence hall during the course of a semester according to the schedule printed in the Catalog. Residence halls are officially closed during Christmas Recess and Spring Break. The right of occupancy does not include these periods.

Residential Housing Assignments. Residential housing assignments for new students are made after the housing staff considers such factors as classification and date of a paid housing contract. An attempt is made to make roommate assignments that are compatible and beneficial to all concerned. Specific roommate requests must be mutual and accompany the paid housing contract. New and transferring students receive their residence hall assignments as they become available through the on-line student portal. The university does not consider roommate change requests based upon actual or perceived race, ethnicity, national origin, age, disability, or perceptions based on personal profiles and/or information found on the Internet.

Furnishings. Residence hall rooms are furnished with window coverings, and each student is provided with an extra-long single bed, dresser, study table and chair. Students must provide their own bed linens and towels. While most cooking appliances are prohibited, a compact refrigerator (maximum 4.4 cu. ft.) and a small microwave (maximum of 800 watts) are allowed.

Student Lifestyle

A major purpose of the university is to assist students in their preparation for daily living. The totality of the university environment is intended to be a learning experience. Some of the most significant learning occurs in the context of everyday experiences.

Students are expected to exercise self-discipline and sound judgment and to manage their conduct both on and off the main campus in a manner consistent with agreements made upon application and with the university Catalog and the Student Handbook. In addition, an accepted application for admission and subsequent registration is considered an agreement that the student acknowledges and will abide by all expectations laid out in the Student Handbook.

Student Care and Engagement

The offices within Student Care and Engagement strive to provide place, voice, and connection for each PLNU student. A PLACE…to belong, to grow; a place safe enough to take risks, try new ways of doing and being; a VOICE…to question and explore, to declare oneself; a voice for the present and the future; a CONNECTION…of faith, of reason, of friendship, of community. These opportunities exist through the numerous resources and co-curricular programs provided within Student Care and Engagement, including the following offices and services: Community Life (student leadership, student government, student organizations, student activities, student media), Commuter Student Services, Multicultural and International Student Services, Nicholson Commons (student center, student activities), Alpha Groups, and Transfer Student Services.

Community Life

The Office of Community Life seeks to assist students in their personal growth and in leadership development. Experiential leadership opportunities are designed as a developmental offering and range from leadership in a club, serving on the Board of Directors, and planning student activities. Student activity programs offered through Student Government provide quality and affordable activities throughout the academic year.

Student Government (ASB)

The Associated Student Body of Point Loma Nazarene University (ASB) is a constitutional organization of the entire student body created for the purpose of (a) providing meaningful, student-sponsored educational, social, cultural, religious, and service opportunities for member students; (b) fostering constructive communication and interaction between the members and the administration and faculty; (c) fostering good relations between ASB members and the university’s surrounding community; (d) establishing rapport with other student associations with similar objectives; and (e) providing opportunities for members to develop leadership qualities. The affairs of the ASB are managed by a student board of directors elected and appointed by the student body. The Director of Community Life serves as advisor to the student government program.

Student Organizations

Students may join or affiliate with many student led organizations that are chartered or recognized by PLNU. A student may contact the ASB Director of Student Relations, 619-849-2406, for more information.

Phi Delta Lambda is the national honor society for all educational institutions of the Church of the Nazarene, for undergraduate students who are academically ranked in the upper-fifteen percent of the graduating class; these students are recognized during the undergraduate commencement ceremonies.

Student Media

Student Newspaper. The official publication of the student body is The Point. The editor is appointed by the Media Board, subject to certain scholastic and residence requirements. The staff, recommended by the editor and approved by the Media Board, affords interested students an opportunity for practical training in journalism. The subscription price for the paper is included in the general fee.

Other Publications. The Student Handbook is published electronically each year; it clarifies community standards that guide the conduct of students and contains PLNU’s student conduct processes. It is available in the drop-down menu at catalog.pointloma.edu. The Driftwood is the annual student literary magazine published by the Department of Literature, Journalism, and Modern Languages. Students from all majors, faculty, and staff are encouraged to submit features, photographs, designs, and business ideas. Students from all majors may join the staff.

Radio Station. KPLR, the university radio station, provides professional training for students developing a career in broadcasting. The station serves the main campus and Internet listeners with a contemporary Christian format.

Television Station. PointTV, the university’s cable broadcast medium, allows students to write and produce original programming that is aimed at educating and entertaining the on-campus community. PointTV strives to follow current industry standards in all areas of station operation. Staff positions are filled annually, and students from all majors are encouraged to participate.

Commuter Student Services

Commuter Student Services is committed to providing services and programs for students who do not live in university residential housing. The current programmed activities are designed to stimulate social interaction among commuters while providing ample space for students to relax and gather while on campus. Many of our commuters are veterans or military and a unique space has been designed and dedicated for these students to have a place of their own on campus. The Commuter and Veterans Commons (CVC) is located on the first floor of Nicholson Commons adjacent to the bookstore and is a central location for Commuter Student Services. We are here to serve as a primary point of contact for commuters and as an on-campus advocate for their unique needs. For more information about the kinds of events and services offered, students may visit www.pointloma.edu/commuter.

Multicultural and International Student Services

The Office of Multicultural & International Student Services is committed to value all as individuals-first! Much of what the office does is created in the spirit of building a community among all multicultural, multi-ethnic, bi-racial students, multi-racial students, and international students, and to secure academic and social group success. This office seeks to build cross-cultural understanding, appreciation, and unity in the university community, accomplished by supporting students of multi-ethnic backgrounds as individuals and as part of student organizations.

Multicultural Student Services

The department provides multicultural activity programming, supervises ethnic/culturally diverse student leadership groups, and helps coordinate interaction among alumni, current students, and prospective students of color. Connections are built primarily under the banner of MOSAIC (Multicultural Opportunities for Students Actively Involved in Community). This includes the Asian Student Union (ASU), Association of Latin American Students (ALAS), Black Student Union (BSU), B.R.E.A.K. (Beauty, Revival, Equity, Action, and Knowledge), Delta Alpha Phi (DAPi), Hui O’ Hawai’i, Middle Eastern Student Union (MESU), U.N.I.T.E. (Uniting National and International students Through Education), and the Team Barnabas Mentoring Program. These clubs and services are also supported by the student led MOSAIC Activities Council. http://www.pointloma.edu/Multicultural

International Student Services

International Student Services provides and organizes professional services for international students in the areas of admissions counseling, advising, encouragement, transition, and assistance in complying with U.S. government regulations. The department serves as the university liaison to United States Citizenship Immigration Services (USCIS), Department of Homeland Security, assisting with visa procurement and I-20 documentation, and advises F-1 visa students effectively, assuring institutional adherence to those immigration regulations and procedures-interpreting U.S. immigration policy to the university community. http://www.pointloma.edu/InternationalStudents.htm

Nicholson Commons

Nicholson Commons provides activities and programs that enrich the university community academically, socially, physically, emotionally and spiritually. This social center for the university supports faculty, staff, and students in their desire to stimulate learning through positive, informal, collegial contact. The facility houses study areas, lounges, the ARC (Activity and Recreation Center), Common Knowledge Bookstore, Re-store Market, dining rooms, conference rooms, MOSAIC/Commuter Lounge, Commuter Student Services, Point Break Cafe, Bobby B’s Coffee Co., Outdoor Leadership Programs and offices for ASB, Nicholson Commons staff, clubs, organizations, the office of Student Life and Formation, and the Wellness Center. www.pointloma.edu/nicholsoncommons.

Meals are served regularly in the Dining Room of Nicholson Commons and conform to regulations of the City and County of San Diego and the State of California. Residential students are required to subscribe to a meal plan. Other students, faculty, staff, and guests may purchase meals on an individual basis. A snack bar, Point Break Cafe, is available for short orders.

Outdoor Recreation

If students are looking for a weekend adventure, Loma Outside outfits multiple student-led trips across the Southwestern States throughout the year. For those who are looking to adventure out on their own, Loma Rentals provides access to an expansive supply of rental gear. Whether a student is looking to surf the jetty or summit Mt. Whitney, we’ve got them covered. For more information and to see what gear we have available for rent and purchase, visit: https://lomaoutside.com.

Alpha Groups

Alpha Groups exist to help first year students acclimate to life at Point Loma by providing a weekly group experience on every residential freshmen hall. Upperclassmen co-leaders guide freshmen in engaging conversation as they get to know self, others, and the PLNU community. Alpha Groups occur each Monday night all across campus and cover topics pertinent to the first year experience. Alpha Groups are fun, consistent, and 100% freshmen focused!

Transfer Student Services

Transfer Student Services serves as a central point of information for resources, services, and opportunities designed specifically for transfer students. The office provides students with assistance, support and connections to campus resources to facilitate a smooth transition to the PLNU community. Transfer Student Services is located within the Commuter Student Services office on the first floor of Nicholson Commons. For more information, students may visit www.pointloma.edu/transferstudentservices.

Wellness Center

The Wellness Center, located in Nicholson Commons on the first floor, is home to the student health clinic and health outreach. The Wellness Center is staffed with a physician, registered nurse, and registered dietitian. Working as a team, the wellness staff provides a seamless continuum of programs and services for assisting students toward academic achievement and holistic growth.

The Wellness Center provides free, confidential, limited primary medical care and nutritional consultation for main campus undergraduate students. https://www.pointloma.edu/offices/wellness-center/medical-services. Our health and medical services include: free self-care, over-the-counter medications assessment and treatment of injuries and illnesses, TB testing, immunizations, travel and prescription medications, consultation on health and nutrition issues, physicals, and assistance with student health insurance processes and insurance-based referrals to local healthcare providers. There are charges for medications, injections, strep and other tests, labs, and physicals. Fees for labs or other tests are billed to the student’s account and the student receives a copy of the charges at the time of visit.

The Wellness Center is located in Nicholson Commons, 1st floor. https://www.pointloma.edu/offices/wellness-center. Hours of operation are Monday-Friday, 8 am to 4:00 pm; Call the Wellness Center (619-849-2574) to schedule an appointment.

Emergency Services

Professional staff is on-call for emergencies after hours and can be accessed through the Department of Public Safety. In case of any emergency, PLNU Public Safety are to be notified at extension 2525 (on campus) or 619-849-2525 (if utilizing a cell or off-campus phone).

PLNU Public Safety personnel will coordinate with emergency personnel and assist as needed. All Community Service Officers and Public Safety Staff Officers are trained in First-Aid, CPR and AED and can render first response until emergency services arrive. No one should attempt to move an injured person until Public Safety personnel arrive.

For additional information on emergency situations, students may visit the website at Public Safety Information.

Health Insurance

PLNU is committed to maintaining an environment where students are safe and healthy. For the safety of the community and the well-being of our students, it is vital that individuals living on campus have access to quality health care in the event of illness or accident.

Considering this commitment to a healthy community, main campus undergraduate students must have valid comprehensive health insurance coverage. For each year of enrollment, students must have proof of active health insurance on the student portal, even if they are studying abroad and regardless of the number of units enrolled.

The University highly recommends that students validate their health insurance on the portal prior to New Student Orientation and the start of classes. If you are a new or readmitted student, you can send a copy of the front and back of your insurance card in PDF form to sdwellnesscenter@pointloma.edu.

International Student Health Insurance

To assist with health insurance coverage that satisfies the requirements of the Affordable Care Act for all international students, the University provides a competitive, affordable international student health insurance plan. International students (undergraduate, graduates, and student-athletes) are automatically enrolled into the program for each semester of study at PLNU.

Mandatory Student Accident (MSA) Plan

Point Loma Nazarene University is pleased to provide a Mandatory Student Accident plan (MSA). MSA insurance is supplemental coverage for medical expenses incurred for accidental injury for all main campus undergraduate students and graduate student-athletes. The plan provides annual coverage whether or not college is in session, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The mandatory annual cost of the plan is included in the tuition billing statement. The MSA does not provide coverage for general health, preventative services, or sickness-related costs. To download a plan brochure, benefit snapshot, claims form and more, visit https://4studenthealth.relationinsurance.com/plan/mandatory-student-accident-plan-2018-2019-866/.