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February 2015 E-Newsletter

In this issue:

Alumni Award Nominations

Athletics Update

PLNU Alumni Gear

Forensics - Speech & Debate

Tuition Freedom Day

Alumni & Friends Area Events

The Arts

Alumni Award Nominations

It's That Time of Year Again!


Do you know a PLNU graduate who is making a significant difference in the lives of others?   Someone with an active Christian testimony who has excelled professionally, academically and/ or in service to a non-profit organization? 

Now is the time to nominate this person for a PLNU alumni award. Anyone may nominate a PLNU graduate. 

Two types of alumni awards are presented each year during Homecoming: the Alumnus of Point Loma Award (four awards presented) and the Distinguished Achievement Award (two awards presented). Criteria for the two awards are the same, but the latter is considered a lifetime achievement award. 

To read the criteria and nominate a PLNU graduate, visit The deadline for nominations is May 20, 2015.

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Athletics Update

The Point Loma Sea Lions are enjoying a fantastic year across the board with all its sports in its first year as an active NCAA member.


Women's Basketball - The Sea Lions shocked the college basketball world by upsetting the No. 1 team in the country in the opening round of the NCAA Championships. PLNU earned the No. 8 seed in the NCAA West Regional and traveled to the No. 1 team in the country, Alaska Anchorage. The Sea Lions showed no fear against the top ranked Seawolves as they opened the game with 31-12 to quickly take the crowd out of the game. However, UAA made a run in the second half and took a 63-62 lead with a 3-point basket with 9.1 seconds left.

Coach Bill Westphal then called a timeout and told freshman Roya Rustamzada she would be getting the ball for the final shot. Rustamzada got the ball on the far side of the court, dribbled through the press and went to the basket from left to right. She faked a spin move and went to her right hand for a layup that floated over two defenders and into the hoop to put Point Loma in front 64-63 with just 2.1 seconds left. UAA's final half court heave was not successful and the Sea Lions shocked the No. 1 team in the country.

Baseball - The Point Loma baseball team set the school-record this spring by winning 17 straight games. That winning streak shattered the previous school-record of 11 and has helped the Sea Lions climb into second place in the PacWest Conference with a 16-4 record. The top of the Sea Lions' lineup and a strong starting staff have fueled the team's run. Ryan Garcia, who has twice been named the PacWest Player of the Week, is hitting .325 this season and is tied for the PacWest lead with 17 doubles and ranks seventh with 29 RBI. Pitcher Eric Pierce leads the PacWest with seven wins, and Coleman Huntley III has already matched the Sea Lions' record with 11 saves. The baseball team is attempting to become the third Sea Lion squad to qualify for the NCAA Regionals. There will be six teams selected for the regionals, including the winner of the PacWest regular season championship.

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PLNU Alumni Gear


Great News – Now you can buy trendy Alumni gear to represent your Alma Mater, and when you do , support current students. 

Any time you make a purchase through the bookstore, store or online, and the product has the word “Alumni” on it, the bookstore gives a percentage to our Alumni Student Scholarship Fund. 

This is a win win for everyone! Visit the link below or come by campus to make your purchase.

Thank you for supporting the current students of PLNU!

Click Here to visit the online store.

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Forensics - Speech & Debate

The PLNU Forensics Speech & Debate Team had a tremendous spring season. 

The National Parliamentary Debate Association (NPDA) has several hundred college and universities competing each year, and offers the most difficult level of intercollegiate parliamentary debate in the country.  The most successful of those programs compete each year at the NPDA National Championship Tournament, which was held in Kansas City.  Point Loma's four teams competing there won the 12th place Tournament Sweepstakes award after two of our teams advanced to the elimination bracket.  

Also exciting is that for the NPDA Yearlong Sweepstakes race, the PLNU debate team earned the Fourth Place Sweepstakes award in the nation, counting the top four tournaments of the season, and including novices, juniors and seniors, against the best four tournaments for every other college competing in the NPDA throughout the year.

Debate_Team_2014.15.jpgThese results mean that PLNU is still comfortably ranked in the number one spot in the country when comparing all other competing colleges and universities as ranked over the last 20 years or so, since NPDA started collecting this data.  The second place school on that list has about a third fewer points, and is no longer competing in this activity.

Quickly following the trip to Kansas City: 

The Point Loma Speech and Debate team competed in the NCCFA (National Christian College Forensics Association) National Championship at Colorado Christian College with four of our teams (8 students).  Eight of our more senior debaters were competing in Missouri at two different National Championships for debate recently and were not with us on this trip.  Yet these 8 students competing at Colorado Christian University still managed to win Second Place in the large school division Debate Sweepstakes award, out of three different divisions for debate.  

And freshman Jack Gillette won First Place in the Senior Division of NFA Lincoln Douglas debate, debating on the development of the moon.  So congratulations Jack on being named the National Champion in this event.

We are also happy to announce that our bid to host this Christian College National Championship at PLNU next year has been accepted by the NCCFA.  We will host the national championship at the beginning of Spring Break 2016, Saturday March 5th through Monday March 7th.  Spectators and community or alumni judges will be welcome. 

Please join us in congratulating the Forensics Teams and Director, Dr. Skip Rutledge!

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Tuition Freedom Day

Wednesday, March 25, marked Tuition Freedom Day on PLNU's campus!

unnamed.jpgDid you know that at PLNU tuition covers approximately 76% of a student's education costs?  In fact, never in the history of our university has tuition covered the entire cost of a student's education.

We celebrate this year on March 25th that 76% of the school year is complete, and that the remaining 24% is being covered by gifts from alumni and other donors, churches, foundations,  corporations, and other revenue sources.  The Alumni Association led this event, with significant support from Student Senate, the ASB Board of Directors, Sodexo and Bartell Hotels to host the 7th annual "Tuition Freedom Day."  This celebration aims at increasing awareness of the generous gifts offered to PLNU students, and provides an opportunity for students to express their gratitude.

Students came by the ARC after chapel to write a thank you note to our donors and received this year’s TFD t-shirt, designed by Hannah Siu. They also enjoyed complimentary refreshments provided by Sodexo.  Visit our Flickr to see pictures from Tuition Freedom Day 2014 and watch our 2015 video below!

One of the 456 Thank You messages written on Tuition Freedom Day.

"Thank you so much for your contribution to my education.  I wouldn't be able to be here without you.  Because of you, I'm graduating in May with my BS in dietetics!  Thanks again!"


 - Emily Strannigan ('15)


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Alumni & Friends Area Events

area.jpgThe PLNU Alumni Association hosts events in various cities across the United States each year. We appreciate the times you visit the PLNU main campus in San Diego, but now we're coming to you!

Visit our website for more information on an area event near you!

2015 Alumni & Friends Area Events: 

Washington DC - May 18 Mount Vernon Inn Dinner with President & Mrs. Brower

Honolulu, HI - June 20 Family Friendly Event w/Miniature Golf, Zip Line, Lunch, Bounce House and a time with fellow alums. 

San Diego, CA - June 27 Cinema Under the Stars- “Mary Poppins,” music, door prizes and “exceptional movie snacksa” 

Sacramento, CA – August 15 River Cats v Round Rock Express Baseball Game


In April the Alumni Association hosted a fabulous event in Walnut Creek, CA, enjoying a fine performance of “The Music Man” and a catered pizza lunch.

To volunteer to help with an event, contact

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The Arts


Spring is upon us and it brings a new season of concerts and performances. The PLNU Music Department is host to a variety of events this Spring ranging from Senior Recitals to Cultural Events. 

Coming up are several Senior Recitals as well as the Spring Music Festival, and end of the year celebration to honor graduating seniors with PLNU Music Department’s major performing ensembles. 

For more information on the PLNU Music Department click here

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