27th Annual Writer's Symposium by the Sea

Writer's Symposium


The 27th Annual Writer's Symposium by the Sea is Feb. 22-25, 2022, featuring Cornel West, Nadia Bolz-Weber, and David Brooks.

Join us for evening interviews with writers, afternoon workshops, and a filmmaker event. Events are currently scheduled as in-person events on the PLNU Main Campus.


Nadia Bolz-Weber

NADIA BOLZ-WEBER (Feb. 22, 2022)

Nadia Bolz-Weber is an ordained Lutheran Pastor, founder of House for All Sinners & Saints in Denver, Colorado, and the author of three NYT bestselling memoirs: Pastrix: The Cranky, Beautiful Faith Of A Sinner & Saint (2013), Accidental Saints: Finding God In All The Wrong People (2015), and SHAMELESS: A Sexual Reformation (2019).

In 2017, Bolz-Weber won the coveted Audience Award at the Nantucket Project. She has been featured in The New YorkerThe Washington PostNPR’s Morning EditionFresh Air, More, and on CNN and the BBC World Service.

Her latest project is a podcast, The Confessional with Nadia Bolz-Weber, a partnership with PRX and The Moth.

Click here for tickets to Nadia Bolz-Weber

David Brooks

DAVID BROOKS (Feb. 23, 2022)

David Brooks is an op-ed columnist for the New York Times. He is a commentator on The PBS NewshourNPR's "All Things Considered," and NBC's Meet the Press.

His books include Bobos in ParadiseThe Social Animal, and The Road to Character (a #1 NYT bestseller). His latest book is The Second Mountain: The Quest for a Moral Life (also a #1 NYT bestseller).

He has written for The Wall Street JournalThe Weekly Standard, and is a contributing editor for The Atlantic and Newsweek.

Click here for tickets to David Brooks

Cornel West

DR. CORNEL WEST (Feb. 25, 2022)

Dr. Cornel West is a prominent and provocative intellectual. He is Dietrich Bonhoeffer Chair at Union Theological Seminary and has written 20 books and edited 13. He's best known for his classics, Race Matters and Democracy Matters, and for his memoir, Brother West: Living and Loving Out Loud. His most recent book, Black Prophetic Fire, offers an unflinching look at nineteenth- and twentieth-century African American leaders and their visionary legacies.

Dr. West was previously Professor of the Practice of Public Philosophy at Harvard University and holds the title of Professor Emeritus at Princeton University. He has also taught at Union Theological Seminary, Yale, Harvard, and the University of Paris. Dr. Cornel West graduated Magna Cum Laude from Harvard in three years and obtained his M.A. and Ph.D. in Philosophy at Princeton.

Click here for tickets to Cornel West


The 2nd Annual Driftwood Film Festival will take place as part of the 2022 events. PLNU students will submit original short films to be reviewed and selected for screening at this event.

Event hosted in partnership with Driftwood, Department of Communication Studies, and Department of Literature, Journalism, Writing, and Languages.


2022 Writer's Symposium Donors

Thanks to our donors who believe in this event and support it with their financial contributions.

PLNU Department of Literature, Journalism, Writing, & Languages
PLNU Honor’s Program
PLNU Center for Justice & Reconciliation
PLNU Office of Diversity & Black Student Union
Mery Olive Bangs Endowment
Ron & Kathleen Lauderbach
Daniel K. O'Neill
John & Lori Dedic
The Rasak Family
Drs. Kathryn & Michael McConnell
Dr. David & Elizabeth Ostrander
David & Elinore Vandegrift
Phyllis Skidgel

Donations are tax-deductible.

COVID-19 Guidelines

At PLNU, we continue to be vigilant and prioritize the health and safety of our community. In response to new event guidelines for the state of California, all guests will be required to provide proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test for Writer's Symposium by the Sea. Please review the following information and plan to arrive early enough to complete this check in process.

All guests must provide either proof of full vaccination or valid negative test in the following methods:

  • A photograph of the CDC-issued document, or state-issued QR code demonstrating proof of full vaccination. Click here for full vaccination guidelines.
  • A photograph of negative test results by PCR nasal or saliva based test or Rapid Antigen home test kit that fall within the approved timeline (PCR tests can be taken up to two days prior to your check in at PLNU. Be aware that results may take 24-72 hours. Rapid Antigen/home test kits may only be taken one day prior to your check in)

We will provide a place to check in and provide this information in exchange for a bracelet, which will grant access to that evening's interview in Brown Chapel. We appreciate your help as we navigate systems in place to keep you safe. 



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Writer's Symposium Video ArchiveClick here to view Writer's Symposium by the Sea interviews from past years, recorded by UCSD-TV.